Montego Bay-based deejay Ryme Minister knows that life imitates art and vice versa. He knows only too well the bloody consequences of gun violence. He lost his mother, and three brothers in separate incidents over the last couple of years, so when he sings about killers and death, he is singing about his life.
‘Push Forward’, and the witty ‘Desert Eagles’ are already anthems on the lips of teenagers in the second city.
Born Fabian Sawyers, he grew up with his parents in the tough neighbourhood of Glendevon in Montego Bay, where he attended Glendevon All Age
and then Knockalva High school.
“While I was at Knockalva, I got introduced to music, beating desk, and deejaying to beats. At that time, I used to sing over Bounty Killer songs, till I began to make up my own lyrics. I am inspired by all the deejays I listen to but Bounty Killer who ah just the man, no doubt about that,” he said.
When he left school, Rhyme Minister focussed initially on a career as a dancer, and built up a great reputation as a flashy dresser and competent dancer as a member of the Pink Eye crew.
“We were called the Pink Eye crew because our eyes were always red like a car brake light,” he said, laughing.
It was not until one year afterward that he began to take music seriously.
“When I was in school, mi dance full time and deejay like half ah the time, but mi friends dem say mi can deejay and dance good so I should try deejaying and mi just do it one day. My first single was ‘From Dem Love Talk’ at Crazy Dark studios in Rosemount,” he said.
At that time, he was known in his community as ‘Bugs Crime’ but a chance encounter with Isaiah Laing, promoter of the annual Sting concerts, changed
“I was booked to perform at Sting and Mr. Walker and Mr. Laing told me they were not promoting any crime ting and that I should change my name, and they changed the crime to rhyme and it just shot, everybody love it,” he said.
Although he has not officially signed to any label, he has inked a management deal with the publishing company, Starplus Management.
Montego Bay-based deejay Rhyme Minister knows only too well the terrible consequences of gun violence.