“We used to cut school and just listen to music all day,” says Livewire of his youth in Grenada.
Although the small Caribbean island has a strong musical heritage of its own, he was heavily inspired by US and Jamaican music. “We had BET in Grenada,” he laughs, “but the boat workers used to come back with tapes from Jamaica all the time, too.” And this is how the musical journey began for Livewire, who appeared on Iswayski Says Ur Good Bread alongside vocalists Lavaman and Dilecious.
“Grenada is very beautiful and peaceful,” he says, “There’s a reason they call it paradise.” But he saw better opportunities for music here in New York. So he moved to Flatbush when he was 18, following his mother, to further pursue that interest in dancehall, rap, soca, pop, and everything in between. None of his other friends lived here at the time, so he’d make CDs and sell them on the street. This was how he met other artists at first, but after Hurricane Ivan hit in 2004, many “Greenz”, as they call themselves, fled the damaged island and moved to the US.
Now there’s a whole team of Grenadian artists residing in Brownsville, Brooklyn, called Vibez Package. Livewire, Lavaman, and Dilecious are all part of the crew, as well as JRE and Yung Image, who we’ve also featured here on the blog and on /rupture’s radio show. They often throw summer parties for the expats in the area at an outdoor spot off Eastern Parkway, and last weekend they had an all white boat party. Lavaman still resides in Grenada, where he was recently crowned Carnival Monarch, and Dil is actually from the Bronx, but is married to a Grenadian.
Show some love and bump their music.