I envied everyone who attended and tweeted about Rebel Salute in Jamaica this past weekend. Rebel Salute is (probably) the biggest strictly roots reggae festival in Jamaica. Strictly uplifting and conscious songs, no meat or alcohol sold. Ital is vital. This year marked 20 years for the event which was increased to a two-day event last year as it outgrew itself. As such, the line-up boasted majority of the artists I would like see. Recently, they have been adding dancehall artists, but using their birth name as it's more to do with the person than their alter-ego. Marion Hall (Lady Saw), David Brooks (Mavado) and Moses Davis (Beenie Man) to name most. The most intriguing performance, to me, was the Rodney Price performance.
While the name "Bounty Killer" doesn't bring forth images of warm kindness and uplifting "reggae", to those that know his catalogue, he's one of the most conscious deejay's when he wants to be. Lets not forget this is a guy who grew up in a poor community and was shot around 15 years old in gang warfare (think he was caught in crossfire).
"Poor people governor" Killer is one of my favourite incarnations of any dancehall artist. And we all know he preaches on stage about what's really going on. And love him or hate him, he stands for what he believes in and encourages people to do so. The people love him for representing for the man dem in times Beenie Man represented the gal dem. Something I respect about many dancehall artists.
Starts off a bit shaky but gets a lot better when he settles down to sing the songs out. Rifles through classics "Down In The Ghetto", "Fed Up", "Book, Book, Book", "Sufferer" to new ones like "Badmind Dem A Pree". When he tells the smoke man to stop the smoke, yells "PEEEOOOPPLLLE DEEEEAD!" removes the darkers (sunglasses) then performs "Look"! Then the lyrics he flashes on the same riddim talking to the politicians them? Fire. Don't know what song that is, but the lyrics earned a gun finger (of love) over here. Then "Anytime".
While we're at it, there is a big vacancy for a 2014 version of Bounty Killer. Right now. If you wanna buss, follow Bounty Killer's blueprint. There's a void.
Will post some more vids as I see them. Check back.