DJ Papalotl Soars in a Space Where Few Women Fly

LA-based DJ Papalotl, aka Buttahfly, is sailing into April recharged, following an action packed Women’s History Month. The extremely skilled talent, who is 1/2 of Kingston 12 HiFi, a sound system she owns and operates with partner Shinehead, has been making her mark for over 25 years in a space occupied by very few women.

DJ Papalotl Soars in a Space Where Few Women Fly1

DJ Papalotl Soars in a Space Where Few Women Fly2
DJ Papalotl and partner Sh8nehead form Kingston 12 Hi Fi Sound System.

During the month dedicated to women, the powerhouse selector descended on New York for several performances at local hot spots. While DJ Papalotl may be Cali to the core, her diverse background allows her to musically penetrate various crowd sizes in any environment. New York’s engagements were intimate, and she fit the bill perfectly. The DJ gained some new fans on her New York tour, while reconnecting with many she has met over the years.

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DJ Papalotl is an international selector with over 30 years in Reggae, Dancehall, Hip Hop, Latin and other genre spaces.

Whether she was dropping rare grooves at “Everything Crash” in Brooklyn’s East River Bar or taking it to bonafide Reggae and Dancehall selections at “Trenchtown Tuesdays” in Bedstuy’s Santa Salsa Restaurant, DJ Papalotl did not disappoint. As the name suggests, at “Strictly Roots Wednesdays,” the skilled selector dug deep for the best in Roots and Culture. As if things couldn’t get hotter during the noticeably chilly East coast visit, DJ Papalotl took to the airwaves on VP Records’ Reggae King Radio with longtime friend Lee Major De Boss. Dub plates and dope selections were flying, as the DJs rocked listeners with Shinehead dubplate exclusives and some of his upcoming music.

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Music is a passion for DJ Papalotl, who co-owns the Downtown LA Kingston HiFi studio and event space with Shinehead.

New York was a blast, but LA was calling. DJ Papalotl closed out the month by producing “Empress Corner,” an event dedicated to LA Women in Reggae. Live performances from some of the best talent the “City of Angels” has to offer unfolded in the Kingston 12 Studio and event space, which she owns with Shinehead. The amazing line up of artists, including Ryo Vibes, Queen Nzingha, Queen Mother Tamatria, Empress Indika, LadyBea, B The Lioness, Jahmiroc, and Ladee Dee, shared their craft, talents, souls, and hearts at the special event. Notably, the venue is home to a variety of events, which incorporate vinyl, an authentic custom-built sound system designed by Shinehead himself, and live performances!

DJ Papalotl has garnered quite the following from her residency on the annual Welcome to Jamrock Reggae Cruise with Kingston 12 Hi Fi. While she may not grab the mic often, her force is felt through her intense mixes of Reggae and Dancehall music. Often pulsating through out the corridors of the ship, converting various spaces to full-fledged Dancehalls, the fierce selector can rock whether playing vinyl or an I-pad. She and Shinehead have a system and chemistry that’s unmatched. As one of the very few female DJs on the famed cruise…DJ Papalotl leaves a lasting impression with cruisers. This Buttahfly also travels globally to play at festivals such as Rototom, Reggae Geel, Reggae Sun Ska and Summerstage in Central Park to name a few.

Whether spinning exclusive and rare Reggae and Dancehall tunes or backing up the legendary Shinehead during his performances with audio and video, DJ Papalotl is keeping Jamaica’s tradition of sound system culture by playing authentic tunes from all eras of Jamaican music including customs and dub plates for Kingston 12 Hi Fi.

DJ Papalotl officially added selector to her brand after studying abroad in Jamaica in 1994. She was encouraged by her friend (a Hip Hop DJ) to take her love of Reggae music to the next level. The friend proceeded to school her on how to cut and mix on Technics 1200’s. The rest is history. One should never sleep on DJ Papalotl, who also dons the hats of certified sound engineer and multi-media artist. In addition to Reggae and Dancehall, the international DJ also enjoys mixing Hip Hop, RnB, Funk, Soul, Neo-Soul, Cumbia, Salsa, Merengue, Reggaeton, Soca, Afrobeat and more. This diverse background allows DJ Papalotl to not only authentically vibe in Jamaican spaces, but also other music avenues where she is significantly experienced.

Follow DJ Papalotl:

@1papalotl – IG

@kingston12hifi – IG

@kingston12hifi – FB

@kingston12hifi – TW