Robert Cooper Photographs What Real Dancehall Looks Like Right Now

“I started listening to dancehall during the late ’80s,” recalls photographer and videographer Robert Cooper, who’s covered the Hartford, CT dancehall scene for some time. “I began photographing dancehall parties and concerts 8 years ago, and began writing about dancehall also, so being able to finally go to Jamaica was a blessing. It took me only about two days photographing at the dances before people started recognizing me and I was a part of the scene.” With plans for an exhibit and a book in the works, Cooper shared some visuals from his first trip exclusively with Boomshots. This selection focuses on Jamaica’s thriving street dance culture, highlighting all the stars on the scene—not just the recording artists. Dancers, selectors, and other colorful personalities all help create the vibe that continues to entertain and inspire the world. Dancehall 2016: This is what it looks like. Photos After The Jump…

BPD_2397 GullyBopGully Bop touches the mic at Mojito Mondays, alongside Tony Matterhorn.

 

BPD_4639 Boss ChickDancehall Queen Latesha at Weddy Weddy.

 

BPD_8262 PotManJoyful Noise: If you’ve ever listened to a dancehall mix and heard an annoying sound like two kitchen pans clanking together, blame the brother on the left, Pan-a-knock. On the right is Sadiki Snowman, who blows a horn when a big tune buss the dance.

 

BPD_2724 SizzlaPritty Di General with Sizzla Kalonji.

 

BPD_3292 Tanto BlacksReal Rich! Tanto Blacks is one of the new artists making waves in Jamaica.

 

BPD_3825 Killer and TwinsThe warlord Bounty Killer with his artists (twin sisters) the K Queens.

 

BPD_4016 Tom CruiseDon Andre, an artist from England whose massive hit “Tom Cruise” has a dance to go along with it.

 

BPD_8161 Macka

Macka Diamond must have taken her tune “Dutty Weave,” to heart, because she’s gone natural.

 

BPD_5087 BeenieBeenie Man and Killer had a legendary rivalry but these days you can find Moses chilling at Bounty Sundays.

 

BPD_5174 Dexta DapsNew sensation Dexta Daps gets Bounty Sundays hot like Shabba Madda Pot.

 

BPD_9132 Ganja GirlSmokin’ hot styles at Uptown Mondays.

 

BPD_9037 UptownMondaysMad plaid at Uptown Mondays.

 

BPD_9871 BlingDawgBling Dawg and Latonya Styles of Dance Ja.

 

BPD_8965 Twins2The K Queens again, at Uptown Mondays.

 

BPD_8854 IllStyleOriginal stylee at Mojito Mondays.
BPD_8913 WhiteGirlDancehall Queens Now Come In All Shades.

 

BPD_8878 DancerSwagSwaggin’ at Mojito Mondays.

 

BPD_4656 LocksInna Di Zone.

 

BPD_4647 Spliff“Excuse me while I light my spliff.”

 

BPD_8059 DreadBuy Out The Bar.

 

BPD_8103 TorchMore fire at Magnum Wednesdays.

 

BPD_5289 Dance1Dancer/Artist Crazy Hype with his new dance move “MVP.”

 

BPD_8143 ShakespeareDancers Paul “Energy” Thompson and Shakespeare.

 

BPD_5350 Dance2Showing off her flexibility at Uptown Mondays.

 

BPD_5565 DancerDancer Shelly Belly and Sanjay, an artist and TVJ producer.

 

BPD_8952 DreadsSelassie I Salute at Uptown Mondays.

 

BPD_9081 Dance ShotDancers take the stage at Uptown Mondays.

 

BPD_2364 Boss DancerBoss Bout Yah.

 

BPD_4974 SpotlightVideo Deh Pon U.

 

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