#LOL30 Forwards: Walshy Fire (Major Lazer)
Giselle The Wassi One, Soca Ambassador, reached out to her Rolodex of friends upon the conception of the “Life Of a Legend 30 Carnival Tour & Documentary“. The Life Of a Legend project, also known as #LOL30, is a two-part process that documents Caribbean artists, icons, and professionals relationship with Giselle The Wassi One as it relates to their experiences with her.
As we delve deeper into the life of Giselle the Wassi One, one thing is constant, Giselle sees the potential of people before they themselves do.
The first person to respond to The Wassi One’s request for support was Walshy Fire (of Major Lazer), one of the biggest names in music.
Leighton Walsh, better known by his stage name Walshy Fire, is a Jamaican-American DJ and record producer who is better known as part of the dancehall reggae-influenced group Major Lazer.
Walshy Fire toured with the Black Chiney sound system beginning in 2004. Black Chiney is cited as a significant influence on the evolution of Major Lazer with its mash ups that blend hip hop or R&B rhythms with reggae & R&B artist vocal tracks and its representation of the Jamaican sound system.
Walshy Fire has been influenced by reggae and dancehall traditions. In 2013, he said: “my sole purpose with this Major Lazer thing is to bring back some glory and international exposure [for] reggae and dancehall.”
Since 2012, Walshy Fire has presided as master of ceremonies for Major Lazer. In 2013, he described his role as follows:
Basically, Diplo is the selector and I’m the MC. He’s the one that picks the records and mixes the records and I’m the one that’s out front and presents the records to people, makes speeches that makes the records make sense, and pulls up the records. I give the crowd humor when it’s time to give them humor, emotion when it’s time to give them emotion, and just keep the whole vibe intense throughout the whole set.
He’s contributed to the production of two Major Lazer releases: APOCALYPSE SOON and Peace is the Mission. In the latter album, he cowrote the Chronixx song “Blaze Up The Fire” and lent his vocals to “Too Original”. Walshy Fire along with Diplo & Jillionaire host the Major Lazer Lazer Sound program on Apple Music’s Beats 1. With Major Lazer Walshy Fire has collaborated with artists from a variety of genres maintaining a commitment to cultural authenticity and in particular with regard to Caribbean music subgenres
Walshy Fire launched a label in 2015 with its roots in Jamaica’s sound system culture,and extending into other genres including hip-hop. Work with Caribbean artists and the presentation of the various subgenres of their music styles to wider audiences through live sets, pre-recorded mixes and broadcast music programs has fueled the Walshy Fire Presents label concept.