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Vybz Kartel

A controversial figure and a superstar in his homeland of Jamaica, Vybz Kartel was hailed as one of the leading new artists to emerge from the dancehall scene following the release of his 2003 debut album, Up 2 Di Time. Born and raised in the Waterford district of Jamaica, Kartel was only 12 when he released his first single, "Fat Women," under the name Adi Banton. In 1996, he formed Vibes Cartel with his friends Mr Lee and Escobar, but the group quickly dissolved. Vybz would keep the group's name in altered form and became a solo artist; he soon became the protégé of popular dancehall singer Bounty Killer. Kartel began writing for artists on Bounty's Alliance management roster, including the Killer himself, along with the Scare Dem Crew featuring Elephant Man. Vybz broke out on his own in 2002 with a string of solo hits including "Guns Like Mine," "Badman," and "Most High," along with some collaborative hits with reggae singer Wayne Marshall. Being crowned 2002 deejay of the year at the Stone Love Sound System's 30th anniversary party meant the singer had officially arrived amongst the Jamaican dancehall community, but a year later he would break on a worldwide level, releasing his debut Up 2 Di Time to wide acclaim while making headlines thanks to an on-stage clash with Ninjaman during the Sting festival in Kartel's hometown of Portmore. The planned clash was highly anticipated, but when members of Kartel's crew assaulted Ninjaman on-stage, chaos took over with numerous arrests and the future of Sting coming into question, forcing Kartel to make a public apology while announcing a truce with Ninjaman during a press conference held four days after Sting. If all the gun talk and curse words in the man's songs hadn't already labeled him a possibly "dangerous" artist, the Ninjaman incident surely did.

More Up 2 Di Time would land in 2004, the same year that Vybz was nominated for a MOBO award in the U.K., although that was quickly withdrawn along with those of Beenie Man and Sizzla over concerns with lyrics representing homophobia. The J.M.T. album dropped in 2005, but that year would see as many headlines as hits as Kartel and Bounty fell out, trading insults in the Jamaican press as accusations of stolen girlfriends, baby fathers, and bogus songwriting credits flew. Kartel would be out of the Killer-led Alliance a year later, immediately joining forces with one of Bounty's biggest enemies, Beenie Man. He then released a series of diss tracks aimed at Bounty Killer's new protégé, Mavado, and it only took a moment before the Jamaican media was entranced. The next few years would be filled with diss tracks and gossip as young dancehall fans chose sides, declaring themselves Gaza if their allegiance was with Kartel, and Gully if they sided with Mavado. A truce was announced in late 2007, but things escalated during 2008, and in 2009 Vybz released his "Live We Living" single as a call for peace. He also stepped outside his usual genre that year, and partnered with electro producer Diplo for a track on the Major Lazer album Guns Don't Kill People... Lazers Do. Back home, fans had become so divided into Gaza and Gully camps that gang violence had come into play, prompting Jamaican Prime Minister Bruce Golding to call both artists to the capital for a peace meeting. A peace concert featuring the two artists and promoted by Christopher Coke -- aka "Dudus," the drug lord whose capture later in 2010 would make headlines worldwide thanks to a three-day police standoff -- was planned for early that next year, but was canceled by the country's Minister of Culture. That year's "Clarks" single became a huge hit for Kartel, spawning two more follow-up singles about the shoe brand that would also climb the charts, while the 2010 album Pon Di Gaza 2.0 produced the hits "Ramping Shop" and "Life Sweet." In 2011, Vybz would release the Kingston Story album with Brooklyn house music producer Dre Skull handling the beats. Kartel was arrested in September of that year and charged with the murder of Barrington "Bosie" Burton, a music promoter based in the St. Catherine suburb of Portmore. In America, the Vice label issued a deluxe version of Kingston Story in 2012, and even though Vybz made bail on the Burton murder charge, he remained jailed based on new charges in connection with the murder of alleged gang member Clive "Lizard" Williams. ~ David Jeffries, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: Anytime (Single) (Explicit)

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Track List: Buy Di House Inna Your Name (Single)

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Track List: Compass (Single)

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Track List: Dedication (Single)

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Track List: Drop Top (Single)

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Track List: Half On A Baby (Clean) (Single)

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Track List: Hi (Single)

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Track List: My Gyal (Single)

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Track List: No Bed (Single)

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Track List: Nuh Play Roun Wid Fire (Single) (Explicit)

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Track List: Reggae Love Songs (Raw) (Single) (Explicit)

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Track List: Romping Shop (Radio Single)

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Track List: Yuh Love (Radio Single)

Comments

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Pon di river�� Pon di bank��
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Gully to go
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I disagree with all u people saying that worl boss kartel is better than alkaline u most of fell on your head top
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carlos.g892
Free worl boss nobody deh Pon his level....not even alkaline!!!! ! ! !
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I love his songs<3
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Free Worl Boss, mi nah care bout Alkaline
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Love his music
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Love you music kartel,free world boss
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123tiffanywi t h e r s p o o n 8 9
Love you vybzkartel hop you come home soon love your music
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Love this song
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woiiiiieee set gud like di ice inna freeza !!!!..
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Love that song wow
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Compass love thate can dance that song
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Addi a bass. So free him know!!!!!!!!
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Free. World boss
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Mi pumpum turn up love that song mad thing world boss free kartel wow ☺☺☺☺☺
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yes he do
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S**t he needs to be out already but its not going to happen
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Sometime again
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Brooklyn
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Say that again love it miss u gt
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Freaky man MI say Kartel
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Good
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Free additional dance like crazy
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party me sey free world boss love this song
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I want to get hi free world boss love vybz kartel big up central high school in may pen in Jamaica big your self
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Ahhhhh
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Up up up
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hottskull79
Gaza mad head
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����������
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Love your song
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Free kartel
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Free up mi cousin
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Free up mi cousin
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Hazard king Fuh life free my n**ga addi
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Free up...Kartel. GAZA for life!
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Free up vybz kartel dancehall king gaza Sparta real tings da man ya sing bout!
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this song make me want to dance
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love this song
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proud Jamaican/baj a n here
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Hot
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Damn that's hardcore what he went through one day he'll be free at last
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Mi pree dem, best vybz
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bbybrina7
Best artist inna d world!!
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Love him love him even wit the bleached skin still remained sexy free Kartel
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Gaza
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853sww15
Adi teacher fi tell u!��
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c4irvin
Aaron
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Gaza!
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Luv yuh Addi fi life!!! Keep yuh head up!!! And you nuh deserve nuh imprisonment for smaddy dat dem seh ah nuh gunman.Dem did ah try bring yuh dun.. fram longtime!!! FREE UP DI BOSS!
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