Ini Kamoze

From Academic Kids

Ini Kamoze (EYE-nee ka-MO-zee; IPA ) is one of the few raggamuffin performers to have been successful both in roots reggae and the modern style. Described as a "pencil thin....disentangled....six-foot vegetarian." at the outset of his career, Kamoze's initial releases had moderate success in Jamaica - enough success to land him on tours with such luminaries as Yellowman and Half Pint. By 1988, however, Kamoze had effectively disappeared from the music scene following lukewarm reactions to his intermittent releases.

In 1994, Kamoze burst back onto the scene with a harder sound and the song which would become his signature - "Here Comes The Hotstepper". Adopting his nickname from the song title, Kamoze would become known as the "Hotstepper", from the Patois for a man on the run from the law. The infectious song found its way onto several soundtracks, including the fashion-industry satire, "Pret A Porter". The resulting video featured a much more solid Kamoze and the obligatory scantily-clad women for this genre of music. "Hotstepper" still remains one of Dancehall Reggae's more well-known hits, with its call-and-response chorus of "Here come de hotstepper - MURDERER - I'm de lyrical gangsta - MURDERER" lighting up clubs worldwide. "Here Comes The Hotstepper" remains Kamoze's only US #1 hit (see Hot 100 No. 1 Hits of 1994).

Kamoze's career after this high-water mark features the album "Lyrical Gangsta" which, while it does not match the heights of "Shocking Out" (the comeback album), is nonetheless a solid listen.

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