The Celebrity Status Boat Ride

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The line outside courtesy of Haitianbeatz.com

As Synco Powers, Vlad Calixte (aka Haitian V.), and I walked up to Pier 40 I thought to myself, “this crowd can’t be for one boat ride!”  However, to my amazement, all of those people were there for DJ Stakz “Celebrity Status Bday Bash Boat Ride”.  Try saying that ten times fast.  DJ Stakz‘ annual boat ride did not disappoint.  Not only did it not disappoint, it was the best boat ride of the summer so far.  The event was promoted by Team HKNY and Hi-Profyle Entertainment.  In case you didn’t know, HKNY and Hi-Profyle are at the forefront of Haitian-American events in the New York area.  They have sold out venues such as Club Amazura, the Hammerstein Ballroom, and countless other venues throughout the area.  So DJ Stakz’ birthday event was no different.

As the boat left the dock a little after 2am you could feel the anticipation throughout the vessel.  There were two sound systems set up on the three level boat.  On the lowest level there were DJs playing strictly Kompa and Zouk.  On the third level there was a mixture of R&B, Hip Hop, Reggae, Soca, and Kompa.  The variety was amazing.  As DJ Stakz proclaimed later in the night, this was truly “an international boat ride.”  I spent most of my time on the third level.  The night started off with Ontrack Disco playing R&B to warm up the many ladies on board.  As the drinks were flowing and the crowd loosened up, Ontrack Disco transitioned into late 80’s Lover’s Rock reggae.  Artists such as Papa San, Shabba Ranks, and Beres Hammond were helping to build up the vibe.  As the energy built, SNL Boyz Synco and Ontrack went into a vibrant soca set.  The party had officially gotten on its way.

Ontrack Disco & Synco Powers warming up the crowd

Next up was the birthday boy himself, DJ Stakz.  I must say that Stakz definitely knew exactly how to control the crowd.  He played a Kompa set that turned the boat upside down.  The crowd seemed to sing out throughout the entire set.  Haiti pride was definitely overflowing on the Hudson River.  Every time DJ Stakz solicited for a response from the crowd they responded with  great exuberance.  It was truly a sight to see.  As DJ Stakz’ set was reaching its end, Hot 97’s Mr. Cee was preparing to come in next.  At this point I leaned over to Ontrack and said “I don’t know how Cee is going to follow that set.”  Ontrack simply replied with one word, “watch.”  I didn’t expect to see what happened next.  DJ Stakz introduced Mr. Cee and stayed on the microphone.  Mr. Cee went into a Kompa set that had the crowd in an even more intense frenzy!  After the incredible Kompa set, Mr. Cee went into a machine gun paced Hip Hop set that would not let the crowd rest for a second.  At this point I forgot about anything outside of that boat.  I didn’t think about a drink, a seat, a bathroom break, only vibes.

DJ Stakz & Hot 97’s Mr. Cee

I was surprised when the boat arrived at the dock.  I lost track of time and I could tell that my sentiment was shared by many on the boat.  Hi-Profyle and Team HKNY are set to overload Times Square on August 27th with “Kompa Rehab vs Zouk Therapy 2: The Broadway Edition”.

 

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An Incredible Event for First Class Blue in Brooklyn!

Nocturnal at its best

Club Nocturnal in the Flatbush section of Brooklyn was very festive last week, to say the least.  It was a birthday celebration for First Class Blue.  Thunderbolt with Alley Cat and Super Brad were in the building.  The SNL Boyz were also in rare form that night.  Yours truly assisted my counterparts in finishing two bottles of Coconut Ciroc mixed with pineapple juice.  Allow me to digress for a brief moment.  I usually buy Grey Goose, but I have to say that the chemical reaction and taste of Ciroc is more compatible with my chemical makeup.  In other words, I’m officially supporting Ciroc to the fullest.  Brooklyn clubs have come a long way from what was the norm in the 1990’s.  Nocturnal is sleek with a non intrusive lighting system and a beautiful sound system.  Ontrack Disco started off the night with a set of mainly Hip Hop and R&B.  The music selection  mixed with the Ciroc experience had me wanting to dust off my hype man skills and grab the microphone.  However, Super Brad was doing a good job of MCing.  After Ontrack Finished his set, Thunderbolt took over.  I have to mention my appreciation for Thunderbolt.  Those of you who are on the Caribbean scene in NYC already know.  Super Brad always seems to make the appropriate selection with Alley Cat making equally appropriate and entertaining speeches.  Thunderbolt’s set spanned many years of reggae music.  At this time I was on my Second bottle of Ciroc.  I was feeling nice.

Blue's cake, yes it's really a cake!

The highlight of the night for me was when the youngest SNL Boy, DJ Youngstar took over with about 20 minutes left to party.  The mixes were coming at the crowd fast and furious.  Whether it was Rick Ross or Jay Z, the crowd was at full tilt and singing out hard.  Synco Powers was assisting with getting the crowd into a frenzy.  When 4am came around and the lights turned on, nobody dared to leave.  Everyone was still dancing, singing and “vibing” as if it was still early.  Overall a very good party, 4.5 out of 5.  Can’t wait for next year!

Any party that can get me to dance for prolonged periods of time is definitely a good one.  All of the DJs brought the heat.  The Ciroc brought the warmth.  And the crowd brought the energy.  Happy birthday Blue!  And if you want a fly cake for your party you can contact the ladies at BCake!!!!

Soca Superstar Rupee Poised to Mash Up Crop Over

Having recently captured the theme song for the latest season of the popular HGTV series, Design Star, with the song “Flaunt It,” Barbadian soca superstar and Atlantic Records recording artist, Rupee, continues to make incredible moves for the genre.

“It’s not easy trying to stay committed to a genre of music that so much of the world has yet to experience,” reveals Rupee, who brought massive attention to the southern Caribbean namesake with his massive crossover hit, “Tempted to Touch.” “Sometimes I feel as though I could cheat on soca and give in to the lure of going straight pop, R&B or even alternative; I dabble in all of these styles but soca is what made me.”
Rupee thus stays true to his love for the genre with two new releases for this year’s Barbados Crop Over season, both of which have the potential to help him on his mission to reach the worldwide masses. “Traveling the world and seeing how our music uplifts people, seeing a reflection of the love I get in the West Indies transcend to different cultures and races, is what keeps me faithful and fuels my mission to make the world fully embrace soca.”
The first single, “All Night Long,” is a romantic, sexy tune that sees Rupee in a comfortable place – composing songs for the ladies.  This mid-tempo vibe, with that familiar “Tempted To Touch” flavor, is a sure fire tune for the dance floors. It was produced by Victorious, an upcoming Miami DJ and producer. Also, in an effort to further uplift and promote younger talent, Rupee collaborated with rising songwriter and performer, Young D, to co-write the song.
“I get hundreds of tracks and songs from producers, writers and performers regularly but not many stand out,” Rupee divulges. “Then DJ Barrie Hype from Miami sent me this riddim and I felt it immediately. One of my touring DJs, Alvin Toppin ‘the Soca Superman,’ put me onto Young D in an effort to give him a chance, and I did. The stuff he writes is definitely in my zone and he says I am one of his biggest influences for his music.”
The second track, “Everybody,” is a guaranteed party-starter and will definitely ignite the crowd. On this track, Rupee revisits the classic WCK tune, “Balance Batty.”
“I was blessed to have once had Cornell ‘Fingers’ Phillip in my band and he was the original producer of ‘Balance Batty’ and also leader of the band, WCK,” explains Rupee. “I linked up with him to recreate the track with a fresher twist. Then to further bless the track, we secured the services of mega soca producer/DJ and multiple Road March winner, Peter ‘No Stoppin’ Coppin. Peter injected a power soca vibe of energy into the song. It’s a crazy combination of Bouyon and power soca. I think this will definitely be a winner in the clubs and on the road.”

For artist news and updates on Rupee, log on to his artist profiles at:

www.facebook.com/therealrupee,

www.twitter.com/therealrupee and

www.myspace.com/rupeemusic.

For further information, please contact bookrupee@gmail.com.

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Spragga Benz Delivers ‘Shotta Culture’

Spragga Benz is one of the greatest lyricists of all time, but we also cannot ever begin to discount the entertainment value brought forth from this prolific artist over the years.  Now in 2010, please take note of that which is to come.  Drum and bass, plus horns blended with timely, precise, thought-provoking lyrical presentation… Here is some of the latest and greatest material out of Jamaica: Shotta Culture (Official Music Video).

Stay tuned…

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Toronto Songbird Tanya Mullings To Host Internet Radio Show

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Atlanta: After having conquered so many feats in the entertainment industry, multi award winning reggae singer Tanya Mullings is now ready to take on a new challenge – her own radio program (The Tanya Mullings Show) – on Atlanta based www.daflavaradio.com.

Mullings, who got her break on radio co-hosting the popular “Rebel Vibez” on CHRY 105.5FM in Toronto with her sister Carrie Mullings will join an all celebrity cast that includes Gramps Morgan, Diva Nikki Z, Kevy Kev, Soca DJ Choice One MD, Jah Prince, DJ Rifa Madness, Highlanda Sound and Rico Vibes. Her first show will air live from the Da Flava studios on Thursday July 1st from noon – 3pm and every Thursday thereafter.

“This is a chance of a life time” she told station owner Rico Vibes when he first contacted her about hosting a show.

“I feel honored to be invited to be part of the Da Flava radio family and I’m looking forward to this journey. For those who know me, you always see me blogging for other artist…these are artists I feel need to be heard and that’s what I plan to bring to my radio show. It’s all about bringing the people good reggae music. I truly like what the station brings to the table and how they support artists. And myself as an artist, it feels really good to have the opportunity to help others. To my fans, I hope you enjoy the show and thanks as always for the love and support you’ve given me all these years” she said with tears of joy streaming down her face.

In the 21 years since she has been involved in the industry, Tanya has released four albums with the most prestigious producers in the industry covering all sub-genres of reggae and R&B.

“My love for music was inspired by my father, the late Karl Mullings who managed my career along with the late Jackie Mittoo, Lynn Taitt and Hopeton Lewis” she recalls.

Her musical journey has taken her to international festivals like Reggae Sumfest in Jamaica; the Montreal International Reggae Festival & the Calgary International Reggae Festival in Canada; North America‘s premier rIrie Jamboree and Madison Square Gardens in New York; Hard Rock Live in Orlando FL and Brixton Academy in London England. She has won various industry awards including the Top International Reggae Artist (2010), International Reggae and World Music Award (2009), fourteen Canadian Reggae Music Awards, seven Caribbean Crucible Awards, two Reggae Music Achievement Awards. She was also nominated five times for the prestigious Juno Awards in Canada (Grammy equivalent) and was presented with the Citizens Award for the Arts by the City of Brampton in Ontario, Canada.

In 2004 her hit songs ‘A Love Thang’ by multi platinum producer Bobby “Digital” and ‘Love and Affection,’ were featured on the television pilot “Da Kink In My Hair” which was produced and directed by Tonya Lee Williams of the Young and the Restless. While working on her fourth album “Music Is My Life” which featured Morgan Heritage, Tanto Metro, Craig T and Mega Banton, her father passed away but Tanya found the strength to complete the album with the help of producers Bobby Digital, Dalton Browne, “Computer” Paul, Morgan Heritage, Devonte, Patrick Roberts, Danny Browne, Byron Bobby Treasure, Robert Browne and Dubmatix. With her new stint on radio, Tanya is ready to prove she is not just a rising star but a star that has risen.

contact:
TanyaMullingsShow@gmail.com
www.twitter.com/@1TanyaMullings

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Oh What a Wednesday Night

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Stacked @ Stay Ultra Lounge

After the N.E.R.D. concert at Brooklyn Bowl on Wednesday my associate Jay White and I decided to go into Manhattan to check out DJ Jon Oliver & Mr. Vega at Stay on East Houston.  It was my first time in the lounge, and I was impressed.  It was a great atmosphere, but nothing beat the music.  When we walked in some old school Hip Hop was being played.  The mixing was flawless.  Before I even knew it we were into a totally different genre, but it was seem-less.  I especially liked the remixes of vocals from various genres to a funky upbeat dance-style of rhythm.  I know that description may seem vague, but that is the only way I can describe it.  Music nowadays is very eclectic, but I digress.  DJ Jon Oliver gave us a tour of the lounge and downstairs, where there is a secret lounge (shhh…don’t say I told you).  Overall Stay is definitely a good place to take someone to relax and maybe bust a move or two.

After Stay we went around the corner to Ella on Avenue A.  I was very impressed by the decor inside of Ella.  I couldn’t get pictures, but please visit the site to see exactly how it looks.  Let me talk to the fellas for a minutes.  Gentlemen, this is the type of spot that you take a female that you’re trying to impress.  The flip side of that is, drums please, there are already beautiful people hanging out.  So you can decide whether or not you want to “bring sand to the beach”.  We made our way downstairs where the real party was jumping off.  The music was great.  It was electronic mixed in with a little funk.  I was going once the DJ got into his Michael Jackson set!  Two thumbs up from me.

The next, and final, spot for the night was Apotheke.  What can I say about this establishment?  It is an aesthetically pleasing place to be.  You can go to their site and see for yourself what Apotheke is about; I do not want to do it any injustice.  Anyone who knows me knows that I like to partake in adult beverages from time to time.  Apotheke is more than a bar.  It is a place where the bartenders are mixologists.  That title is not a joke.  I have gone there many times and it has never disappointed.  If you want to drink, you can drink.  If you want to dance, you can dance.  However, this spot is, by all accounts, exclusive.  So do not be surprised if you finally figure out exactly where this spot is and you get to the door and they tell you that it doesn’t exist.  If I were to say that this spot was for NYC’s elite, I would be saying too much.  However, I would suggest that you look at the site, see if its for you, and make a valiant effort to go.  Real talk!

N.E.R.D. Proves They’re Not Just a Gimmick @ Brooklyn Bowl

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We still got in.

Being that I am an aspiring music producer, I jumped at an opportunity to see N.E.R.D. perform at Brooklyn Bowl in Williamsburg last night.  It was an RSVP only event sponsored by Walmart and Axe Body Spray.  This was the first event of four for my Wednesday night.  The event was sold out and the RSVP list was closed.  So naturally Jay White and I decided to go anyway.  Long story short, Jay is always on the list, which is why I will be posting a blog entry about him in the near future.  I have to admit, although I purchased their first two albums, and will purchase the fourth, I am a N.E.R.D. rookie.  I didn’t know the lyrics to any songs (real talk).  However, all of that didn’t matter.  When the band was performing a brief tune up before the show kicked off I heard it.  I heard a perfectly round, clear, and distinct low end.  For those who aren’t into music the low end is the bass.  But this was not your average kicker type bass, it was undistorted.  Once I heard this I knew that the system was perfectly tuned.  And it was, perfectly tuned indeed.  Whether it was vocals, drums, or guitar, everything was clear.  I have to admit that I was impressed by the way Pharell controlled his vocals.  By no means is he a virtuoso, but he uses his voice in the best way possible.

Before Pharell came out, the lead guitarist led the crowd in an amazing rendition of the “Star Spangled Banner”, a la Jimi Hendrix, minus the acid.  As soon as Pharell came on stage it was pandemonium.  He started with some new tracks from the soon to be released album “Nothing”.  Then the group went into some old favorites such as “Lap Dance” and “Beautiful”.  As I said earlier, I am an N.E.R.D. rookie, so don’t ask me for a playlist of the songs that were played…lol.  In all seriousness, I moved my body from start to end.  To everyone’s surprise Lupe Fiasco joined the group on stage and periodically emptied bottles of water onto the crowd.  He must have done it at least four times.  The las t time he used two bottles, but the crowd was into it.  The entire crowd was captivated by the group.  I was especially impressed by the dual drummers in the background.  There was a particular part of the show where the drummers got to share a solo and started a very fast paced call and answer with each other.  After the hour long set I felt that my free entry was worth it.  Seriously though, I would have paid $40 or more if I knew this show would be so well put together.  I would definitely recommend that anyone who has the opportunity to see N.E.R.D. should take it!  This was only the first of four different venues we went to on Wednesday night.  Stay tuned for the follow up to the night.  I will let you know about the rest of the night.  One event down, three to go.  Check out the video and second video via the link at the bottom of the article.  I apologize for the quality, we are working on purchasing something other than a Blackberry to take videos.  Until next time.

– Your Man on the Streets

Here is another video from the show: Click.

Island Life In Atlanta Is Now A Reality

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New York Life kicks off Island Life Friday Event

A new beginning is underway in the heart of Atlanta’s Buckhead community.  Buckhead is the district in the northern section of Atlanta most famous for its nightlife, despite the recent closure of numerous nightclubs.  In the area formerly known as Buckhead Village, massive construction projects are transferring the area into The Streets of Buckhead, an upscale shopping area similar to Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills.

From the time of the 1996 Olympic games which Atlanta hosted in all its glory up until the January 2004 debut of the 3 a.m. closing time for Atlanta nightclubs, local party-goers and tourists alike took to the streets of Buckhead nightly  to partake of the many options in high-energy dance clubs. It was during that era that Highlanda Sound System was birthed and became Atlanta’s premier mainstream choice for Dancehall /Reggae Disc-jockeys.

Of the many successful events that Highlanda was involved with, one Friday night “bashment” in particular, Fantasy Island at The Deux Plex, still stands as the most nostalgic and probably most talked about Caribbean party thus far.  Here, for 18 consecutive Fridays from 2003 – 2004, Highlanda, working with Extreme Media attracted and performed for a diverse crowd of 800 – 1400 patrons weekly.

Bringing it up to the present, Krushmore Entertainment, Mixx Promotions, CaribbeanVibes.com, AtlantaDancehall.com, and MyPartyVibes.com present Island Life at Life Nightclub located at 1789 Cheshire Bridge Road (venue formerly known as The Deux Plex).  This summer promises to be hot in more ways that one as the 4th of July party weekend kick-off appropriately entitled New York Life features the sounds of Massive B from Hot 97FM in NYC alongside Highlanda.  This will definitely be Massive B with Bobby Konders himself on the 1’s and 2’s and DJ Lion Chef (Primal, Bentley’s, Icon Lounge) is also on the bill to provide the early warm up vibes.

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Drake Shows NYC Love

Preparing for the Album Release at Alife

Unless you have been living under a rock for the past few years, you should know that there is a new star on the rise.  That star is Drake.  Regardless of how you feel about his rhymes, flow, singing or appearance, you have to admit that he’s at the top right now.  There is no doubt that Drake can pack an arena, but on Monday evening a select few, 200 hundred people, were chosen to have an audience with Drake at Alife in lower Manhattan.  For Drake it was nostalgic to go back to the store where he use to hang and drink when he was trying to come up.  I have to say, for a Monday night, the event was a great way to kick off the week.  Those in attendance were able to be up close and personal with the Canadian star.  They were treated to audio from his new album “Thank Me Later” and an impromptu performance.  The names of those in attendance are too many to count, but there was definitely an electricity moving through the crowd.

I know that when it was time for Jay White, Brad Digital, and myself to leave for business, it was a reluctant move.  However, I was appreciative of the opportunity to usher in Drake’s album with him and a select few others.  Good luck Drake.

– Your Man on the Street

From the Streets of East Flatbush

Brooklyn Sky's Hawks T-Shirt

From the streets of East Flatbush, Brooklyn comes your next favorite T-Shirt line.  If you live in Flatbush you know that I am referring to Brooklyn Sky.  This up and coming, yet trendy, line was started by Michael Nicholas and Matthew Jones in a college dorm room in 2005.  Brooklyn Sky is an innovative line that draws its influence from everyday life in Brooklyn.  Nicholas, the line’s designer is definitely in tune with the rhythm of the streets of Brooklyn.  Some larger companies have tried to tap into that same energy, but have failed as their products have not connected with “the hood”, so to speak.

BSky, as the line is sometimes referred to, also shows their loyalty to the community by hosting small gatherings at the shop from time to time.  The modest 350 sq. ft. store is located in the heart of Flatbush, on Nostrand Ave.  They have recently launched a Kids line at a family fun day that they hosted for the community.  Not only do they support the surrounding community, but they have also donated funds to Haiti relief after the recent devastation took place in Port Au Prince.  Nicholas designed a Haiti relief shirt in which proceeds are going directly to various charities involved in the recovery effort.  The T-Shirts were released at a clothing and food drive for the relief effort, which was organized by Brooklyn Sky and SNL Promotions.

Haiti Relief T-Shirt by Brooklyn Sky

Needless to say, the buzz on the streets for Brooklyn Sky is at a fever pitch.  Artists such as Young Jeezy, Rick Ross, Fabolous, and Lil Wayne have accepted the brand.  BSky has also been spotted on local celebs such as DJ Magic, the SNL boyz, and DJ Young Chow, to name a few.  I have been known to wear a few Brooklyn Sky pieces myself.

If you want to check out some of their stuff go to www.BSkyBrand.com.  I’m sure that you will see something that you like.  Until next time.

– Your Man On The Streets