Weh dem up to: Sky is the limit for Looga Man
Popular dancehall deejay group Dutty Cup Crew may have died a natural death back in the early 2000s, but original member Ayun Kanye Daley, better known as 'Looga Man', is still alive and kicking.
Ever since the split, Looga Man has focused all his energy on his family and pursuing a professional career in the music industry.
Looga Man, alongside Mossy Kid, were introduced to Sean Paul and Kid Kurup in 1996, through Jeremy Harding, and soon formed the rest of the Dutty Cup Crew.
As the son of Richard Daley, original bass player of Third World, music was innate. He arrived on the scene with a powerful voice and a passion.
A few months later, Harding released the Playground rhythm which ultimately had a track recorded by Dutty Cup Crew, featuring Looga Man and Mossy Kid.
Stick Up was a sort of 'ride the rhythm' studio vibe production, but gave the group an opening.
He said everyone decided to go their separate ways for a variety of reasons, but things were still good between them.
He became a stay-at-home dad, taking care of his son while his mother went to work.
"I would still go to the studio from time to time, (but) the energy was not right," he said.
He has continued to release upbeat, hard-pumping, dancehall singles such as Feel Good, featuring Jovi Rockwell, in 2006, Blaze Up in 2011, and the most recent, Sky is the Limit, produced by Stainless Records.
"It's a sacrifice I had to make at the time. With my son being bigger now, I am more flexible and more focused. Sky is the Limit speaks to upliftment and reaching goals, with a message that you can always do better," he said.
Looga Man, along with the rest of the Dutty Cup Crew, were labelled as uptown deejays.
A GHETTO ARENA
"That label was coined because of the schools we attended and where we reside. Also, it was because of the way some of us speak and dress, it became an identity for uptown," Looga Man said. "Dancehall is seen as a ghetto arena or an outlet for the less privileged, a music that they can call their own and we as uptown artistes only get a piece of the pie if accepted."
Of course, the singjay's hip-hop style did not help with changing the views of listeners. The talent to blend international flavours with dancehall made Looga Man stand out, but at the same time could have turned away listeners who were interested in hardcore, clash-type lyrical styles in the 1990s.
Looga Man has decided to use that as part of the driving force behind Shock Wave, a small-scale dancehall stage show he is promoting, with live acts like Kim Nain, Jason Lee Worton and Kush God, to be hosted on December 1 at the Grosvenor Cafe.
"I think we concentrate on one set of artistes too much for such a weak industry in relation to sales of the music in comparison to other genres. The show is really to highlight up-and-coming artistes in particular voices from uptown but it is not limited to that. Hopefully it can expand into a successful series," Looga Man said.
In addition to new productions, the entertainer is currently revisiting some of Third World's material, sounds of his father's, in particular, in the hope of sampling material to build new music around it.
He is determined to find his footing in the New Age dancehall scene with his same unique style.
"Hopefully, all of us can meet at the top. Who knows? Maybe Dutty Cup Crew will come back with a production that turns heads," he said.