Tropical House Beat – “Spread out and Work”
Lately I caught wind of a “new” genre of music that sprung up undetected by most while offering chart topping successes to already chart topping artists. “Tropical House” as it is called blends elements of pop, dancehall, soca, bachata and a couple other forms of tropical music presenting “island music” in a more “palatable” form. The music – at least what I have heard so far is really laid back and to be honest is quite groovy.
For those persons who ask – when has a Caribbean genre of music like reggae, soca, or dancehall been used or sampled by popular artists in the US – well I can start naming names….and not just any and any names – big names. And it is not just sampling and borrowing, but the significant appropriation of multiple styles that always bore some resemblance. In one fell swoop (for the majority of Caribbean artists) the need for cross-over has been completely eliminated. Justin Beiber, Adam Levine and a ton of chart toppers are riding the tropical waves. While everyone was criticizing Billboards for awarding Joss Stone and chiding Damien Marley for giving her the formula – R City, Rhianna, and another group of successful pop producers shared the wealth and now its a free for all.
I can only imagine what the pundits have to say. I can already hear echos of the people who always seem to say “It sounds nice, but it don’t have the real vibes”… I hear loathe and resentment in the voices of others who see another ship leaving harbor without them on it…….this time their own ship. For me what comes to mind is voice of my bredren Kamaya explaining how things work in the music business. To loosely paraphrase he said ” You can’t chase this thing following all kinds of style and doing what everyone else is doing….. When everyone is busy making their own sound you keep doing your own thing – eventually it’s gonna come around to your style and you will be there already.” Well this time I am there.