On August 21st, VP Records unleashes Kabaka Pyramid’s update of Michigan & Smiley’s 1979 “Real Rock” anthem, “Nice Up The Dance.”
Incorporating original lyrics and bringing the song into a contemporary context, the song will be supported by a visually rich and celebratory video shot in Jamaica and produced by Davida-Mae Chambers and directed by 300K, which will launch on Kabaka Pyramid’s YouTube channel on Tuesday, August 25, 2020 at 11 a.m. Jamaica time, 12 noon in New York. “Jeremy Harding linked me to do a cover of ‘Nice Up The Dance’ by Michigan and Smiley, a classic in early dancehall music. I loved the idea and he did over the classic ‘Real Rock Riddim’ from scratch, and I sang a lot of the original song’s lyrics with two added original verses of mine,” says Kabaka Pyramid.
“Nice Up The Dance” is taken from the forthcoming Jeremy Harding produced Dancehall Anthems; a collection of new recordings of classic reggae and dancehall songs. Dancehall Anthems features Kabaka Pyramid, Sean Paul, Beenie Man, Agent Sasco, Wayne Marshall, Runkus, Blvk H3ro, Bugle, and Royal Blu among others, taking on classic material from Yellowman, Michigan & Smiley, Ken Boothe, Tenor Saw, Papa San, Louie Culture, et al. The first track from the album was Beenie Man’s take on Yellowman’s “Zungguzungguguzungguzeng.”
Kabaka Pyramid is one of the most celebrated and versatile MCs of the Reggae Revival movement, breaking out with the popular 2017 album Kontraband, produced by Damian Marley. Pyramid’s work shows a generational interest in hip-hop, integrating the MC’s flow with classic reggae and contemporary dancehall rhythms. He first came to the public’s attention when featured on Chronixx’s “Mi Alight” in 2013, a track that has grown in stature over the years as Reggae Revival anthem. “Mi Alright” was released the same year as Kabaka Pyramid’s debut album Lead The Way, on his own Bebble Rock label. His top tracks to date include “Can’t Breathe” and “Well Done” from Kontraband, and he was heard on VP’s acclaimed We Remember Dennis Brown, where he joined Chronixx, Jesse Royal, Kelissa, Iba Mahr and others on an update of Brown’s “Rasta Children.”