Jamaica Gleaner - - ENTERTAINMENT - Kim­ber­ley Small Gleaner Writer

UTIL­IS­ING THE In­ter­net has af­forded many artistes the chance to share, con­nect and en­gage with part­ners and con­sumers across the globe. And as the World Wide Web blurs the bar­ri­ers to com­mu­ni­ca­tion and in­ter­na­tional in­ter­ac­tion, at­tempts to fuse mu­si­cal sounds have be­come per­va­sive. “What is hap­pen­ing is that the dis­tinc­tions and the bar­ri­ers be­tween mu­sic forms, they are slowly col­laps­ing. A lot of th­ese bar­ri­ers were ar­ti­fi­cial. One of the big­gest fac­tors trig­ger­ing that col­lapse is the In­ter­net. It is mak­ing the sound and the ex­pe­ri­ence of peo­ple spread,” said mu­sic in­dus­try pro­fes­sional Clyde McKen­zie.

“We see the many sam­ples of Ja­maican mu­sic, we see songs that are heav­ily in­flu­enced by Ja­maican mu­sic. What is the ap­pro­pri­ate re­sponse to this de­vel­op­ment?” he queried.

McKen­zie said, “We need to insert our­selves in that kind of space. The suc­cess of our mu­sic means that more and more peo­ple abroad are able to pro­vide and per­form our mu­sic in ways that we thought only we were able to do. Look at [Sis­ter Nancy’s] Bam Bam, and you look at how sam­pled that song is.”

How­ever, he said, “Ja­maicans have not been very good at claim­ing what is their own. The aver­age Ja­maican would not be able to recog­nise Clive Camp­bell (DJ Kool Herc), who de­buted sound sys­tem cul­ture in the Bronx, seed­ing the de­vel­op­ment of hip hop, one of the most in­flu­en­tial mu­sic gen­res in the world. Forty-four years of the ex­is­tence of hip hop – it’s a Ja­maican mu­sic form. Don’t let any­body fool you ‘bout that. But we do not recog­nise that.”

McKen­zie of­fered the ex­am­ple of Des­pac­ito, re­fer­ring to it as the big­gest song of 2017.

“Des­pac­ito is a reg­gae­ton song. It is in­flu­enced heav­ily by Ja­maican mu­sic, whether we like it or not. Per­formed by Puerto Ri­cans Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yan­kee, it had the vo­cal sup­port of Cana­dian pop star Justin Bieber. Things that used to be for­eign to [us] are no longer so. So when you hear the mu­sic, you’re hear­ing in­flu­ence from all over the world,” he con­tin­ued.


After earn­ing plat­inum and di­a­mond plaques and hit­ting the 100 mil­lion mark on Spo­tify, dance­hall artiste Charly Black con­tin­ues mak­ing strides on the in­ter­na­tional scene with a

We need to insert our­selves in that kind of space. The suc­cess of our mu­sic means that more and more peo­ple abroad are able to pro­vide and per­form our mu­sic in ways that we thought only we were able to do.

re­it­er­a­tion of the per­va­sive song, Gyal Yuh A Party

An­i­mal. Charly Black re­cently added his vo­cals to a remix of the sum­mer smash Des­pac­ito. The reg­gae­ton artiste has since re­turned the favour, adding his vo­cal stylings to a re­make of

Gyal Yuh A Party An­i­mal. It was pre­miered ex­clu­sively on Bill­

Black’s man­ager, Ju­lian Jones-Grif­fiths, said, “They are look­ing at this as the fol­low-up to Des­pac­ito. Even though it’s done well main­stream, they still be­lieve they can ful­fil real

po­ten­tial. Party An­i­mal never re­ally con­nected in the US, but they al­ways be­lieved in it and re­fused to give up on it,” he said.

Party An­i­mal was orig­i­nally re­leased un­der ma­jor la­bel Uni­ver­sal Mu­sic, and comes back with more as­sis­tance from AfterCluv Records, the team be­hind Des­pac­ito.

The Sick­est Drama (TSD), Nomad Car­los and Five Stee, make up The Coun­cil, a Ja­maican three-man hip-hop group. The trio has col­lab­o­rated with Massy the Cre­ator, Koro Fyah and Kabaka Pyra­mid on Mis­ery, their lat­est sin­gle, pro­mot­ing their up­com­ing de­but al­bum. “The tra­di­tional av­enues aren’t suited for us,” Five Steez told The Sun­day Gleaner. Mis­ery is a rap bal­lad about sys­tem­atic op­pres­sion in the mod­ern ‘Third World’, eco­nomic frus­tra­tion, repa­ra­tion, repa­tri­a­tion mes­sages un­der­stood groups across the globe.

“Re­leas­ing a sin­gle in 2017 is a nav­i­ga­tion of both tra­di­tional and non-tra­di­tional out­lets. Of course, you al­ways ap­proach ra­dio DJs. Most of our sup­port is from over­seas hip-hop dee­jays on­line or on Sir­ius XM ra­dio. We make the mu­sic avail­able on Sound­cloud and so­cial me­dia has been an im­pact­ful force Face­book, Twit­ter and In­sta­gram. We in­ter­act with our au­di­ence through all of th­ese chan­nels, so not only do we re­lease mu­sic, but also pro­vide an op­por­tu­nity for you to log on to the move­ment,” TSD told The Sun­day Gleaner.

The re­cently re­leased Live Your Life was spear­headed by world mu­sic singer and song­writer Ms. Bodega, who in­vited the con­tri­bu­tion of Nige­ri­ans, pro­ducer Young D and singer MC Gal­axy. Also con­tribut­ing to the pro­ject are Is­raeli-Amer­i­can rap­per Neil Ba­jayo and Cana­di­anRwan­dan artiste.



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