Mon | Mar 30, 2020

DJ Khaled adds soca, dancehall to new video

Published:Thursday | September 29, 2016 | 12:00 AMCarolyn Sinclair
Mavado (left) and DJ Khaled.

When it comes to finding that rhythm and beat that intrigue and captivate, or adding a much-needed flavour to a track waiting to roll off an American hitmaker's mixing board, the Caribbean seems to be the go-to place for that 'something extra' lately.

American hip-hop star DJ Khaled wasted no time in adding a bit of the Caribbean feel to his latest song, Nas Album Done, featuring Nas, on his recently released studio album, Major Key.

In his almost nine-minute-long video, the hip-hop star kicked off the short film with Mavado's song, Progress, short skits packed with Jamaican creole, featuring popular Jamaican artiste/actor Louie Rankin (from the movie Shottas) and topped it off with a minute-long soca scene involving females dressed in Carnival costumes dancing to three-time Antiguan Soca Monarch winner, Ricardo Drue's Vagabond.

Mavado is no stranger to DJ Khaled's circle as the seasoned entertainer is signed to the hip hop artiste's We The Best Music Group, but for soca singer Ricardo Drue, a call requesting the use of a segment of his song for the video came as a "great opportunity", not just for him, but for soca music.

The Antigua-born and Trinidad-raised Drue expressed how humbled and grateful that call from DJ Khalid's camp left him feeling.

"DJ Khalid making use of my record, Vagabond, in his latest video was just a great opportunity for me. But not only was it a great opportunity for me, but it's a great opportunity for soca, and I am just humbled and pleased that our record was the one that was used. There are so many other great soca songs in the world that he could have used, but he chose to use this one."




With royalty payments and copyright details playing a major part in how artistes are compensated for their work in today's music industry, Drue said he felt a sense of "respect"; when contacted by Khalid's team for the use of his music.

"The mere fact that he reached out to us to make sure that he got everything cleared, to make sure that everything was done the right way, is another stepping stone to showing that there is some kind of respect in the industry."

Drue, who performed in Jamaica at Sunnation's Sunset Cocoa J'ouvert in November last year, says he and his team are happy for the added exposure the opportunity has brought them.

"Since he has released it on both Snapchat and on his video, it has gone viral twice. We have received numerous calls, we've seen people reposting, we've seen the tags. We're just pleased, we're just happy, and when I say 'we', I mean me and my team. We are going to take this opportunity and mould it into something other than just Vagabond being in a Nas video or a DJ Khalid video. For us, this is just a next step on to something great," Drue said.

With Carnival 2017 in Trinidad and Tobago around the corner, and his two latest songs - ID (Stamp Yuh Name) and Drink Up, featuring King Bubba, rotating on the airways, Drue says his team is feeling overwhelmed.

The album, Major Key, is the ninth studio album from DJ Khaled. it features several popular American entertainers, including multiple Grammy-award winner Kendrick Lamar.