Toppa Top 10: Top Reggae/Dancehall Songs About New York

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4. Cocoa Tea, “Rikers Island”

We hear this song has been getting play from French DJs recently thanks to the scandal that saw French presidential hopeful/IMF chairman Dominique Strauss-Khan enter New York’s most famous prison for a brief spell last month. The inverse of Charlie Chaplin’s optimistic “Entertainer,” Cocoa Tea’s tune is a cautionary tale for Jamaicans seeking to go aย  farin: The first time a youth come to New York/Dem tell a yute, you mustn’t skylark/Learn a trade or go to school/And don’t you turn yourself into fool/But now him gone a Rikers Island/Him never wan a go Rikers Island.