4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Sound clash

Local reggae booster JFX breaks down San Diego’s reggae culture.
Local reggae booster JFX breaks down San Diego’s reggae culture.

Of the 3500-plus band pages in the Reader’s online Local Music database, around 135 cite reggae as the main part of their sound. That may seem low for a beach city whose shores are lined with tropical-themed nightclubs, but several San Diego–based reggae acts have made their mark on national stages, from Big Mountain (best known for their 1994 cover of Frampton’s “Baby, I Love Your Way”) to Irieside, Mystic Roots, Pepper, the Amalgamated, Slightly Stoopid, Buck-O-Nine, and turntable traders DJ Skizz, DJ Cool Breeze, and DJ JFX.

Sponsored
Sponsored

“There are now several weekly and monthly all-reggae nights at various venues throughout the city, as well as live performances,” JFX reports via email, adding “followers of the movement from outside the city are attending our events and dances.”

According to JFX, local reggae dances kicked off around 1983 at Fidelity Hall, with headliners like Jamaica Touch Sound System, Destiny Roots, Christafari Hi-Fi, and Ram Jam Sound, aka local irie icon Elliott. “Elliott was also the founder of Trade Roots Records, the premier reggae shop for years in San Diego,” notes JFX. “At the end of the ’80s, Rockers nightclub ushered in a new era of hardcore sound systems.”

Rockers may have been the birthplace of a major aspect of sound-system culture: DJ battles called “sound clashing.” JFX explains: “A sound clash differs from a standard or hip-hop DJ battle, as it is not a technical competition. Instead, the DJs can only play ‘dub plates,’ or personalized reggae songs with their DJ name in them, and they are at the mercy of the crowd who determines which sound or DJ earns their right to advance to the next round.... Obtaining these specials from reggae artists for the competition is quite involving and expensive. ”

Plenty of touring reggae acts are hitting town soon, including Morgan Heritage at WorldBeat Center (August 1); Tristan Palma at South Bay Lounge (August 4); Del Mar Racetrack events such as Steel Pulse (August 16) and Ziggy Marley (August 31); and at the Belly Up, Don Carlos on September 7 and Jimmy Cliff on September 13.

You can catch DJ JFX at the first annual 45-Shoot Out Soundclash at Spin, downtown, on September 23.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

The Enemy on McGinty Mountain

"Who am I to dictate who should or should not go hiking?”
Local reggae booster JFX breaks down San Diego’s reggae culture.
Local reggae booster JFX breaks down San Diego’s reggae culture.

Of the 3500-plus band pages in the Reader’s online Local Music database, around 135 cite reggae as the main part of their sound. That may seem low for a beach city whose shores are lined with tropical-themed nightclubs, but several San Diego–based reggae acts have made their mark on national stages, from Big Mountain (best known for their 1994 cover of Frampton’s “Baby, I Love Your Way”) to Irieside, Mystic Roots, Pepper, the Amalgamated, Slightly Stoopid, Buck-O-Nine, and turntable traders DJ Skizz, DJ Cool Breeze, and DJ JFX.

Sponsored
Sponsored

“There are now several weekly and monthly all-reggae nights at various venues throughout the city, as well as live performances,” JFX reports via email, adding “followers of the movement from outside the city are attending our events and dances.”

According to JFX, local reggae dances kicked off around 1983 at Fidelity Hall, with headliners like Jamaica Touch Sound System, Destiny Roots, Christafari Hi-Fi, and Ram Jam Sound, aka local irie icon Elliott. “Elliott was also the founder of Trade Roots Records, the premier reggae shop for years in San Diego,” notes JFX. “At the end of the ’80s, Rockers nightclub ushered in a new era of hardcore sound systems.”

Rockers may have been the birthplace of a major aspect of sound-system culture: DJ battles called “sound clashing.” JFX explains: “A sound clash differs from a standard or hip-hop DJ battle, as it is not a technical competition. Instead, the DJs can only play ‘dub plates,’ or personalized reggae songs with their DJ name in them, and they are at the mercy of the crowd who determines which sound or DJ earns their right to advance to the next round.... Obtaining these specials from reggae artists for the competition is quite involving and expensive. ”

Plenty of touring reggae acts are hitting town soon, including Morgan Heritage at WorldBeat Center (August 1); Tristan Palma at South Bay Lounge (August 4); Del Mar Racetrack events such as Steel Pulse (August 16) and Ziggy Marley (August 31); and at the Belly Up, Don Carlos on September 7 and Jimmy Cliff on September 13.

You can catch DJ JFX at the first annual 45-Shoot Out Soundclash at Spin, downtown, on September 23.

Comments
Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Savon, AbJo, JR Jarris, Circus Vargas, Mardi Gras at SeaWorld

Events February 9-February 11, 2023
Next Article

The $100,000 gamble in Mission Hills

Editor's picks of Reader stories by David Steinman
Comments

I can be lame and so maybe I don't know DJ JFX and I will check him out....but this article should probably mention DJ Carlos Culture as well...He is quite active locally big ups.

July 31, 2013

ya- the original version did include him and other sd sounds (tribe of kings- shotta crew- etc).....Looks like it was edited for print.... peace..

Aug. 1, 2013
Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories Fishing Report — What’s getting hooked from ship and shore From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town The Gonzo Report — Making the musical scene, or at least reporting from it Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Theater — On stage in San Diego this week Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close