Remembering Red Dragon

Remembering Red Dragon

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

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THE community of Whitehall Avenue along the Red Hills Road in St Andrew was arguably the hottest spot in 1980s dancehall. Deejay Red Dragon was one of the artistes responsible for that.

Red Dragon (given name Leroy May) died at the University Hospital of the West Indies on July 31 at age 49.

His older brother, deejay Michael 'Flourgon' May, told the Jamaica Observer that Red Dragon had been admitted to hospital the previous day.

Flourgon did not give the cause of death, but said 'Dragon' had suffered from hyptertension and heart problems.

"The last time I si him was three weeks ago, an' him neva feel good. Wi know him did sick but neva expect him would die," said Flourgon from New York.

Red Dragon was among several talented artistes who emerged from Whitehall Avenue 30 years ago.

The humorous Hol' a Fresh, done for producer Winston Riley's Techniques label in 1987, paved the way for fellow deejays Flourgon, Daddy Lizard and Buju Banton who cut their teeth on sound systems in the Red Hills Road area.

Hol' a Fresh topped local and ethnic charts in the United States for several weeks. Red Dragon followed up with Agony and Duck which were also popular dancehall songs.

In 1994, he had his biggest success with Compliments on Your Kiss. A dance song done with singers Brian and Tony Gold, it rose to number two on the British national chart.

Health problems -- compounded by a fall from a roof eight years ago -- curtailed his career in the last 10 years.

Leroy 'Red Dragon' May is survived by spouse, three children, three brothers and one sister.

-- Howard Campbell

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