Hollice “Mr.Killa” Mapp
“Crowd-pulling musical versatility” is the phrase that best describes this young song-writing, rhythm-building, energetic-performing-from-start-to-end, amazing Caribbean artiste, who the world knows as “Mr. Killa”. Blessed with a fantastic voice and the ability to suitably alter the range and tone for many genres of music, he has also developed and mastered jaw-dropping trademark stage theatrics that mesmerizes his audience. His unique bounce and ability to whine while standing on his hands and the “Animal Dance” are must-sees.
Born Hollice Jonah Mapp on June 4th, 1984 on the Isle of Spice in the popular action-filled town called Gouyave, this Grenadian artiste started exercising his vocal cords from the age of ten, focusing on Dancehall and Reggae. In 1999, at the age of 15, he won the first-ever national Teen Talent Search Competition with all original dancehall pieces. It was 2 years after, that the artiste made the decision to explore his abilities in singing Soca.
Mr. Killa’s first composition was entitled: “Gouyave Alone”; a song about Carnival in his hometown. In 2002, he entered Grenada’s premier Soca show – the National Soca Monarch with his debut hit song: “The Wood Can’t Done”, placing 7th in competition. It was the official start of this amazing phenomenon.
After another unacceptable 7th place in 2003, Mr. Killa undisputedly won the prestigious title with his lyrical composition: “Thunder Rags” in 2004. An unforgettable performance from an artiste who, under great caution, was allowed to leave the hospital with severe injuries experienced from a horrific car crash on the same day of the competition. Forced to calmly perform in a neck-brace, Mr. Killa moved the audience like no other, soliciting an unrepeated crowd reaction with his presentation and delivery.
That winning earned Mr. Killa the privilege of competing in the renowned International Soca Monarch in Trinidad and Tobago in 2005. There, he placed 5th with his exhilarating instructional dance tune entitled: “Gyal Whine If You Whining”, leaving the spectators – young and old – in awe from his delivery and a taste of his signature dance moves.
Ever since, the Grenadian public and Diaspora expected more of him, alerting promoters of his crowd-pulling capabilities. Mr. Killa became a regular as headliners for shows on the Sister-Isles and Grenadines, Trinidad, Barbados, St. Lucia, Tortola, New York, Miami, Texas, Toronto, Montreal and London.
Songs like “Carnival”, “Ivan”, “Mad Like That”, “Rag It Up” and the Soca Monarch tune: “The King Returns” topped the charts in 2005; but, his defense was unsuccessful due to issues with preparation for the major event.
In 2006, Mr. Killa returned with a vengeance, launching his first album “Balance”, which comprised 5 hit songs. He won the Groovy-Soca Monarch with “Spice Isle Rock” – a song that promotes Grenada and fun spots with locals in his hometown. Mr. Killa also won the Soca Monarch with “Warriors”, coupled with an awesome raising-the-bar sterling presentation; and 1st Runner-Up for the Road March title with the ever-popular instructional song – “Balance”.
The successes of 2006, meant no turning back for Mr. Killa, and inspired a plethora of hits in the 2007 “Forward Ever” album. It comprised 12 new songs, including hits like “Rider” – a clever blend of Soca and Country & Western; “Hunting Cat” – a witty well-composed Calypso with all pun intended; “Gone Mad Again” – an electrifying merger of Soca with Dancehall; “Forward Ever”, “J’ouvert Down De Road”, “Revellers”, “Island Paradise” and “Turn It Up”. Mr. Killa consistently earned close 2nd-places in the 2007 and 2008 National Soca Monarch competitions with “Turn It Up” and “I will Never Give Up”, respectively.
In 2009, he did a rare double again, winning the National Soca Monarch title with “Swing It Away”, delivering another ground-shaking performance and unmatched cliff-hanging presentation that the Caribbean has ever seen; and the Road March title with the same song. He produced many hits like “More Rum”, “The Boom” and “My Water Come”. That year, he introduced the now-highly-expected annual “Mash-Up Tunes”.
In 2009, it was “The Fence”, which commanded the crowds at entertainment venues to carry out the actions in the tune. It was a song feared by most promoters due to the behaviour of the audience when presented, which caused a number of shows to shut-down during the performance. His bookings brought on meetings with major control authorities and promoters, where he was constantly asked not to perform the song. However, Mr. Killa showed promoters that he had control of the actions of the crowd. One such occurrence was at Moonlight City, where he successfully commanded them to pack back every item that was moved. He placed 3rd in the OECS Soca Monarch in St. Lucia, commanding the same reactions from the crowds, promoters and control authorities in St. Lucia. A new plan for installation of fence, tents, stages and music system arise as a result.
In 2010, taking the Caribbean and the wider world by storm; Mr. Killa dominated the airways, workplaces, homes and entertainment venues with his versatility, producing many hits. He placed 2nd in the National Soca Monarch with what is rated as his best Soca Monarch songs to date: “See Dem Fly”. He sang his 2nd mash-up song, “Mr. Mash-Up”, successfully commanding the crowd again; and ventured into the Jamaican market, doing a collaboration with Sizzla Kalonji, called “Gal You Bad, and “Fling It Up”.
In 2011, Mr. Killa was the one to beat again, placing another 2nd in the island’s National Soca Monarch with “All Gettonnas”. True to his form, he produced the most requested groovy hit, “Sugar Pot” – a unique Soca-Dancehall piece which continues to grow in popularity in the region, including Jamaica, and in the Diaspora, including Boston, and was number one on the charts in Tobago for quite a while. His 3rd Mash-Up song was done in collaboration with St. Lucia’s Pringles, entitled “More Mash-Up”; and again, he produced a number of lyrically pulsating, melodic hits, like “Take A Shot” and “Plug It In”.
Already in 2012, Mr. Killa has crossed boundaries, creating wild stirs with an electrifying retro dance-tune, called “Do You Wanna Party” – a song with international appeal, reeling him into capturing the title of radio Monarch in Grenada. Already, it is quickly becoming the most requested song of the year, and is expected to last for a very long time. Tearing up the airways is his sensational mash-up song, entitled “Born to Mash Up” – another collaboration with Pringles; and “Love How You Whining”, “Ay Ay”, “Me Never Lapse” and “Rudeboy” – 3 captivating Soca dancehall tunes; and the fun-filled “Film A Movie”.
One of the highlights of 2012 is the production of the tribute song called “Kirani City”, to fellow-Gouyave man and World and Olympics 400M Champion, Kirani James. The music video recorded over 37,000 views on YouTube in less than a month.
Mr. Killa has established himself as the pre-eminent Soca performer, leading the way in Soca fusion and versatility with a unique touch in different musical genres. He is focused on his pilgrimage towards international music success. While working with selective producers, Mr. Killa has constructed his studio and operates under Constant Spring Productions, producing Stone Hill Records.
Credit Grenada Cultural Foundation http://culture.gd