Peter Metro to make 'splash' in Portland

Peter Metro to make 'splash' in Portland

By Howard Campbell
Observer senior writer

Saturday, May 18, 2019

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Another night, another dance. That could be the title of Peter Metro's memoirs.

For over 40 years, the deejay has performed in every nook and cranny in Jamaica, as well as major cities in the United States and festivals throughout Europe. This evening, he is billed for the Portland Reggae Sound Splash at Innis Bay Beach Club in Portland.

Metro will be part of the Metro Media sound system, which he joined in 1981. In his heyday, he did shows every night; now, he performs if the price is right.

“Anytime a promoter request mi, mi go out an' do mi thing. Is not like before when wi young an' go a dance every night,” he told the Jamaica Observer.

The ebullient Metro is also promoting Banger Phone and Why, two songs that were recently released. Getting airplay for them, he said, has been difficult. Radio was much more receptive back in the 1980s when he was popular and made the charts with songs like Dedicated to You and Police Inna England.

“Remember, mi used to dey pon di soun' every night 'cause Metro was dat hot, so mi promote myself an' di song dem through di soun' system. Now, when yuh gi a disc jockey yuh chune, dem push it one side,” he said.

Metro's moniker is based on his association with Metro Media which has roots in Central Kingston. He is from Trench Town, where he started his career in the late 1970s on a 'area soun' called STATS. Because STATS had periods of inactivity, a friend suggested he go across town and check out the emerging Metro Media.

He heeded that advice and was instrumental in their stocks rising during the 1980s alongside heavyweights like Stur Gav, Gemini, King Jammy's, Black Scorpio and Stone Love. His colleagues at Metro Media in the early days were Ashman, Tanto Metro, Chicken Chest and British deejay Dominic.

Like rival deejays Charlie Chaplin, Josey Wales, General Trees and Admiral Bailey, Peter Metro (real name Peter Clarke) made the successful transition to recording artiste. Dedicated to You was his first hit song, followed by Police Inna England which earned him a following in the United Kingdom and Europe.

“Dat a mi landmark song, it big all over Europe. Di other day mi inna Germany an' di people wouldn't mek mi leave till mi do it,” he said.

Josey Wales, General Trees, Little John, Luciano, Sizzla, Tony Tuff and Danny Dread; the King Jammys and Bass Odyssey sound systems, will also be also be featured at Portland Reggae Sound Splash.

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