It’s been a year since “Wagwaan Popcaan” transcended into the international platform with “Clarks” and “Dream” and while many were still stuck pondering the playfulness of Vybz’s catchphrase, Popcaan was busy at work improving his lyricism and flow.
Several tracks emerged since the new year with the more matured sound of an artiste venturing out from under his mentor’s wings. Popcaan released “She Gone” off the Yung Riddim (Notnice) about a lover who’ll never get a man like him- “remember every gyal waan Popcaan”- and then coincided the single with “Tun Up the Scheme” and “No Sponsor“, both from Notnice.
Kartel’s entourage has slowly diluted since the peak of its franchise. With Kim, Lisa Hyper, Ryno, Former Manager Cory Todd, Merital Family and most recently producer Notnice and artiste Jah Vinci all leaving the camp to pursue their own projects (often with bitterness and controversy fueled by Kartel). Some are still lurking in the shadow of Jamaica’s most talked about deejay, Kartel, while others, freshly relieved from the troop, are imagining up new ventures. And the struggle to stay afloat will be difficult, not because they don’t have the potential, but because Kartel is an eclipse of a personality with an endless supply of production capabilities.
The young Popcaan, who recently shot down rumors that he too was leaving the Gaza, is quickly developing an artiste rapport with his fans that rivals those of his mentor’s generation. Still Jamaican fan’s grapple with the complexities of dancehall tribalism. Comments from “The City Yeah” youtubes highlight these conflicts within Popcaan’s fan base:
“Popcaan is a talented youth but it all will seem futile when associating with people who favor the devil’s work!!!!!!!! Now all is said and done..Popcaan your talented my youth……” – Black 56104
“Only reason why me listen to gaza cause of popcaan always droppin mad tunes nah lie.. JOP MI SEH Str8 always” -Gucci Thing
Despite the hesitance from the “other” side, Popcaan keeps getting more intriguing. And why not? An evolution on the scene would be welcomed with open arms. You can only listen to the same five deejays so many times before you crave something newer, something less embattled. After all, Popcaan says, “Mad still in Adi city yeah, but me haffi say, I’m kicking it the happy way.”