Words by Jason “J-Rockaz” Orford
A little more than a month ago, I caught a stageshow in my home town of East Flatbush, Brooklyn held at Nazareth High School (Go Kingsmen!) and organized by CPR (The Coalition to Preserve Reggae Music)–a nonprofit that works to preserve the artform and its traditional message of healing and unity. The star of the night was the Legendary Jamaican Deejay Big Youth a.k.a. Jah Youth. I shook hands with the veteran artist and met his son, who is gearing up for his own musical career. In the 1978/79 cult classic film Rockers, which prophetically showcased Rastafarian culture and its musical ambassadors–including the late Gregory Isaacs–Youth has a cameo where, smiling with his golden grill and slapping a soulful five, he delivers these words of encouragement to the protagonist, (Leroy ‘Horsemouth’ Wallace, another legendary talent), “Blow the Big Guy’s mind!” A brief moment, the shot nevertheless conveys the spirit of upliftment–familiarly known as a big up or a bless up–that is at the heart of the film and the movement. (Read more and watch the trailer after the jump).