Kryme Rate: A “Champion Bwoy” from Jamaica

by Oct 7, 2022News

Kryme Rate (Photo courtesy of Kryme Rate)

Almost 25 years ago, a 10-year-old boy, living in the nitty-gritty of Grants Pen Kingston), was pushing handcart for a meager fifty dollars; sleeping in Coronation Market just to survive.

He would also sell bag-juice and snacks to help send himself to school and to help his mom and siblings.

Today, the budding entertainer, born Andre Omara Robinson, is a Champion. He has won over 100 deejay clashes all over Jamaica and is preparing to take the Champion Bwoy Karaoke and Talent Contest trophy.

Last week Sunday (October 2), Kryme Rate from Mullet Hall, Clarendon, showed why he is hard to beat when he swept all four categories – lyrical content, stage presentation, crowd appeal, and dress/deportment – at the first elimination round of the competition at Summerfield, Clarendon, Jamaica. There will be two other elimination before the grand finals set for November 6, 2022.

One judge, with over 40 years of experience, gave Kryme Rate 99 percent, adding that he had never in his lifetime given anyone that score before. And, the dark-skinned rough-cut medium height “Builteen” (as he is sometimes called), was not surprised.

Champion Talent Poster

“I have never lost a clash in my life over 100 and I had done that across Jamaica, almost every single parish you can think of. No matter how great they think they are Kryme Rate will cut them down like a tree.”

Promoter Owayne “Champion Bwoy” Thompson believes this could be “the battle of the Titans” come November, as some of the hopefuls will enter this Sunday’s elimination in an effort to erase Kryme Rate’s winning streak at the finals.

“This could be no walk-over for Kryme Rate. I know this community like the back of my hands, and they don’t easily give up any battle,” Champion Bwoy says.

Kryme Rate’s musical journey is one that many would have kept a secret because there were so many dark moments.

“Mi granny used to tell me, son, if you waan good you nose affi run (meaning, achievements comes with a lot of sacrifices in life). I knew how it feels renting a handcart for two hundred dollars, sleeping in the market, risking my life at 11 years old, saving that money, and buying groceries for not only myself but two smaller brothers.”

But, despite this poverty, which comes with great challenges, Kryme Rate wanted music, and at age 15, he met a friend named 12 Gage.

“He (12 Gage) pushed me into joining him writing a song for a clash competition. We won the clash at a place called Andrews Pen Lane in Barbican, St.Andrew. Writing became my hobby and every little spare time would find me writing all type of lyrics cause winning that first clash was sweetness for me.”

Then, tragedy struck his family.

“My brother died and mom sent me down to my grandmother in White Hill St.Elizabeth, to help dig his grave. I was still a teenager and loving music so much I met a group of deejays. We would write up slogans all over the walls in the community.”

Kryme Rate was getting links all over Jamaica, and wherever he heard of a clash competition he would be there for sure.

“I met a bad deejay a Spanish Town name Sashae. She kill off (win) all of the man dem. So my brethren send me to clash her. I won the clash and share the five thousand I got equally with her,” he recalled.

Kryme Rate has won as much as twenty-five thousand dollars; he hopes to make millions in the future and some of that money would go towards helping youths – not only in his community but also elsewhere.

He believes the Jamaican government needs to do more to decrease the crime rate on the island.

“It is true that a lot of youths do not have the mindset to work hard. But, there is a need for more opportunities for our youths such as creating more jobs; increasing the minimum wage (which now stands at $9,000 weekly (except for security guards); weeding out corruption which is further dividing the country and decreasing the cost of living.

(Photo courtesy of Kryme Rate)