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Blues Dance Sufferers Style

“A commercial break
it’s a soul earthquake
some get funky
soul heads bop to the music
slipping and sliding them could never refuse it
lovers’ dance cheek to cheek
whilst skankers skank the late hour
dripping in sweat like them just get a shower
hold tight each night
this is black music”

Blues dance sufferers style
Levi Tafari
Beating bouncing bubbling
reggae music jumps out from a dread sound system
riding on clouds of smoke
vibrating through the structure of the building

communicating to the people
bringing forth a message of redemption
Bob Marley sings a song with a Rasta connection
brothers and sisters rocking
entwined like a root that keeps growing

Blues dance sufferers style
mi seh de DJ play and de DJ say
‘Guh deh cause yuh wicked and yuh wild
roots rock don’t stop yuh haffe move forward.’

Darkness fills the room
‘ites’, gold and green shines brightly
beaming like the full moon
the vibes a run right the atmosphere gets bubbly
cans of Red Stripe flowing like a never ending stream
the music keeps on growing fulfilling all your dreams
the partaking of the peace pipe the smell of the herb is ire
mixed with curry goat and rice
the kitchen plays its part
and the dance smells nice

Blues dance sufferers style
mi seh de DJ play and de DJ say
‘Guh deh cause yuh wicked and yuh wild
roots rock don’t stop yuh haffe move forward.’

A commercial break
it’s a soul earthquake
some get funky
soul heads bop to the music
slipping and sliding them could never refuse it lovers dance cheek to cheek
whilst skankers skank the late hour
dripping in sweat like them just get a shower hold tight each night
this is black music

Battling two sound system
competition takes place inna the blues dance DJs flashing lyrics rapidly
‘Get flat or get shot’ keep moving
ravers coming and going
checking out the various sessions
nuff dance inna de area
which one fi check it’s a dread decision

Blues dance sufferers style
mi seh de DJ play and de DJ say
‘Guh deh cause yuh wicked and yuh wild roots rock don’t stop yuh haffe move forward.’

All shades of people inna the blues dance dubbing to the sounds of dub
sanctuary inna the ghetto
an escape from commercial clubs
disco are too clinical the DJ takes control
disco lights imposing to the sounds of rock and roll
the music shuts down early just a you get hyped
the night is young and yuh want fi rave
that style is not your type
yuh reach de blues dance late
yuh pay de musical rate
yuh forward through de gate
fi guh listen dub plate
sweet reggae music

Blues dance sufferers style
mi seh de DJ play and de DJ say
‘Guh deh cause yuh wicked and yuh wild
roots rock don’t stop yuh haffe move forward.’
move forward
move forward
inna de blues dance

Levi Tafari
Levi Tafari was born in Liverpool. He is the author of four poetry collections:  Duboetry (1987), Liverpool Experience (1989), Rhyme Don’t Pay (1998). and From the Page to the Stage (2006). His plays have been performed at the Unity Theatre and the Playhouse in Liverpool, and at the Blackheath Theatre in Stafford. He has worked on educational projects running creative writing workshops in schools, colleges, universities, youth centres, prisons and libraries.

Levi Tafari’s musical projects include work with Ghanaian drum and dance ensemble Delado, the Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and with his own reggae fusion band Ministry of Love. He has played with Urban Strawberry Lunch and Griot Workshop and with jazz musician Dennis Rollins.

He was Writer in Residence at Charles University, Prague, and has toured  various countries, including the Czech Republic, Singapore and Jordan. He  has also appeared in many television programmes, including Blue Peter and  Grange Hill, and made a well-received film about Rastafarianism for BBC  television’s Everyman programme entitled The Road to Zion. 

Levi has collaborated extensively with the British Council in many parts  of Europe and the Far East in flagship education and arts projects such  as Britlit and Inclusion and Diversity in Education (INDIE). At present, Levi  is working with 50 European schools in INDIE, delivering creative writing  and communication workshops to young people and sharing his unique and  vibrant poetry with whole school communities.   

© Levi Tafari

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