"I'M A lady, I'm not a man, MC is my ambition. I come fi nice up Jamaica. " So declared Sister Nancy, the first female dancehall DJ, who has been described by the Washington Post as a "dominating female voice for over two decades" on the dancehall scene.
The singer/DJ began her career chanting on Prince Norman’s sound system. In 1980, the producer Winston Riley took Nancy into the recording studio for her debut, ‘Papa Dean’. She went on to perform at Reggae Sunsplash and A Dee Jay Explosion, while in 1982 she released the album One Two, which featured the title track, ‘Aint No Stopping Nancy’, ‘Only Woman DJ With Degree’, and ‘Bam Bam’, the latter described by the BBC as a "reggae anthem".
She also recorded a classic rendition of ‘King And Queen’ with Yellowman and has continued performing live, often with her brother on the Jahlove Music Sound System. In 2001, Canadian-American producer Krinjah re-mixed 'Bam Bam', creating a 12" single which began a ragga-jungle revival in America. In 2004, she collaborated with DJ /rupture and Kid 606, and in 2006 with Thievery Corporation. 'Bam Bam' was sampled by Kanye West for his song 'Famous'. It also features in the video game Skate and the soundtrack for the movie Belly.
Sister Nancy plays the Róísín Dubh on Thursday June 7 at 8pm. Tickets are available from www.roisindubh.net; the Ticket Desk at OMG Zhivago, Shop Street; and The Róisín Dubh.