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Seaview music goes abroad

Observer senior writer

Friday, July 16, 2021

IF Trench Town is the cradle for roots-reggae, then Seaview Gardens can lay claim to being dancehall's nursery. In fact, Patrick Richards describes that community as “the dancehall capital of the world”.

The fledgling music producer is head of Abroad Records, a company that launched three years ago in Seaview, a sprawling housing scheme along Spanish Town Road. It recently got off the mark with two songs by artistes from the area — Mind Game by I View and Obsession by Jaytrillan.

Obsession is a joint venture with One Syndicate Records, an independent label in the United Kingdom.

“Wi waan tek di thing to di max! Grammy level. No mediocrity,” said Richards.

To help get Abroad Records off the ground, he is looking to home-grown acts for assistance. A veteran of the Seaview dance scene, I View has been recording for 10 years while Jaytrillan is one of the newer artistes.

Senior Killa, a protégé of the Scare Dem Crew, is also part of the Abroad Records camp, as well as upcoming deejay Villin.

The 28 year-old Richards was born in 1993 when the dancehall arena in Seaview was buzzing. Shabba Ranks, who was raised there, won the second of his Grammy Awards that year; months later, Bounty Killer, another Seaview artiste, made his debut at Sting.

Richards' father, Patrick senior, was also an artiste who “never get him break”. He never followed his old man's path as a performer, choosing academics and sports while a student at St Andrew Technical High School (STATHS).

He played Manning Cup football as a striker at STATHS and turned out in the Super League for several teams including Greenwich Farm, Mountain View, Shortwood and Seaview Gardens.

With funding from his father, Richards began setting up Abroad Records in 2018. He plans to follow-up Mind Game and Obsession with the Grave Yard 'riddim' in August.

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