In 2010 many persons felt the blow of the global recession, even though some Ministers were quick to say that Jamaica had some form of immunity. Da da dee da da do. Jamaicans did alot of banning of belly aka exercise fiscal restraint, as the economy experienced contractions. With the swift and rapid thud of Cash Plus, Olint and their affiliate organizations, and the Stanford and Madoff meltdowns the free flow of cash that was enjoyed by many a gallis (men with many women, even if they have a wife), maties (women on the side) and partygoers dwindled.
Many shows did not see the large number of patrons to which they were accustomed, a number of top artistes were grounded and many experienced a drop in income either from the decline in the numbers of Dancehall Reggae shows or the number of shows that actually wanted Jamaican acts, record sales was not mentioned as in recent times it has been a negligible contributor of income.
Gyptian aside, if one were not au fait with contemporary dancehall happenings, one could easily get the impression that there was only one main dancehall artiste from Jamaica. Granted, there are many others who are just as good, but Vybz Kartel aka Mr Palmer aka Di Teacha has become an all encompassing pervasive brand.
With the Gaza Gully Feud settled many felt that dancehall would become boring as many thought it was a genre which thrived primarily on controversy and rivalry. Kartel would change the canvas and painted many pictures with his lyrical dexterity. His main contemporary counterpart, Mavado put out fewer songs, though those which he did release connected with his audience.
In recent times, close to Boxing Day, the day itself and soon after, there has been a huge surge in interviews being done by Di Teacha on airwaves. The interview which in my opinion brought out some very salient points was the one with Cliff Hughes.
Part 1 of Kartel’s Interview with Cliff Hughes
Part 2 of Kartel’s Interview with Cliff Hughes
His lyrics and personal lifestyle choices aside, Vybz Kartel
a. Is a Jamaican citizen with rights and if he was a person of interest as he was earlier this year, then reasons should have been put forward as to why he was being sought
b. He seems to be a constant target for police search, without any due reason being given to him; should this be the norm for Jamaican citizens. Can you imagine how many have endured this, but do not have ready access to mainstream media like Mr Palmer.
c. Recently there were some disturbing happenings; the raid on an event in Trelawny where he was scheduled to perform and his club in New Kingston (more than once) seem to bear some relation to a disagreement with a former high ranking member of the police force; though no direct causation can be made, street talk can be a powerful indicator and if the street talks bear validity, what does this say of the rights of a Jamaican citizen.
d. Despite not having a visa to his hughest market the USA, Kartel has demonstrated resilience and fortitude in an exacting economic environment. Putting entrepreneurial skills at work, he is building his Empire with the Street Vybz Brand, leased The Building and amped up numbers to the club and he is now coming out with his cake soap line. While it has not been declared by Clarkes, the diaspora would agree that he has caused an increase in the sales of the brand. How is this that his entrepreneurial mastery is hardly highlighted, with more emphasis being placed on his skin hue.
Whilst it is agreed that skin bleaching is detrimental to one’s health, it is a matter of choice and yes, while Kartel does wield alot of influence at the end of the day, it is an individual’s choice to wash dem (their) face wid (with) the cake soap, set good like the ice inna freezer (in the freezer) or rise up the clutch back.
e. Many an artiste would do well to learn how to handle interviews like Mr Palmer.
Wonder what 2011 brings.