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Mr Vegas.

THE TIME IS RIGHT, and ladies getting wild on the dance floor. Mr Vegas takes center stage at Jamaica Gold in LA, and over 2,000 people are out on a Sunday night to see the man who busted onto the international dancehall reggae stage with the superstar anthem "Heads High (Kill 'Em with It)." The JA-based Mr Vegas is in his second home, Los Angeles, to promote his hot new album Pull Up on Delicious Vinyl. The album features collaborations with Foxy Brown, Alozade, Barrington Levi, Sasha, and Hollow Tip, all dropping heat over the hottest dancehall rhythms in the game. We caught up with Mr Vegas right before the show to talk about the new album, his ongoing battle with Lil' Jon's Miami-based Reggaeton artist Pitbull, and how Mr Vegas looks set to blow up to even bigger proportions in the USA. Pull Up, big up to all the Jamaican massive. Exclusive.

So what you doing in L.A?

I'm always in LA. My label is here. I'm out on the road promoting; my album just came out. I'm like water, I flow everywhere. I got friends in this town. Let's talk about the new album.

Well, it's called Pull Up, out on Delicious Vinyl through Interscope records. Right now we just grinding, promoting the original Mr Vegas Pull Up joint. On the road doing our thing, that is until Pitbull stole it from me and did his thing with "Culo." Oohhh!

Yeah, man, all the pirates must draw down ya antenna. Mr Vegas is on ya waves.

Who produced the album?

I work with Vada Nobles, who produced Lauren Hill. This album is a bunch of producers like Skatta from Jamaica, South Rakkas Crew on the Red Alert riddim. I actually took "Coolie Dance" to the street and blew it up all through last year, 'cause I knew it was going to be a big riddim. Pull Up got 1,000 spins on the radio until the pirate Pitbull came along and stole-it. You were the first cat to take "Coolie

Dance" to the street?

Definitely, I've been on the road doing it. Now that rack is everywhere.

So, what, Pitbull is a biter?

Well, yes he is a dog. But what happened was, when I on the road doing Pull Up, all Latino people asked me to do "Culo," which is the Latin version. So I did that for the Latino people. Then I saw Pitbull at the Low Rider convention and he asked if I would hook him up with the producer, which is cool, that's me, I want to see different artists doing their thing; that's dancehall. In dancehall everyone do their own style of song, as long as the riddim is hot. We have our own style, that is what is unique about dancehall. Like "Heads High," you have General Degree, Spragga Benz, and me all doing hot styles over the same riddim. Or like "Coolie Dance" you got Elephant Man, Beenie Man, and me doing our thing on the same riddim--but we original. I work with young artists; I want to see new artists come up. But I didn't know that Pitbull was going to come and bite my whole style, use my melodies, choruses--and then use Lil' Jon to bully, 'cause radio stations going to play that when they hear Lil' Jon on the track. That cat bit my whole style. That's music and that's life. I've been here before and I ain't going to cry about it. I ain't no one-hit-wonder, ya know. Pitbull is a biter; I've been doing a survey. Pitbull do "Welcome to Miami," which is a bite off Ludacris' "Welcome to Atlanta." Pitbull say he reps 305 Miami, but I know people in Miami don't want no pirate representing them. They want real dudes, real original cats.

Back to the album, I think it's my best album. It's one for the ladies.

You got Foxy Brown on there too?

Yeah. We go way back, she is my friend. She go through a lot of struggle, too, like Mr Vegas. She is one of the first female rap artists to do dancehall and promote it. I'm talking to do something with Baby Cham and Spragga Benz, and help give them a buzz.

Big up to Fox. One love. So what rhythm tracks you got on the album?

"Dancehall Rock," "Coolie Dance" and "Red Alert," and we got a lot of exclusive riddims. 'Cause now dancehall is getting so big that anyone can get access to those riddims and producers. We got a bunch of exclusive riddims.

What singles are dropping from the album?

"Tamale" is the next single. "Never Leave You Lonely" is going to drop on the "BamBam" fiddim. We going to 2005 and make it new. And Pull Up is out, of course; get the original from Mr Vegas.

And there are some killa Mr Vegas vinyl remixes cracking in the clubs too?

Yeah. On the West Coast DJ Trasha and Dom P Da Chemist dropped killa 12 of "Tamale" and Pull Up hip-hop blend remixes over "Goodies," "Headsprung" and "Real Gangstaz." And on the East Coast, Fatman Scoop dropped a 12 of "Tamale" with Fat Joe.

Shout outs?

To all of the people supporting dancehall worldwide, the Jamaican Massive, IN Massive, everybody out there.
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Author:Woods, Shelby
Publication:Thrasher
Date:Feb 1, 2005
Words:890
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