Tonight, the upstairs room of Brighton Bar will be transformed into the kind of dance club you are more likely to see in Kingston (Jamaica) or Port of Spain (Trinidad). The songs playing, or rather, thumping out of the speakers, are from Carribean’s hottest artists: Machel Montano, Vybz Kartel, Bounty Killer, I Octane and Aidonia.
These names are perhaps alien to Sydneysiders who are not exposed to dancehall music beyond commercially-acclaimed Sean Paul (Get Busy, Gimme The Light, She Doesn’t Mind) or, if pressed, Beyonce’s slow riddim ‘Baby Boy’ from a while back.
But this is why to the tight-knit community of soca and dancehall lovers in Sydney, the name DJ FASMWA is synonymous to road vibes music. Alongside DJ Nick Toth, More Judgement and Emperor Chin (before he moved overseas), DJ FASMWA (or Fariet to his friends), is one of a handful of deejays who faithfully championed soca, reggae and dancehall to the small crop of Jamaicans, Trinidadians, Trinilankans, Barbadians and Guyanese-Australians who have made Sydney their home.
“It is really cool to be a part of something that is not yet mainstream. But I think it could gradually grow into a massive sub-culture here,” he said.
The life and the music
DJ FASMWA is from the Republic of Suriname, a Dutch Caribbean island-country bordered by French Guiana to the east, Guyana to the west and Brazil to the south. His family moved to Sydney in 1988 and he started DJing in 2006 – just to help out a friend but that blossomed into getting his own gigs.
Since then, he has played at big events and festivals, supporting international artists. He hosts two radio shows, one on Bondi Beach Radio and the other, QZRADIOHD in New York.
Every second Saturday, he would broadcast from Lush Café, right on Bondi beach.
“It is a really cool way to let people hear the music. They always do a little bounce or nod their heads when they walk past the café.”
For inspiration, he listens in to DJ Private Ryan and DJ Stephen & Champion Squad, two of the world’s biggest names in the scene.
Those influences will be evident at his ‘Prescription’ gig tonight.
“My advice to people who have never been to a Prescription event is leave your house ready to dance and be among people who love dancing and love to lime (party).”
“Be prepared to get hooked on some of the songs,” he said.
Party-goers can expect three types of music when they get there: reggae that you can slowly swing your hips to, and soca, which is a calorie-torching, jump-up-jump-down-wave-the-flag Carnivale kinda vibe.
And third, for those who thought Miley Cyrus’ twerking at the VMA was scandalous, wait till you see dem wine (not the alcohol) at Prescription. It’s the kind of down-and-dirty, drop-low, booty-shake, bruk-bruk-bruk-wine move over a dancehall tune that will make you realise that Carribean music has finally arrived – and you’re on the dancefloor enjoying the festival vibe.
September 28, Saturday, from 11pm-late
Brighton Up Bar, 77 Oxford St Darlinghurst
Entry: $5 before 11.30pm, $10 after 11.30pm
Find on Facebook: DJ Fasmwa
For more info: http://fasmwa.blogspot.com.au/