DANCEHALL selector Ricky Trooper narrowly escaped being charged by the police after a minor altercation at Sugar Minott’s birthday celebration at the late singer’s base on Robert Crescent in Kingston.
The event was dubbed Sugar Minott’s Day Tribute.
“The problem started ‘cause one ah dem [police] dragged the wire out of my laptop to stop the sound from playing, and me and him ketch up ‘cause I told him he cannot do that,” explained Ricky Trooper, whose real name is Garfield McKoy.
“The policeman say when they came to the venue, nobody acknowledged their presence so him show him authority and drag the wire out a my laptop. When you disconnect the wire like that, it send a loud signal to the speakers that can damage them or even cause damage to patrons’ ears, but them just do them thing. And, a permit was granted for the event,” he added.
Ricky Trooper was detained and reportedly brought to the Cross Roads Police Station. However, it appears the brouhaha was eventually resolved.
“But no charges were laid against me; we just reason it out and it dead deh so,” he declcared.
Ricky Trooper said that Little John delivered a marquis performance that demolished the event.
“When Little John hit the stage, the whole place mash up. The event was good. We had great performances from Errol Dunkley, Horace Andy, Mikey General, Aza Lineage, Hawk Eye, and Sugar Minott’s kids gave a good account of themselves,” he said.
Billed for the occasion were Blaw Minott, Sizzla Kalonji, Errol Dunkley, Earl “Chinna” Smith & Inna Da Yard, Pashon Minott, Tampanae, Egg Nogg, The Silvertones, Nana EQ, Shemana, Daddy Shark, Ashanty Minott, Kerry Lopez, Kimio Reid, Kenneth Culture, Benzly Hype, Horace Andy, Mikey General, and Horace Martin.
Trooper believes that the Government should recognise the contributions of Sugar Minott by conferring him with a National Honour Award.
“Sugar Minott is rated as the godfather of dancehall because he is the one who gave the most artistes in Jamaica a chance to become stars — example Tenor Saw, Yami Bolo, Tristan Palmer, Little John, Colorman, Tony Rebel, Garnett Silk, and the list goes on,” said Ricky Trooper.
“He should be honoured because artistes who he helped to become stars have been honoured and he is the person who helped them to reach that stage in life as a producer and with the famous Youthman Promotion sound system which he built to nurture the young, upcoming dancehall talents in his time,” reasoned Ricky Trooper, a former lead selector at Kilimanjaro.
Sugar Minott was one of reggae’s hottest acts during the 1980s. He had a big hit song in the United Kingdom in 1981 with a cover of Michael Jackson’s Good Thing Going at the height of the lovers’ rock craze in that country.
Sugar Minott had numerous chart-riders including Herbman Hustling, Lover’s Race, No Vacancy and Tune In.
As a producer, he helped develop artistes such as Tristan Palmer, Little John, Tenor Saw, Junior Reid, Yami Bolo, Garnet Silk and Steve Harper (aka Shalom) through his Youthman Promotions label.
He died in July 2010 from a heart-related illness. He was 54.
Ricky Trooper is no stranger to controversy with his brash, take-no-prisoners attitude. He gained nationwide notoriety when a video emerged online during which the selector was shown waving what he said was a prop pistol while shouting: “Put it pon YouTube”.