#STARTop5Today: Things you must do as a dancehall artiste

November 12, 2015

Ok sooo...Everybody wants to be a dancehall artiste-these days at least. Some have abandoned mainstream media for social media and others have taken extreme measures to get the proverbial 'buss' in the business.

Kudos to them! We're not hating. However, all dancehall hopefuls should know about the top 5 things you must expect once you enter the dancehall arena. 

We've decided to help out, here goes:

1. Dedicate a song to a dance move: There's no getting away from this one-it's DANCEhall. Jamaica is famous for our unique dance moves, ask Ele, Beenie, Bounty, Vegas, Spice, Tifa or even Buju (remember the Bogle song?). It doesn't matter who you are, you must have a dancing song in your catalog. That will put you waaaay up! 


2. "Bun a fyah" on something- anything: Whether it be child abuse, poverty, bleaching, politics or a topical issue. Dancehall is based on social commentary and remember you are the voice of the masses. Remember Bounty Killer encouraged us to pressure our books, Mr Lexx introduced the pretty girls to the cook book and Vegas warned against "jackets".


3. You have to do a mama song: Rest in Peace Miss Ivy. Now, mama songs go a far way. Nobody will bash a song about the hard work, love and sacrifice typical of a Jamaican mother. Even the most hardcore dancehall artistes have gone here-Mama, mama...dem neva carry we fi one month dem carry we fi nine and we love them.


4. You must have a feud with another artiste: Deliberately or accidentally, a feud is inevitable. Believe it or not, feuds can be good for your career as long as you keep it healthy. Feuds can even pay especially during the Christmas season, ask Kiprich, Merciless, Ninjaman and others. Rivalry is a defining feature of dancehall music and some have lived on for years, right Beenie and Bounty?


5. You must get into trouble with the law: Whether you have evaded your taxes, hit a woman with a hammer, used a bad word on stage or failed to park in a designated spot, trouble seems to know where to find dancehall artistes. Over the years dancehall acts have had a history of run-ins with the law. Some have been arrested for days, weeks, months and even 35 years- to life.


Do you agree with this list? What would you add?

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