Lamentable music scene

It's been a damn long time since I could say I was fairly on the ball with the music scene, this course having taken up all of my time, and having lived out in the sticks with JCA for a few months before getting here. Everyone knows that, despite the erosion of quality tunes coming out of the UK Garage scene I've stuck with it and championed the decent vocal tunes that have trickled out of the scene since it's official demise in the public favour a couple of years ago.

Artful Dodger has still been actively producing fantastic mixes and tunes like Midnight Lover (feat Sherman) and that brilliant mix of Rush Hour by fuck knows who, that only I seem to have heard. MJ Cole has recently released his next album, ruff and smooth in equal measure as to be expected. I was still believin that UK Garage had steam even with TJ Cases exiting the scene.

But I think I may have heard the death knell tonight on 1xtra. I tuned in to the top ten in the hope that I could brush up on the latest tunage to get up to speed but fuck me it was absolute shite. It was all the bumpy riddims, playstation shite, bedroom productions. I got bored pretty fast.

It's no secret that with carnival playing such a big part in my life, my taste has veered towards Soca and Dancehall over the last couple of years and I'm not one to stick to such vague concepts as musical genres. The whole essence of garage that hit in 1999 was that it was a dynamic experimental dance music, smooth productions with a phat bassline. But it's lost that dynamism and the DJs and producers in the garage scene have just stopped trying. Soca on the other hand is ripping up the country, with previously unknown Kevin Lyttle (I heard Turn Me On at Notting Hill 2001) and Wayne Wonder burning up the charts.

Dancehall is causing damage all over the place, which was inevitable following the demise of UKG and the popular revival of rap by Eminem, Dre and Snoop. It's been said every year in soca circles following monor chart success, but this year really is the year of Soca. The general public still has to discover real party music and frankly there is no party like a carnival masquerade! With Kevin Lyttle being vital playlist material on most DJ sets from dancehall to garage and Rnb nights as well as Soca nights it's only a matter of time before Rupee's "Tempted to Touch" becomes staple I reckon. Will probably take a couple of years though but I reckon that tune has the potential to put Rupee up there in the consciousness just the same as Lyttle. After that I think the stage will be set for Bunji Garlin, Machel Montano and Destra, Square One and Alison Hinds to smash the place up. They've got the tunes, and now that the public has been softened up by Kevin Lyttle and Wayne Wonder it's almost ready for some real party tunes.

Of course I probably wouldn't appreciate it in truth if everyone got into soca. It's a funny old world when you want people to hear your tunes, but you don't actually want to share. Everyone needs to hear Carl Jacobs and David Rudders "Trini 2 de Bone" but in truth how many people do I want to be singing it? It's all about the masquerade really.
Soca is a way of life, and the chart success of the likes of Kevin Lyttle show the world but a small part of the soca lifestyle. While people sing their lungs out to "Turn Me On" tunes like "No Letting Go" I like to think i feel the spirit of carnival when the beats pulse through me. All right in truth when I hear "No Letting Go" I just think it's crap, but when I remember dancing to "Turn Me On" 2 years ago it affirms my life. It's no throwaway tune that's for sure.

"Trini 2 de Bone" makes me feel alive, 3 Canal's "Enter the Dragon" is a chronicle of life, Bunji's "Snake Oil Gyal" and "Trinidad" are not really songs, they are hard drugs. Is it right to be distributing hard drugs to the masses?
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