On Saturday, October 21st 2000, Geel, Belgium - well known to many reggae fans due to its annual reggae festival - was the place to be for what was announced as the "Another Level 2000" event featuring Jamaican artists Jigsy King, Singing Soldier, Orthodox, Doberman and Galmore alongside the Belgian rappers from R.O.C. Sound and the sound systems Boombastic, Far West Crew and Bong Productions, the latter also being the promotors of this dancehall event. When we arrived we were told that Doberman and Galmore had to stay in Jamaica because of visa problems (something that seemingly happens more often as also renown deejay Yellowman encoutered these problems recently), but the other announced Jamaican artist were definitely present at Youth Centre "De Boogaard".

Star of the evening Jigsy King and fellow artists Singing Soldier and Orthodox were scheduled to appear on stage around the midnight hour. In the meantime the selectors and mc's of the sound systems, and after that the two rappers of R.O.C. Sound, entertained the dancehall massive, warming them up for what they all were waiting for. Because the venue was small the crowd was slightly small too, but what they lacked in size they definitely made up for in enthusiasm when Jigsy King took the stage kicking off with a killer tune entitled "As It Dun Load It Back", which was delivered over the classic "Stalag" riddim! The lighters went up in the air and whistles were blown.

Warming-up by Far West Crew.
From the very first tune - done with that typical gritty delivery - it was obvious that Jigsy King was the real star, with Singing Soldier and Orthodox playing the supporting role. Jigsy's experience as a rather successful recording artist and stage performer makes that this deejay not only knows how to rule the proceedings on stage, but that he also knows how to keep his audience involved. Jigsy King delivered an energetic stage performance, sometimes giving a little room to Singing Soldier and Orthodox (the latter leaving the stage quite some time before the other artists made clear they were about to round off the show) to showcase their skills and talent.

Rapper from R.O.C. Sound.

From left to right : Orthodox, Jigsy King, Singing Soldier.

It was with such crowd pleasers like "Give Me The Weed", "Work", Slaughter House" and "Butterfly" that Jigsy King got his audience going and set the place on fire! The deliverance of the "Butterfly" - the title of the combination tune with Tony Curtis and also the name of a dance - was a good opportunity to get some girls on stage to explain and show them how to do the "Butterfly". Some hot bubbling followed and according to the enthousiastic response of the audience, they enjoyed this part of the show to the max. Then it seemed as if Jigsy King wanted to put an end to his showtime, but he asked the rappers from R.O.C. Sound on stage to perform alongside him. After that the audience was treated to an unexpected performance by Geniuz from Dutch Champion sound system RUNN Sound. This guy surely knows how to excite an audience, so it was almost predictable that "lighters in the air" would be part of the people's response.

Jigsy shows the girl how to dance the "Butterfly".

Another "Butterfly" effort.
After the show we were able to have a nice chat with Jigsy King, who proved also an energetic and entertaining conversationalist. Jigsy King, real name Errol King, was born in Kingston, Jamaica, in 1970. In the late eighties Jigsy, together with his good friend Tony Curtis, appeared on Courtney Cole's talent show at the Roof Night club in Ocho Rios, situated at the North Coast of the Island. While Tony Curtis won the singers part of the contest, Jigsy was regarded the best deejay. Like so many before him Jigsy King started to develop his deejay skills further by chanting on various local sound systems. Then the time had come for a recording career, so Jigsy King started to voice tunes at various studios with a number of producers in Jamaica, among them King Jammy's son John John and also producer Courtney Cole. And although the first brought him his first dancehall hit "Cock Up And Ride", which lyrics - "Push out your foot and do the bogle dance" - and riddim inspired a provocative dancing style - it were the latter as well as engineer/musician/producer Barry O'Hare who played an important role in Jigsy's breakthrough.

Singing Soldier.

Jigsy King.

Singing Soldier & Jigsy King inna combination stylee.
Courtney Cole recorded a number of singles with Jigsy King including a combination tune with Tony Curtis entitled "Butterfly". The song became a big hit in Jamaica and abroad. Also "Work", a combination with Barrington Levy, proved very popular and became a huge international hit. The hit tunes kept coming although it lasted until the Courtney Cole produced "Give Me The Weed" that Jigsy King was able to generate similar enthusiasm as with the aforementioned combination tunes. Barry O'Hare created the riddim, Jigsy King voiced it, and then Cole took it to Donovan Germain who utilized the riddim for versions by Wayne Wonder, Buju Banton and Tony Rebel, to name a few. Jigsy's first album "Have To Get You" contains no less than five number one hits, all produced by Courtney Cole. Jigsy has founded his own "Flatbridge" label, following in the footsteps of so many Jamaican artists, who all want to have control over every aspect of their output. Artists who will appear on his label are his long-time friend Tony Curtis, Prezident Brown, Orthodox, and probably Lexxus and Elephant Man. Of course, Jigsy King himself will also put out his tunes on his own imprint. For one of his forthcoming singles, "If Are Nuh But", he has teamed up with Bounty Killer. When he tells us about this tune - which is over a bouncing riddim, built by "Teetimus" - Jigsy gets more and more enthusiastic and starts to perform the tune, doing both his and Bounty Killer's part. Then it's time to say goodbye, which ends with a heartfelt embrace from a fine artist and warmhearted person.

Selective discography.

Jigsy King Albums :

  • HAVE TO GET YOU - VP Records
  • ASHES TO ASHES - VP Records
  • LOAD IT BACK - VP Records
Compilation Appearances :

  • X Rated Gang Vol. 1 - RUNN Records
  • More Than Just Dancehall - RUNN Records
  • Rooftop Skanking - RUNN Records
  • Mash Up The Place! The Best Of Reggae Dancehall
  • Ever Ready - VP Records
  • Reggae Gold 1995 - VP Records
  • Killa Sound
  • Total Togetherness Vol. 4 - VP Records
  • Corduroy Celebration - VP Records
  • Dancehall Massive - November Records
  • Little Sound Boy - VP Records
  • Hip-Hop Reggae
  • Dancehall Kings Vol. 1 - TVT-Blunt
  • Producer's Trophy: Roof International - Outa!/Hightone Records
  • Smoke The Herb - VP Records
  • Strictly The Best Vol. 13 - VP Records
  • Reggae Hits Vol. 14 - Jet Star
  • Ragga Mania Vol. 1 - RAS Records
  • Ragga Mania Vol. 2 - RAS Records
  • Ragga Mania Vol. 3 - RAS Records

Article & Discography: Teacher & Mr. T.

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