Nick Toth - Dutty Wine'in
Author: Ben James
Thursday, 7 August 2008
Now in its second year, the Dancehall Queen Australia contest is a mammoth undertaking on Nick Toth's part. The heats are on now and are covering Melbourne, Sydney, Perth, Brisbane and Adelaide and Toth appears to be mighty excited about the whole she-bang.
'The style of dance that will happen at these contests is a Caribbean flavour that has its origins in everything from traditional dance to hip hop and other styles,' he enthuses. 'It's difficult to describe but it's all about attitude, personality and originality of the female dancer. These competitions happen all over the world from Japan to Canada, the States, Germany, Italy and so forth. It's a real international movement. We're looking to establish this movement in Australia that will eventually produce a dancer that we can send to the international finals in Jamaica and compete against the best of the best.
'To coincide with the Dancehall Queen competition,' Toth continues, 'we just released a Mix CD which is basically the soundtrack to the Dancehall Queen Australia 2008. It's out on Hardwax and features some of the biggest dancehall tunes of the moment, as well as some classic cuts that will make you shake your butt - artists like Elephant Man, Sean Paul, Beanie Man and so on.'
Toth prides himself on being an educator as much as he does an entertainer, and his talents have seen him as a member of Foreign Heights as well as support for a star-swollen list of hip hop's finest from Kanye West to 50 Cent, Missy Elliott, Jurassic 5 and Black Eyed Peas. Despite these accolades, Toth still gets excited by the scene itself.
'At the moment the big tune for us is Click My Finger by Erupt,' he enthuses. 'Also Elephant Man has a tune called Boosie Bounce - there's always new stuff coming out. It's a very vibrant, very spontaneous culture. There's one track that's pretty much our theme called Dancehall Queen from about 10 years ago and that's by Chevelle Franklin and Beanie Man. That's the theme song to a movie by the same name that is probably one of the best Jamaican features. It's set in Jamaica and has a lot of background information on dancehall.'
Glancing at his resume would reveal that Toth isn't a man to sit still for very long. From his own to DJ work to collaborating in Foreign Heights to this contest itself, he really manages to keep busy. But what's next-
'There are a lot of different projects on the go,' he explains. 'I've started producing some new tracks - a kind of dancehall styled production and really at the moment it's all about these events. The Dancehall Queen thing is really consuming me; it'll go to November you know. Foreign Heights still exists but Maya Jupiter is pursuing her musical career and working with artists in South America. So that's on hold for now. Stay tuned.
WHO: Nick Toth
WHAT: Dancehall Queen Australia 2008
WHEN: Friday 8 August - Saturday 15 November