WHENEVER Massive Youth hits the stage, he opens his present with “I Pray Thee”, his highly effective chant on the hallowed Sata Massa Gana rhythm. That’s deliberate.

“Yuh mus’ bless di folks dem ‘trigger wi dwell in a tragic world yuh nuh, mi bredrin,” mentioned the veteran deejay, who will probably be awarded the Order of Distinction (OD) by Jamaica’s authorities on October 19 throughout the annual Nationwide Honours and Awards ceremony at King’s Home.

One of many survivors of the 1970s roots revolution, Massive Youth set the tempo for contemporary toasters with a singular model that made songs like “I Pray Thee”, “S90 Skank”, “Hit The Highway Jack” and “Each Nigger is A Star” dancehall requirements.

These songs additionally maintain the 71-year-old artiste on the street. He’s a daily on the European reggae competition scene; his final run there was in 2019 as a part of the Rockers Tour alongside Kiddus I, Leroy “Horsemouth” Wallace and Lloyd Parks and We The Folks Band.

As for being a recipient of the OD, Jamaica’s sixth highest honour, Massive Youth mentioned, “Mi jus’ really feel good. Nuthin by no means occur earlier than it time.”

Although synonymous with west Kingston, Massive Youth was born Manley Buchanan in Rae City, central Kingston. His introduction to music got here from listening to pioneer deejays like Depend Matchukie and U Roy throughout the early 1960s.

In 1971, he recorded Shifting Man, his first track, which was produced by Gregory Isaacs for Isaacs’ fledgling African Museum label.

The next 12 months, Massive Youth hit the charts for the primary time with “S90 Skank”, produced by Keith Hudson.

He nonetheless data, with a lot of his current productions being with European artistes and producers like Zack Starkey, son of Ringo Starr of The Beatles.

“Mi nonetheless have a vibes an’ di melody remains to be there. A dat folks need,” he mentioned.

Massive Youth’s subsequent album, the aptly titled Cultural Icon, is scheduled for launch late this 12 months.

Different leisure and humanities recipients of the OD this 12 months are singers Eric Donaldson, Cedella Marley and Keith Lyn, actor Oliver Samuels, Deiwght Peters, head of Saint Worldwide modeling company; dancer/choreographer Clive Thompson, music producers Jon Baker and Robert “Bobby Digital” Dixon (posthumously) and British broadcaster David Rodigan.

The Badge of Honour for Meritorious Service will probably be awarded to dramatist/ author Amina Blackwood-Meeks, and Anthony “Chips” Richard, a music trade veteran based mostly in the UK. —HOWARD CAMPBELL

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