Hot Sauce and Reggae Fanatic Erica Diehl

As DJ Queen Majesty (Erica Diehl) transitioned from Buffalo to New York, she pursued two passions simultaneously – Jamaican music and her eponymous hot sauce line.

Heavy D’s song ‘Queen Majesty’ provides an intimate yet poetic portrayal of an intense unrequited love. Sung in Patois (a Jamaican dialect), Heavy D refers to her “every night and day, when my thoughts travel yah mon yuh step pon mi mind.” Heavy D praises his Queen Majesty as being more than one in a million;


DJ Queen Majesty (her nickname taken from Techniques’ 1967 rocksteady classic of the same name), has been collecting Jamaican vinyl records for more than two decades and spinning reggae music in New York City venues since the 1990s. She hosts East Village Radio show Deadly Dragon Sounds, and was known to select both classic tracks as well as emerging dancehall talent in Downtown Top Ranking parties she hosted for over 10 years.

Diehl’s goal, now that she combines DJing and hot sauce making as her professions, is to introduce others to the New York reggae scene that welcomed her as a teenager in the ’90s. For starters, Diehl recommends exploring Record City in Brooklyn and checking out resources such as Easy Star Records and Power of Reggae as starting points.

Hot Sauce Maker

Erica Diehl has made waves as the founder of an eponymous hot sauce business that’s garnering much attention in recent years, Erica Diehl is no stranger to making things sizzle. Her intuitive understanding of cooking’s alchemical rhythms wasn’t developed accidentally–she honed it during almost two decades as one of New York City’s foremost reggae DJs, spinning strictly Jamaican music under her Queen Majesty moniker at parties and concerts around NYC as well as internationally.

As she entered the culinary world and started crafting small-batch sauces for Caribbean cuisine, she didn’t look for hot sauce recipes but rather adjusted flavors accordingly. Scotch Bonnet & Ginger prioritized complex flavor over heat while Jalapeno Tequila Lime delivered crisp refreshing verde hot sauce; then came Red Habanero Black Coffee which featured Mexican pasilla negro chilis mixed with rich coffee-infused white vinegar for an unforgiving bite!

Queen Majesty sauces have become an award-winning hit at the NYC Hot Sauce Expo and online, garnering multiple medals to garner accolades like those given out by YouTube sensation Casey Neistat (“this is a nice sauce,” as he said on season four of his tear-inducing wing talk show). Diehl’s new offering Cocoa Ghost features bitter cocoa powder, sweet pineapple, gingery warmth and ghost pepper heat that arrives quickly before lingering into your nostrils for lasting sensations of ghost pepper heat to bring depth into its depth and then heat in bursts before quickly flashes of ghost pepper heat take over before leaving your nostrils before returning lingering back for more fun.

Diehl has remained true to her roots with her company, selling sauces at farmers markets and meeting buyers door to door. Her passion for each step in the process and deep appreciation for artists who make up her music are what drive her work; whether curating playlists for General Stereo radio shows or expanding her brand further, Diehl ensures she remains true to this same spirit in everything she does.

Radio Show Host

An avid music lover doesn’t just appreciate their favorites; they share them with others as well. That is the case of Brooklyn DJ Queen Majesty, who doesn’t settle for being an individual collector of Jamaican music; instead she curates reggae events and radio shows to bring it directly to audiences around NYC and worldwide.

She’s well known in NYC’s reggae scene due to her long tenure on Jamaica Rock on two NYC underground station outposts. Additionally, she curated and hosted Downtown Top Ranking at Public Records as part of summer party series Downtown Top Ranking and has performed at several other venues, such as Jah Wise’s Sound Chat Radio show.

Queen Majesty is part of a growing wave of roots reggae artists emerging from Rastafari that emphasize female agency and the Omega Principle. This shift can be seen in works by Queen Ifrika (“Lioness on the Rise”), Jah Nine (“New Name”), Hempress Sativa (“Skin Teeth”) and Koffee (winner of this year’s GRAMMY Award for Best Reggae Album with her debut Cocoon).

Queen Majesty prioritizes finding new music when selecting her playlists for General Stereo shows, while still showing respect to classic songs that remain popular today. “I am always searching for the next thing; but at the same time I want to ensure that we play only what’s good already here.”

Queen Majesty, an avid collector, can often be found scouring reggae shops for rare 45s or digging through record store bins for new releases, especially by producers like Edi Fitzroy, Sugar Minott and Earl Sixteen. She’s thrilled to bring these sounds to Allen Street Hardware this week–she promises “it will be a fun evening!” She will be joined by DJ Universal for three-hours of classic reggae/dub music from The Steady 45s along with live performances by local band The Steady 45s!


Erica Diehl wasn’t always Queen Majesty – New York DJ and hot sauce creator Erica Diehl came from Buffalo looking for somewhere she fit in; finding it within New York’s reggae community.

She began collecting records and listening to rocksteady, ska, and older reggae music; soon she was playing it for crowds at venues throughout the city.

Heavy D expresses his affection for Queen Majesty through Jamaican patois in “Queen Majesty”, writing “Every night and day yah mon yuh step pon mi mind.” Heavy D further shows his appreciation by calling her one-of-a-kind by proclaiming she’s one in a million!