He is one of the top lieutenants in the Portmore Empire, a super-talented outfit of deejays mentored by the leading deejay of his generation, Vybz Kartel, aka Addi the Teacha.
Born Romaine Anderson, Blak Ryno grew up in the community of ‘Third World’ in Waterford, Portmore, and attended Bridgeport High. While at school, he joined a seven-member group, East Side. After leaving school he stayed true to his musical ambitions while his peers chose different professions.
A meeting with Kartel, during which the senior deejay said he liked Ryno’s flow, only served to strengthen his resolve. He recorded a single, Shelle-le-le on the Siren rhythm for producer Patrick ‘Roach’ Samuels in 2005 and producers started paying attention to him. He earned forwards at stage shows such as ‘Picture You and Me’ in St Thomas.
Since officially joining the Portmore Empire in January 2007, Blak Ryno has been building his rep on stage shows across the Caribbean, in countries like Guadeloupe, Martinique and Barbados. He even performed at shows in France and Switzerland, showing that his distinctive sound and appeal stretches across language barriers.
“At the time, I never understand the fullness of the thing and how to campaign the streets, but now I have the formula to deal with it, and the Teacha is helping me to become a better deejay, ah Empire the ting deh,” he said.
Since he began recording on Kartel’s label, Adidjaheim Records, in 2007, Blak Ryno has been a revelation. One of his early singles, Mek Di Paper, hit FM radio like a missile strike, and a subsequent medley video received regular rotation on HYPE and RE TV. He cemented his position as a dancehall young blood for the with the monster hit, Thug Anthem, which hit reggae-dancehall charts in the US, and top 10 charts here in Jamaica.
Other popular singles include Bend Over, Dare to Try, Caan Mek Me Runaway and Real Stingers on the Remand medley. Recently, he has performed at sold-out shows in Atlanta, New York, Philadelphia, Fort Lauderdale and Maryland. He is booked to appear alongside fellow deejay Jah Vinci at a show at Club Amazura in Queens, New York, on June.
The scary thing is he just keeps getting better all the time. There’s no stopping the Blak Ryno.