Sure, a lot of things are common to these two cultures.... Peace, love, respect and... well... you know... that other thing. Last night I experienced an interesting mix of the two at the Woodstock Reggae Festival.
My brother Leith who turned my oldest onto Dancehall was DJ for the event. I swung by his house prior to the show as he was cutting out and he told me to come down to the show with the rest of the people at his house. I got to hang out with Sister Nancy and some of the other dancehall DJ's eating Jamaican food. When asked if it was too spicy I just chuckled and said white boy dave likes the spice. (somehow that actually is my name among many of my friends). When it was time for them to get ready for the show, I sifted through a bunch of vinyl but the tables were at the show so all i could do is drool at the stuff I wanted to hear.
The show was truly surreal. It was like a Phish concert and the only people I knew were Rastas. Understanding the patwa on the other hand is no small task. So when 5am rolled around and I was chilling trying to understand a full out conversation between a group of Jamaicans, I heard something really familiar... It was Jerimiah saying "dave.... Dave.... DAVE..." and in perfect English asked if I understood a word of what was being said. I said a bit but for the most part no. The conversations (i think) eventually turned to the large population of dread locks in the area. I could sense some surprise from many in the conversation at the large local "rasta" population when from my trance I uttered the word BUT. I believe the next words out of brother moses's mouth were something like ya all 'dem local rasta's white. This was quickly followed by a "no offence" to Token me.
I cannot wait until next year.
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