A four-letter word best describes the display of musical mastery that unfolded on the Instagram Live battle, Verzuz, on Saturday night: EPIC. It will be days, perhaps weeks, or even months before everybody ceases talking about the showmanship of the two giants as they ignited an international audience in a matchup that was clearly made in dancehall heaven. Jamaicans at home and overseas continue to savour the sweet taste of success mingled with joy and pride that those two hours on Saturday provided. International Reggae Day founder Andrea Davis spoke for many persons when she told The Gleaner: “I find myself watching the clips over and over again. They were even matching in their clothes! Then there are the memes. They raised the bar so high!” Davis said.
Chairman of the Entertainment Advisory Board Howard McIntosh just could not hide his enthusiasm, and to be honest, he made no effort to do so. “For over two hours, Jamaica once again captured the attention of the world and captivated it with two of our musical legends. On Instagram, over half a million people watched an authentic display of our biggest export: our culture. We have proven yet again the power of our brand, the power of our music, the power of dancehall. Jamaica created ‘the clash’, and with this Verzuz between Beenie Man and Bounty Killer, we showed the world how it must be done.”
Coming as no surprise is a call for a Part 2 to the Beenie-Bounty clash, along with a host of other suggestions floating around in online spaces for possible matchups between Jamaican artistes. Taking into consideration the Verzuz stipulation that the contenders must play 20 of their top songs – so catalogue is essential – and there’s also the fact that the musical gladiators should have the muscle to pull an online audience in the hundreds of thousands, here’s a roundup of the various suggestions for Verzuz creators Swizz Beatz and Timbaland to consider.
Of interest is the fact that while names like Shabba Ranks, Buju Banton, Sean Paul, Sizzla, Shaggy, Capleton, and Damian Marley appeared more than once, only three female names came up for consideration, one of whom has ditched the dancehall. One of the females is Marcia Griffiths, and the suggestion is that Sister Marcia should have a showdown with Beres Hammond. The other possibility is really wishful thinking on the part of dancehall fans, but we will include it nevertheless. “Spice vs Lady Saw (if only).”
Also on the “if only” list are Beenie vs Vybz Kartel and Mavado vs Vybz Kartel.
Here are the possibilities: Buju Banton vs Beres Hammond
Buju Banton vs Damian Marley
Buju Banton vs Sizzla Kalonji
Buju Banton vs Capleton
Beres Hammond vs Marcia Griffiths
Capleton vs Sizzla Kalonji
Damian Marley vs Sean Paul
Damian Marley vs Bounty Killer
Shaggy vs Sean Paul
Tarrus Riley vs Chronixx
Tarrus Riley vs Morgan Heritage
Sean Paul vs Shabba Ranks
Beenie Man vs Shabba Ranks
Morgan Heritage vs The Marleys
Beenie Man vs Bounty Killer Pt 2