rolling dancehall & reggae 2021

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I felt better about the genre last year than I had in a while. There weren't a ton of stand-out hits, but lots of promising new artists starting out in a very consistent mode.

Here's something I largely overlooked last year: the Trinibad scene, which I usually liked well enough when I checked it out but didn't really connect with. So far I'm partial to Prince Swanny's melancholic stuff, though I love Boy Boy's feature on the Pa Salieu album and expect more good things from him.

Prince Swanny — "Tell Me"

Prince Swanny — "Heathen"

Also hoping we see albums from Rihanna, Koffee and Chronixx this year.

rob, Tuesday, 5 January 2021 15:16 (six months ago) link

I’ll leave the new-thread-making to rob, just came here to mention that Skillibeng has a 35-track album out called The Prodigy.

― partyin' maskless with Rudy G. and Vanilla Ice, it's a gas gas gas (breastcrawl), Monday, January 4, 2021 4:10 PM (yesterday)

(^from the 2020 thread.) I was getting really into this, until I hit a streak of eye-rollingly direct lyrics about blowjobs and had an insurmountable "I am too old for this" feeling. The production is very cool though, so I'll return and be a little quicker with the skip button.

rob, Tuesday, 5 January 2021 15:22 (six months ago) link

yeah, I was really into it as well when I played it last night and got all the way up to track 24, but when I played the final section today I was in for a rude awakening. some really weak and lame shit there, and I don’t think it was just because of the harsh daylight. it had me running straight into the arms of Dexta in fact - “call me if...”, and I did.

the first two thirds were fire for the largest part tho, tracks like “Vicious” (!!!), “Enemy Antidote”, “Bin Laden”, “Tun On E K”.

this is the current video from the album:
Skillibeng ft. Street Gena, Quenga, F.S. & One Sparkes • Not

going by Spotify availability I think only two of the tracks were released earlier and all the rest
is new, which would explain all that chaff, but it’s still quite impressive, even if many tracks are more mood pieces than fully-fledged songs.

otm, I returned to it while making that post and lyrically it's extremely off the cuff* but the production maintains consistent vibes: dark, psychedelic, at times a little 90s rap ("Enemy Antidote")

* iirc there were at least 3 songs in a row about fellatio, which is so ott it ends up kind of amusing. Plus I confess that despite being too-old-for-this I lolled at "gyal naam mi pickney, she wicked"

rob, Tuesday, 5 January 2021 15:53 (six months ago) link

lmao I just saw the name of track 33. I agree that overall this is impressive though, bodes v well for the year

rob, Tuesday, 5 January 2021 16:02 (six months ago) link

well, we’ll always have track 35

lol, the final three track names are p hilarious as a collection

rob, Tuesday, 5 January 2021 16:30 (six months ago) link

tbc I felt the last third was much weaker musically as well, but that the project as a whole was still quite impressive

(unrelated, and 2020, but I’m kind of sad longneck didn’t do any noms this year. feeling “Call Me If” should have been on the ILM record at least, not to mention other Kabza (& Maphorisa) projects besides I Am The King Of Amapiano)

xp tbh it's so much music I was pretty fatigued by the end and couldn't trust my ears anymore, but I wouldn't be at all surprised if the best riddims are in the first 2/3 -- would be super pleased if someone with the exact same taste as me took the time to cull a ~15-track version :)

"Call Me If" still hasn't quite grabbed me. I haven't written him off by any means, but nothing Dexta has done has ever topped the one-two punch (nb, I might be misremembering how closely they were released) of "7-11" and "Shabba Madda Pot," the latter in particular seems like a lane he's abandoned now and is what I'd most like to hear from him. Of course, now that I've posted this take publicly next time I hear "Call Me If" it will probably blow my mind.

Beyond the opining, I would love it if longneck posted more! Hell I'd forgotten about "Yami Bolo" until he mentioned it on the last thread. Never mentioned last year iirc, and I'd post the video now but it's hella violent.

rob, Tuesday, 5 January 2021 18:20 (six months ago) link

i love 'call me if,' sounds like ne yo 'let me love you'

ILX’s bad boy (D-40), Tuesday, 5 January 2021 18:51 (six months ago) link

felt last year’s Vent album was strong as well (caveat: I only played it once)

Prince Swanny dropped an album yesterday, Serenity, not sure if it's on other streaming yet:

rob, Saturday, 9 January 2021 19:02 (six months ago) link

just want to reiterate that "Heathen" is fucking dope, sounds like William Tyler produced it lol

rob, Saturday, 9 January 2021 19:04 (six months ago) link

ok I got a little bored during that tbh. the production is consistently good but the singles are enough.

I can't say enough how much I'm enjoying dancehall sounding weird again:

Rytikal f. Skillibeng "OneSyde"

rob, Saturday, 9 January 2021 19:15 (six months ago) link

Rytikal-Skillibeng 2021
Make Dancehall Weird Again

I have a soft spot for songs that sound like they’re tipsy or drunk, so this one works wonders!

(btw, on Spotify this track is called “1 EastSyde”

yeah I guess the youtube title is a typo?

Just saw that Skillibeng signed to Sony UK a few weeks ago

rob, Saturday, 9 January 2021 20:36 (six months ago) link

his new one "Hot" is accurately titled:

rob, Friday, 15 January 2021 02:24 (six months ago) link

we're in such a purple patch right now, I feel spoiled

Intence, "Money Nuff Funds"

rob, Friday, 22 January 2021 14:07 (six months ago) link

I'd like to thank whoever nominated Kartel's Uptop Gaza so I could vote for it, lol. I do think Yami Bolo is the standout Kartel track of the year, but there were many. Also voted for Likkel Bit Of Money, Lockdown, Lizard Pon Limb, Yeng, and even Heavy, even though that last vote should have gone to Tiwa's Koroba, in retrospect.

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Friday, 22 January 2021 21:43 (six months ago) link

I think I nom'd that one. And yeah, to your point, for me it's as much if not more a great Teejay song

rob, Friday, 22 January 2021 22:09 (six months ago) link

It’s definitely a great Teejay song, and a top ten Kartel tune as well so I’m not complaining. I was sad to see that no one had nom'd the Protoje album however - one of my absolute favs from last year.

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Friday, 22 January 2021 22:32 (six months ago) link

We forgot to nom Dexta too, huh? Tsk tsk tsk.

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Saturday, 23 January 2021 16:20 (six months ago) link

sure hope your new year’s resolution was to nominate your favourite tracks at the end of this year, longneck!

get down, get down, get down / why piano wenza so? (breastcrawl), Saturday, 23 January 2021 16:24 (six months ago) link

I would've thought about nominating Protoje, but tbh I had no idea you liked it! I did nominate "Switch It Up," but I think I cut it due to the same "lone voter" suspicion...sincere apologies if you end up being that lone voter, longneck

speaking of Proto, I like how he puts his whole crew in every video:

also enjoying Jahvillani, "Gangsta"

rob, Saturday, 23 January 2021 16:33 (six months ago) link

From last year
Maureen - Tic.

I'm thinking of Domino, it seems to be a whole style out of Martinique, probably with some kind of soca influence. Check also DJ Chinwax - Bubble.

Also very pleased to have found out about Jada Kingdom. Love her mix of styles.

Lastly: Shenseea - Sure Sure wasn't posted last year. Love it.

Nabozo, Sunday, 24 January 2021 11:47 (six months ago) link

Yeah, Sure Sure is fire. Might have voted for it if it had been nom’d.

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Sunday, 24 January 2021 14:20 (six months ago) link

I like Rvssian's riddim on that, but idk the vocal never quite takes off for me? Def like "Bad Alone" much more...though now that I'm listening to them back to back it's more similar than I remembered lol.

Did yall like "Lighter"? another one I couldn't make my mind up about

@Nabozo, yeah I've been repping for Jada around here for a while. I posted "Green Dreams" at the very end of the last thread, but it deserves a mention here, probably her most pop move so far:

rob, Sunday, 24 January 2021 21:03 (six months ago) link

i did like Lighter. It should have been huge, and might have been if clubs were open.

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Sunday, 24 January 2021 22:27 (six months ago) link

The video and lyrics are very NSFW, but I love the riddim on Rytikal's "Easily":

rob, Tuesday, 26 January 2021 20:04 (six months ago) link

(i nommed uptown gaza btw)

That's not really my scene (I'm 41) (forksclovetofu), Saturday, 30 January 2021 05:04 (six months ago) link

Thanks. We’ll all have to work a bit harder on our dancehall noms next year, even though Koffee deservedly made the list.

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Saturday, 30 January 2021 09:13 (six months ago) link

xp ah that's a relief actually, as I didn't vote for it and I always feel bad when I nom & ignore

rob, Saturday, 30 January 2021 13:29 (six months ago) link

I don’t vote for most of my nominations, but I see nothing wrong with that. it depends on your nomming strategy I guess. if you wait long enough, others will have nominated many of the big ones that you want to vote for, so for me it’s more about getting other good stuff on the ILM record. I love it when others pick up on nominations that I couldn’t make place for on my own ballot!

(also longneck, please promise us you will nominate your favourites next year!)

Long Tall Arsetee & the Shaker Intros (breastcrawl), Saturday, 30 January 2021 13:50 (six months ago) link

My guilt over that practice comes from a poster specifically getting mad at me about it one year :(

rob, Saturday, 30 January 2021 14:05 (six months ago) link

two weeks pass...

super into the slinky riddim on Aidonia's "Fever Temperature"

rob, Saturday, 13 February 2021 22:05 (five months ago) link

Govana, "P.O.P."

^can't wait for the radio edit of this one lmao

rob, Saturday, 20 February 2021 16:52 (five months ago) link

ok there is a radio edit ("power of goody") but it's not actually amusing :/

rob, Saturday, 20 February 2021 16:53 (five months ago) link

In a public Facebook post, longtime Shanachie records exec and music critic Randall Grass is touting Jaz Elise, Naomi Cowan, Shenseea, Lila Ike, Khalia, Sevana, Stefflon Don

curmudgeon, Saturday, 20 February 2021 20:23 (five months ago) link

good lord listen to this riddim

Maestro Don x Jahvillani, "Dutty Money"

rob, Thursday, 25 February 2021 13:41 (five months ago) link

meanwhile Rytikal is really pulling ahead of Skillibeng (who has dropped some real dreck this year) and Intence for me. I think he was arrested recently, hopefully that doesn't derail him.


but seriously listen to "Dutty Money" it's amazing

rob, Thursday, 25 February 2021 13:48 (five months ago) link

*i’m lovin’ it*

Long Tall Arsetee & the Shaker Intros (breastcrawl), Thursday, 25 February 2021 15:15 (five months ago) link


(and tbc Skilli and Intence have dropped plenty of bangers lately; could just do without zero-dimensional trash like "2 Gyal")

rob, Thursday, 25 February 2021 16:32 (five months ago) link

looks like Skillibeng heard I was hating

"The Lyricist"

rob, Friday, 26 February 2021 15:10 (five months ago) link

That's a very cool riddim, unusual as it is it works.

Nabozo, Friday, 26 February 2021 16:46 (five months ago) link

And you're prompting me to post one of said bangers
Intence - Pickachu

He slays on that minimalistic syncopated style.

Nabozo, Friday, 26 February 2021 19:51 (five months ago) link

yep that's one of them. And tbf to Intence he's actually pretty consistent compared to Skilli, though by that I mean I don't expect feats of lyrical brilliance from the guy who brought us "Dope":

on one level that song is amazing, on another the first line of the chorus is "we fuck gyal and sell coke" which is so hilariously lazy

rob, Saturday, 27 February 2021 00:17 (five months ago) link

I swore I already posted this one; man can spit

Rytikal, "Galaxy Brain"

rob, Saturday, 27 February 2021 00:28 (five months ago) link

one month passes...

All that thrilling energy at the start of the year has dissipated a bit, but I'm into this Jahvillani:

"North Coast"

That's the same riddim as Skillibeng's "Yo" which if, like me, you read the comments on dancehall youtubes you'll have seen has become kind of a meme about how lazy a lyricist he is. I can sympathize with that opinion, and yet I also kind of like "Yo"'s improvised babbling

rob, Wednesday, 21 April 2021 20:56 (three months ago) link

two weeks pass...

Dexta getting down & dirty with Davido:
Dexta Daps ft. Davido • Scripture

(produced by Drumma Boy)

Long Tall Arsetee & the Shaker Intros (breastcrawl), Saturday, 8 May 2021 19:13 (two months ago) link

I’m adding all the tracks posted here to this integrated Rolling Spotify playlist for all the Caribbean music threads (soca, dancehall, reggaeton/dembow/urbano, Martinique, other caribbopop). we’re 77(!) tracks in, feel free to follow:

ILM rolling Caribbean vibes 🥁🥁🥁

Long Tall Arsetee & the Shaker Intros (breastcrawl), Saturday, 8 May 2021 19:20 (two months ago) link

Enjoying these two Aurelia Day songs that just popped up on youtube:
Aurelia Day - Huntress
Aurelia Day - All These Neighbours

vcrash, Monday, 10 May 2021 01:10 (two months ago) link

*Aurelia Dey, in both cases 😕

vcrash, Monday, 10 May 2021 01:18 (two months ago) link

aw "Scripture" is really great...apart from some of those lyrics imho

not sure I've heard of Aurelia Dey before--she's Ghanaian? (or UK?)

I like this summery new Intence "Walk Out"

rob, Wednesday, 12 May 2021 13:23 (two months ago) link

lol people don't read this thread much huh, here's the actual Intence video:

rob, Wednesday, 12 May 2021 17:30 (two months ago) link

we were all waiting with bated breath for your big reveal

Long Tall Arsetee & the Shaker Intros (breastcrawl), Wednesday, 12 May 2021 17:32 (two months ago) link


I guess Projexx being on that Juls song almost makes it work anyway!

rob, Wednesday, 12 May 2021 17:36 (two months ago) link

so help me out here rob, which of my ILM Spotify playlists should it go on? rolling Caribbean or rolling Afro? this is just too tough...

Long Tall Arsetee & the Shaker Intros (breastcrawl), Wednesday, 12 May 2021 17:52 (two months ago) link

Aurelia Dey is (Ghanaian-)Swedish btw. don’t know what ”The Dancehall College” in Gothenburg is, but she runs it apparently.

Long Tall Arsetee & the Shaker Intros (breastcrawl), Wednesday, 12 May 2021 17:55 (two months ago) link

I guess I'd go African since Juls is the main credited artist, but these Black Atlantic collabs do trouble taxonomies nicely!

Hm wonder if I can get a Fulbright to go to Dey's college :)

rob, Wednesday, 12 May 2021 18:32 (two months ago) link

(only noticing now you had already posted the Juls track on Rolling Afropop)

Long Tall Arsetee & the Shaker Intros (breastcrawl), Wednesday, 12 May 2021 20:02 (two months ago) link

Nicki Minaj jumped on Skillibeng's "Crocodile" for some reason

rob, Friday, 14 May 2021 13:20 (two months ago) link

🚨💉OH LORD it's the song of the summer💉🚨

Chi Ching Ching - "Vaccine"

(CW: that video has some of the most ott daggering I've ever seen)

Ding Dong is on the same Stadic/Johnny Blaz riddim (called Freestyle):

"Yo Pull Up"

rob, Monday, 17 May 2021 22:43 (two months ago) link

CCC definitely deserves a prize for coming up with the vaccine/fuck scene double entendre

(maybe he didn’t come up with it, I was afraid to google)

Long Tall Arsetee & the Shaker Intros (breastcrawl), Tuesday, 18 May 2021 06:49 (two months ago) link

loving vaccine

human and working on getting beer (longneck), Tuesday, 18 May 2021 14:43 (two months ago) link

question: if amapiano ever hits dancehall, will we call it a) “jamapiano” or b) “ganjapiano”?
― Long Tall Arsetee & the Shaker Intros (breastcrawl), vrijdag 19 februari 2021 20:22

Voted raggapiano
― rob, vrijdag 19 februari 2021 20:35

can't wait for... shabbapiano
― human and working on getting beer (longneck), vrijdag 19 februari 2021 21:55

― rob, vrijdag 19 februari 2021 21:58

while we're not quite there yet...

...this is IzyBeats producing Masego's "Yebo/Sema"

Long Tall Arsetee & the Shaker Intros (breastcrawl), Sunday, 23 May 2021 13:44 (two months ago) link

That’s really nice

rob, Monday, 24 May 2021 01:14 (two months ago) link

four weeks pass...

Govana's "Karen" is a banger:

maybe the only time a video interrupting the song has paid off?

trap door to hell opens underneath (rob), Monday, 21 June 2021 13:57 (one month ago) link

Maybe. But yeah that’s a catchy banger

curmudgeon, Monday, 21 June 2021 15:54 (one month ago) link

lol there are probably zero instances of that trick truly paying off (I was at least amused by Govana tucking his gun under his armpit), and it's an esp annoying choice when the track isn't available anywhere else yet

trap door to hell opens underneath (rob), Monday, 21 June 2021 16:28 (one month ago) link

boom bang, it’s a total pounder:
Konshens ft. Davido • Boom Bang

ten man poland chasing this means hamsik feasts (breastcrawl), Tuesday, 29 June 2021 17:18 (one month ago) link

two weeks pass...

Skillibeng is just alright on this, but the riddim is neat, little flashes of fusion guitar, some tabla at the end, cool stuff:

"Money Tree"

rob, Wednesday, 14 July 2021 18:35 (two weeks ago) link

really like Skeng's floaty, minimalist, elegant "Brrrp" (technically 2020 but I missed it):

rob, Wednesday, 14 July 2021 18:49 (two weeks ago) link

also slept on this as Iwaata hasn't always done much for me, but here's another malevolently simple riddim:

"Clip Tall"

rob, Wednesday, 14 July 2021 18:53 (two weeks ago) link

this newer Skeng "Street Cred" is also v striking:

his other tunes are worth a listen too

rob, Wednesday, 14 July 2021 19:06 (two weeks ago) link

Intence "Yahoo Boyz" is blowing up for good reason:

this song is also a hit, an interesting take on trap + reggae. maybe the first JA production that sounds influenced by some of the Trinibad dripping guitars sound to me (also the global pop bad mood):

Nation Boss "Humans"

rob, Wednesday, 14 July 2021 19:20 (two weeks ago) link

two weeks pass...

Great to hear Di Genius riffing on late 80s/early 90s digital ragga (possibly a "Telephone Love" sample?) on Shenseea's "Run Run":

rob, Thursday, 29 July 2021 13:47 (three days ago) link

Oh shit Busy:

"Bruk Down Di Bed"

(Lol at my streaming service autofilling a search for this as "busy signal bruk down in bed")

rob, Thursday, 29 July 2021 13:55 (three days ago) link

SiriusXM moves reggae channel the Joint to online only and not on car radios and replaced it with Bob Marley hits channel

curmudgeon, Friday, 30 July 2021 18:02 (two days ago) link

I've never listened to Sirius so can't say I truly care about that, but I do wonder why you'd want a radio channel that literally only plays Bob Marley (or any single artist). Is there someone out there who would really be annoyed to hear Toots or Peter Tosh or Jimmy Cliff interrupting their obsessive Marley listening?

rob, Friday, 30 July 2021 19:41 (two days ago) link

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