September 22, 2008
FLAMZE…..A BALL OF FIRE FOR THE AIRWAVES
Flamze: A hot glowing mass of burning gas, often carrying incandescent particles; a brilliant reddish orange color often used to describe one’s personality.
Born Sidony Smith, she got her entry in radio land with the name Flamze. ‘I first came by the name Flamze when I heard that I was going to be doing a show called "96 Degrees" in the 1-5pm slot for 5 days a week, so my female cousin (an inspiration to me called simply Ghetto Yute) and I sat down and brainstormed for a few hours and we had chosen a few other names like Pepper, Ginger, Heat and finally she said Flamze. That had a great ring to it and it truly was the best word to describe my personality and the kind of vibe that I wanted to transmit to the listeners’, Flamze revealed. The radio station that she started was a community radio station in Savanna-la-mar Westmoreland known as LINKZ 96 fm.
Flamze, who is also one of the Caribbean’s most sought after MC,s was born and raised in the Marine Park area of Portmore in St. Catherine. She lived there until she was six years old, when her family relocated to Linstead in St. Catherine. She stayed in Linstead until she was 17 years old, where she then relocated to Kingston while attending Excelsior Community College where she pursued an Associates Degree in Tourism, Hospitality and Entertainment at the Excelsior Community College.
In 2003, she attended the Phillip Sherlock Center for the Performing Arts and did a Voice & Speech Course with renowned broadcaster Tony Patel. In the summer of that year, she returned to the UWI campus for the Radio Announcing and Presentation Course that was facilitated by another broadcasting legend, Fae Ellington.
The following year she completed a short course in News Writing & Editing which was facilitated by Prof. Kendall Moore. Since then Flamze has further trained with renowned broadcaster Paula Ann Porter Jones.
After her tenure at LINKZ 96 FM, Flamze made her move to ZIP 103 FM, and later was invited by Judith Ann Bodley, former Station Manager to work for RJR 94FM. “Judith Bodley was the first main stream media manager who saw my talent, believed in it, and was willing to further hone my talent by taking me under her tutelage. I owe most of what I now know to Judith and will forever be grateful to her for that”. For the past 2 years Flamze has been igniting the airwaves of RJR94 fm, and though now absent from radio due to internal issues, this multi-talented woman has landed the position of VJ, for HYPE TV’s VTX Countdown, and has been getting rave reviews since she started. Viewers can look out for Flamze and Treasure on Up & Live, Tuesdays on Hype TV.
In her talent pool, Flamze is an established MC, Disc Jock, VJ, and Events Manager, and has graced the stage of many local and Caribbean events. Asked if she hadn’t gotten her foot in media what other career path she would’ve pursued, Flamze said: ‘I would definitely still be in entertainment probably as a dance major from the Edna Manley School of performing arts. I would also try my hand at music producing and Artiste Management or without a doubt Public Relations. I would not survive in an office just filing papers everyday music is in my bones cause back in the 70's my father owned and operated a huge sound system(which I refuse to name) and I guess it’s hereditary”.
She also loves to chill at home, cook and watch National Geographic channel. Musically she loves listening to old school music including rock and alternative, hip hop, dancehall, disco, pop and jazz.
As for her ultimate goal in life, it is to become a Lecturer at the UWI Mona campus in Communication or Psychology. ‘I also want to do at least 5 more years in Jamaican radio and hopefully land a job doing a weekly all Jamaican radio show on HOT 97 in New York, representing for the best in Jamaican music. I also want to manage a radio station one day. But I'll get there in baby strides’, she joked.