Beenie Man claims he created Zimbabwean Dancehall and coined the name: "Zim-Dancehall, a me meck it enuh. A me name it too"

Jamaican Dancehall artist Beenie Man says he created Zim-Dancehall, the local version of Jamaican Dancehall in Zimbabwe. He was discussing Jamaican musicians' impact on the African continent and his experiences in the Motherland during a Radio Jamaica interview with Two Live Crew, Dahlia Harris and Christopher “Johnny” Daley during the programme last Friday, 17 November 2023. 

It was during this conversation that he highlighted his pioneering contribution to the creation of Zim-Dancehall. "Zim-Dancehall, a me meck it enuh. A me meck it. A me name it too – Zim-Dancehall." he said. Beenie shared that when he was in Zimbabwe, he met local artists who wanted to do Dancehall but didn't know how. He guided them, helped them in the studio, and named the genre Zim-Dancehall.

There has been a debate about who coined the term Zim-Dancehall. Some believe it was Slaggy Yout, a UK-based DJ. However, Beenie Man claims he created it during his time in Zimbabwe.

Beenie Man and Winky D

Beenie Man visited Zimbabwe in 2010 and collaborated with Winky D in 2017 on a song titled "My Woman" off the Gombwe Album. 

Regarding the term Zim-Dancehall, Slaggy Yout is described as a versatile DJ who founded Black Scorpion Sound System in Zimbabwe and later moved to the UK. He created the Zim-Dancehall brand in 2006.

Scholars of Zim-Dancehall suggest that local youth started imitating Jamaicans after exposure to mainstream Dancehall. Second-generation Zim-Dancehall artists often use a local version of Jamaican patois in their songs, while the first generation used vernacular or formal English.

In May 2021, The Guardian reported that Zim-Dancehall was one of the fastest-growing genres in Zimbabwe. Local musicians mainly use Shona, and recently, some Ndebele singers have also emerged.

What do you think about Beenie Man's claims? Let me know in the comments!

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Mungwadzi Godwin

twitterinstagramI like sharing positive stories about Zimbabweans at home and abroad. I also write articles on Personal Finance, Fashion, Music, and Tech. Let's connect!

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