Major Lazer emcee, Walshy Fire draws his favorites
Title: Riddimentary Selection Compiled by:Walshy Fire Genre: Reggae Label:VP Records Release Date: 30 April 2021
Noted Jamaican Producer, Selector, and Major Lazer Emcee Walshy Fire has selected 14 tracks from VP Records’ catalog, collected as Riddimentary Selection, set for April 30, 2021 release on all digital platforms, and a 10-track vinyl LP.
“VP Records was the trend setter for reggae and dancehall in the 1990s, and I look at it as a peak time creatively. Not just the sound, but the album covers were a style inspiration as far as what was coming out of Jamaica. I spent a lot of time around VP’s Florida store while I was also a part of Black Chiney sound, as a youth selector, long before I joined Major Lazer. They were always very welcoming. VP has been a part of my journey, so it was easy to pick favorites out of a vast catalog. These tracks show both sides of the music, reggae and dancehall, and I love it all.”
Artists include Beres Hammond, Buju Banton, Garnet Silk, Beenie Man, and Bounty Killer, and Cocoa Tea, among others, touching some of reggae and dancehall biggest tracks from the 1990s and early 2000s. The Riddimentary Selection release is accompanied by a 45-minute DJ mix by Walshy Fire.
The Cocoa Tea classic “Good Life” from the collection is being made into an animated video by illustrator and animation specialist Jenille Brown, which will be the first video ever for this Reggae Classic track. An alternate mix and dub mix of “Good Life” from the 1993 VP/Xterminator 12-inch single will be released digitally for the first time, featuring Sly & Robbie and the Firehouse Crew. The song was produced by Philip “Fatis” Burrell for Xteminator Productions.
The release comes roughly 10 years after Riddimentary – Diplo Selects Greensleeves.
Walshy Fire, born Leighton Walsh, is a producer, MC, and DJ. Since 2011, he has been a member of the supergroup Major Lazer (currently with Diplo and Ape Drums). During his tenure with Major Lazer, he has been instrumental in raising the group’s credibility in the reggae and dancehall worlds, bringing the cache of his Jamaican heritage to the group’s blend of sounds and presentation style. In turn, Major Lazer has been a key force in the globalization of Caribbean music over the past decade by channeling dancehall, reggae, soca, zouk, etc. to EDM (electronic dance music) audiences, including the massive 2015 hit “Lean On” feat. MØ.
Walshy Fire and Major Lazer were responsible for helping break Chronixx with the 2011 mixtape Major Lazer Presents: Chronixx & Walshy Fire – Start A Fyah.
Walshy Fire co-produced Koffee’s breakthrough hit “Toast” in 2018 and “Throne” from her debut EP, for which he received a Grammy Award.
Walshy Fire is currently a key tastemaker in Caribbean music, with a social media following of several hundred thousand globally, including strong audiences in Brazil and Costa Rica.
Walshy Fire’s solo album Abeng was released by Mad Decent to rave reviews in 2019. His latest production to be released is another joint effort with Izy Beats, Naomi Cowan’s “Energy,” which will be followed by year-long schedule of singles leading to an album. Walshy Fire’s own follow-up album to Abeng will be released by the end of 2021.