Missing Dynamite

When Ms. Dynamite hit the scene in 2002, there was such an atmosphere of hope in the air.

A Little Deeper was an incredible album, chockablock with hard beats and powerful lyrics and coming out at a time when there was a distinct lack of smart female rap tracks on record store shelves. And on top of all of that, the girl could sing. It was like a nouveau Lauryn Hill was emerging from across the pond.

Just about every track on her first album was a winner. Put Him Out was a dump-that-loser track that was catchier than Eve’s Love is Blind.

Being the Caribbean chick that I am, I always loved Boo, her patois-laden, bass-heavy ragga track from that first album. “Rah-rahted, bomba-bomboclaated…” wicked tune. And she can spit live, too, which I especially admire.

Dynamitee was on repeat in my CD player for like a solid month, and don’t get me started on It Takes More. That song came out five years ago, and it’s just as sharp and relevant now. This chick was raising awareness about blood diamonds long before Kanye and Nas. I still think about that track whenever I accidentally wind up listening to mainstream radio-hop — “it takes more to amuse a girl like me, so much more to confuse a girl like me.”

2002 was Ms. Dynamite’s year. After winning many British music awards, Ms. Dynamite fell off. Hard.

She had a baby boy in 2003, and retreated from the public eye to raise her son. Then a string of bad luck seemed to plague the socially-conscious artist. She returned with a follow-up album, Judgment Days, which was not well recieved despite some decent tracks — listen to the title track on her MySpace.

I adored When I Fall in Love. It combines so many of my favorite things – old school Jamaican music, dancehall moves, and intelligent lyrics. Unfortunately, Dynamitee got caught up in some cop drama that led to her being arrested and the single was canceled.

It appears that her official website hasn’t been updated since October 2006, but she started working on some new material; a garage compilation called A Little Darker. Then she participated in some British reality show called The Race, and got in a car accident that resulted in her being hospitalized overnight. And that’s the end of that chapter for now.

I am rooting for her, and I sincerely hope that her career doesn’t go the way of so many artists who don’t fit into the cookie-cutter music industry machine.

Fingers crossed that Ms. Dynamite emerges with a musical explosion bigger and brighter than ever. Until then, When I Fall in Love is my jam of the day. Enjoy!

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Comments

  1. YES!
    YES!
    YES!

    Me dear, Miss Dynamite-tee-hee was also blasted from my CD player too.
    A beautiful Black Londoner who’s a super cool person as well.

    Glad you wrote about her.

    ***RUNS off to play Miss Dynamite-tee-hee & pick & pack orders***

  2. Bella,

    Once again, you have done it. I love this CD. I haven’t played the CD in a couple of years. Thanks for reminding me of this. :D

  3. I’m ashamed t’say as a fellow brit i forgot about her too. Its funny when we get these wonderful artists emerge from the margins they get chewed up and spat out. And there is this (i think) mistaken belief that they have to be shipped out to the US to ‘really’ make it big. Well i saw joss stone at this years brits award and what’s happened to her shes all faux americano. I only hope amy winehouse stays put in blighty at least until she sorts herself out.

    thanks for reminding me of Ms Dynamite lets hope she continues her art

  4. well i dont know about those urban dictionary definitions of rahted and bomboclaat (i feel nervous just writing it). My mother would have given me a good hiding if i ever used those words. I think for old timey Jamaicans they were very serious swear words. Nowadays i guess its true younger people use them more freely. In the novel Island Songs by Alex Wheatle (beautiful book about the lives of rural Jamaicans)the word ‘bloodclart’ (which i think the word bombaclaat is derived from)describes the cloth that was used to mop up the blood off a slaves back after a beating. It is curious how language evolves.

  5. I really like ms dyamite especially when she came out with that first single “it takes more ” and after that the chill song “Miss Dynamite-tee-hee”and then nothing >>> or apparantley she got pregnant thats the last thing I heard about her . ( Its shame she could have gone very far she so good and realler then the most artist out there today ) Anyways I really like the new song . Hope she comes back BIg time.

  6. Ohhh Ms. Dynamite, I love her! I saw her on Saturday Night Live my freshman year of college and bought her CD 2 days later. “Afraid 2 Fly” and “It Takes More” are still on steady rotation on my iPod. I always wondered what happened to her. I hope she’s able to bounce back and come out with another awesome CD.

  7. Yay Bella bigging up the Brits! I forgot all about Dynamite. Loved “A Little Deeper” but one of my favourite verses by her has to be on the remix of So Solid Crew’s “They Don’t Know”. You should check it out. “Why dem are watching me? Is it pure jealousy? I don’t wanna, wanna fight tonight….”

  8. Bella,

    Enjoyed video!

  9. I loved that cd. It seems the positive artists always have a harder time getting recognition.

  10. I soooo miss dynamite. She was the only artist of my generation that summed up my thoughts perfectly. She delivered her messages in style and is just too good for the mainstream. So it doesn’t surprise me she’s not around anymore- she was too far ahead of the rest of us.

    Still I know her time will truly come. I think we were just given a taste of what’s really to come..I hope.

    Ms Dynamite, I pray you return

  11. Pity she turned into a moron.

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  1. [...] So you remember back in February I was wondering what Ms. Dynamite was up to? I found out, thanks to one of my new favorite sites — Racialicious. [...]

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