New York, NY (Ms. RAINE INC.): After delivery a powerful musical punch at this year’s Brooklyn Music Festival in June, the ‘5 Star General’ Bounty Killer returns to Brooklyn for round two this Labor Day. In celebration of the West Indian-American Carnival weekend, the General and his Alliance lieutenants will storm Brooklyn’s Caribbean City nightclub on Monday, September 7th. After dominating Sumfest and Champions in Action, two of Jamaica’s biggest summer stagings, the Warlord’s return to Brooklyn is highly anticipated.
Billed as the ‘After Parkway Jam,’ the event–taking place immediately after the day-long carnival parade on Eastern Parkway–is a fitting close to the West Indian-American Day Carnival celebrations and the City’s summer concert season.
“What better way to end the summer than to have ‘the General’ shut down Brooklyn,” promoter and popular New York sound system selector Steelie Bashment (known as Brooklyn’s ‘Big Clock’) questions. “Brooklyn was the first place to really embrace Killer. Back in early ’90s, his first hit single ‘Copper Shot’ took off on the streets of BK first. Brooklyn people have continuously shown Bounty Killer mad love over the past 17 years. He’s been a roll this summer, and it is only fitting that he comes back to Brooklyn to lock it down.”
The event is produced by Steelie Bashment, in association with ATM and NSB Promotions.
Bounty Killer and the Alliance at Caribbean City caps off Steelie Bashment’s week-long Brooklyn-centric Carnival celebration that began this week with Alliance member Serani bringing down the house at the borough’s signature Waah Gwan Wednesday party in Club Temptations. The festivities continue with Thursday’s Soca-driven Assume the Position event in Soca Village, and Saturday’s enormous New York Carnival Flag Party at the Tropical Reflections venue.
Rodney Price began performing under the name Bounty Hunter in the late 1980s/early 1990s for area sound systems like Metromedia, Bodyguard, and Stereo Two. Meanwhile, he and his friends hung around King Jammy’s recording studio, hoping to catch a break. Eventually, he met Jammy’s brother Uncle T, who produced his first recordings in 1990.
Still working under the name Bounty Hunter, one of his early tunes, “Dub Fi Dub,” became a huge dancehall hit as a sound system dubplate. He subsequently changed his name to the fiercer and less common Bounty Killer, and accordingly ratcheted up the confrontational tone of his lyrics. He had a breakout year in 1992 with several major hit singles, the biggest of which were “Copper Shot” (also an underground hit in New York) and the anti-informant “Spy Fi Die.” Other songs from this era included “Guns Out,” “New Gun,” “Kill Fe Fun,” “Gunshot Fi Informer,” and “Lodge.” Many of them appeared on Bounty Killer’s debut album, Jamaica’s Most Wanted, which was released in 1993 and later issued internationally under title Roots, Reality and Culture. With the Jamaican government starting to crack down on violent lyrics in live performances, Bounty Killer began to broaden his subject matter into streetwise social commentary, most notably on the perceptive drug-trade chronicle “Down in the Ghetto.” That became the title track of his next album, issued in early 1995. Over the next year, he enjoyed one of his hottest streaks as a hitmaker in Jamaica, as he released one popular song after another: a smash duet with Sanchez called “Searching,” the hip-hop-flavored chart-topper “Cellular Phone,” “Smoke the Herb,” the anti-censorship “Not Another Word,” the maternal tributes “Mama” and “Miss Ivy Last Son,” “Action Speak Louder Than Words,” “Book, Book, Book,” and “No Argument,” the last of which was the title track of another album. In 1996, Bounty Killer released his defining statement, the 20-track double album My Xperience. Featuring several past hits as well as a plethora of new material, My Xperience also boasted guest spots by American hip-hop stars like the Fugees, Raekwon, Busta Rhymes, and Jeru the Damaja, as well as veteran reggae stars like Barrington Levy and Dennis Brown. The single “Hip-Hopera” made the American charts, and the album sold well amid strong reviews, reaching the Top 30 of the R&B chart and ranking as one of the best-selling reggae albums of the year in the U.S. Bounty Killer followed it with the British release Ghetto Gramma (as in “grammar”) in 1997, and spent some time recording with producer Jazzwad.
In 1998, Bounty Killer returned with a high-profile, guest-laden follow-up to My Xperience, titled Next Millennium. This time around, it was issued in America by the generally non-reggae label TVT. Next Millennium heavily featured the new generation of hardcore New York hip-hoppers, including Noreaga, Mobb Deep , Killah Priest, and the Cocoa Brovaz. “Deadly Zone” was featured on the soundtrack of Blade and made the Top Ten on the rap singles chart in America, and the album again sold respectably well among R&B audiences. The follow-up, 1999’s The 5th Element, marked a return to a purer dancehall style.
In late 2001, Bounty Killer made a prominent guest appearance on No Doubt’s international smash “Hey Baby ,” appearing in the video and performing with the group during the 2002 Super Bowl pregame show. Bounty Killer returned to the sprawling ambitions of My Xperience for his next project, the two-volume Ghetto Dictionary set. Issued separately and simultaneously in early 2002, Ghetto Dictionary: The Art of War and The Mystery: The Mystery mixed mostly new material with a few past singles, and were firmly in the raw, hardcore dancehall style that had made his name. Both sold well among reggae audiences, and The Mystery was nominated for a Grammy for Best Reggae Album. Later in 2002, Bounty Killer guested on hip-hop producer Swizz Beatz’ solo debut, G.H.E.T.T.O. Stories, specifically on the single “Guilty.”
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