Born in Kingston
July 15, 1973, Buju Banton is a major artist in dancehall
music. He has generated controversy with some of his early, most famous songs, such as his first hit, Browning
, in which he praised light skinned women. He has become more fiercely outspoken about his Rastafarian
beliefs than many of his contemporaries, sometimes to the point of sparking outrage, as with his single "Boom Bye Bye
", a single which he not only condemns homosexuality
, but describes and encourages the killing of gay men.
More recent times have brought a social consciousness to Buju's lyrics, with songs such as "Willy," a song promoting condom usage, and "Murderer," which, perhaps parodoxically, decries the violence prevalent in Jamaican society. Some people regard Banton as the most important Jamaican artist since Bob Marley. His tremendous influence on dancehall music is certainly unquestioned, even by his critics.