Dancehall’s First Queen Carlene Honored For Her Contribution To Jamaican Music

Dancehall Queen Carlene Smith was honored for her contribution to Jamaican music industry at the annual Queens of Reggae Island Honorary Ceremonies (QORIHC).

For those of you who don’t know who is Dancehall Queen Carlene, she was a staple in dancehall in the 1990s when the genre was shaping the face of Jamaican music. Carlene, who was the first true dancehall queen, was a true trendsetter and gave rise to the now annual dancehall queen competition. The Butterfly dancehall move was her signature dance move and you can see it still being relevant today in Rihanna and Drake’s “Work” music video. She also landed a major role in Chaka Demus & Pliers classic video “Murder She Wrote.”

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“I am excited, elated, humbled. I am very appreciative for the fact that somebody felt that my contributions to dancehall and Jamaica are worth being recognised,” Carlene said.

Dancehall Queen Carlene helped paved the way for a slew of female dancers in Jamaica. Not only was she a pioneer for hardcore dancehall dancers, but she also worked behind the scenes throughout the years to make an impact over the years.

‘Dancehall needs more structuring. Everybody is in it for the money and not for the love of it,” she said. “So to me it’s lacking in that passion. I advise the young dancehall queens try to be unique, be yourself, be original, because when you try to be in somebody else’s shoes they will compare and it holds you back.”