Barbados LGBT community calls on Buju Banton to publicly denounce ‘Boom Bye Bye’

By Barbados Today

 Share This On:

Buju Banton

(BARBADOS TODAY) — The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transsexual (LGBT) community has called on Jamaican dancehall recording artist Buju Banton, fresh from serving a prison sentence, to publicly denounce one of his most popular songs ahead of a performance scheduled here next year.

Early Friday morning, music promoters Fas7Star Entertainment uploaded a poster with a picture of the artist, indicating he would headline an April 27 concert called Long Walk to Freedom at the 2019 Barbados Reggae Festival.

The news comes just two weeks after the artist – real name Mark Myrie – was released after serving seven years in a US prison for a major drug conviction.

While his release has prompted celebration from many fans across the Caribbean, it has also raised new questions about his popular song, Boom Bye Bye, which openly advocated the killing of gay people in 1988.

While spokesperson for the local LGBT community, Ro-Ann Mohammed, welcomed the news that Buju would be headlining next year’s reggae festival, she admitted that “there is some merit to how some people feel with regard to the rhetoric surrounding some of his early music, particularly the Boom Bye Bye song.

“And even today, it is a song that is used to advocate the literal death of LGBT people, based on sexual orientation, gender identity . . . and that is wrong; that is fundamentally wrong on every level. Even though Buju himself wrote that song as a teenager and he doesn’t perform the song anymore, the song is still used to discriminate against LGBT people and to cause harm and to perpetuate harm against LGBT people. So I think people are very valid in feeling unsafe considering it’s a time of uncertainty,” she said.

While Mohammed said she would be attending the concert, she still called on the artist to give more clarity on his position on Boom Bye Bye 30 years on.

“I think it would still be great if Buju himself was to make a statement against the song, even though he doesn’t perform it anymore and he signed that agreement with other dancehall artist not to promote hate or to promote violence against LGBT people. I think it would still be great if he would make some sort of statement, distancing himself from that song and that message because his portfolio after that song has been one of love and inclusion and tolerance and promoting acceptance and uplifting black people,” said Mohammed.

She said she was not aware of any protest being mounted against staging the concert.

“Personally, I will be at the concert, but also I don’t think there is any movement to prohibit him from performing. I don’t think there’s going to be a major community backlash or anything.”

The LGBT spokesperson, who identifies as queer, said she does not believe her decision to attend the concert should be viewed as a double standard, arguing that one song did not define Buju Banton.

“It’s a double-edged sword, but I think its something you see a lot within Caribbean culture. That dichotomy of loving the artist, although everything the artist promotes is not always a hundred per cent great.

“I am a queer person, but I am also a Caribbean person and this particular artist has been very instrumental to my development as a Caribbean person, and is somebody’s artistry I enjoy and I feel lack that one particular song is a small fraction of what he represents,” she said.

But she added: “I would have a problem, however, if I were to go to the concert and he did perform the song.”

Mohammed also called on key stakeholders in the music industry to be more mindful of the messages being sent in the songs they play, like Buju Banton’s Boom Bye Bye, which is still a hit at some events.

“I don’t think there’s any way to play that song and not support the message. The message of the song is clear; that LGBT people deserve death and that is by no means okay. That’s a complete violation of human rights on every basis. It’s not okay to play that song.

“I think the onus is on party promoters, deejays and radio announcers, not to play that song and to take a stand against the messages of violence against LGBT people. It is not just with that song, but with all homophobic songs because that is not an intrinsic part of our culture. I think the onus is on [Buju] as the artist to speak out against it when it is played and when people use that to bolster their arguments against LGBT people,” she said.

Barbados TODAY reached out to co-director of FAS7STAR entertainment, Al Gilkes, who said he was not yet in a position to comment, as he was still in the process of finalizing arrangements for the concert.

(7)(49)
This article was posted in its entirety as received by stlucianewsonline.com. This media house does not correct any spelling or grammatical error within press releases and commentaries. The views expressed therein are not necessarily those of stlucianewsonline.com, its sponsors or advertisers.

30 comments

  1. buju banton dont have nothing to say to no queer he just knows he dont have to sing that song. right now that song is one of his biggest hitting songs. so many artists that singing songs that promoting violence among just normal people and no body saying nothing. all buju have to do is send sizzla for them. bad man dont apologize to no batty boy. smdh i cant believe we will be living in a world where being queer is going to be accepted like this is a normal life.

    (1)(0)
  2. Buju just added Grenada to his list https://www.partygrenada.com/events/longwalktofreedom/

    (0)(0)
  3. Why is the drug trafficker even allowed to move out jamaica. Wasn't not deported for coke pushing. He turned thousands of young jamaican into coke heads. No one sees that. many more murdered because of his drug pushing on his Jamaican people. Some hero. Bajan overall hate Jamaicans anyway, not a fan of Barbados. but. Jamaicans are hypocrites to even be the Bajan land. The wrench squandered any respect he gain

    (2)(4)
  4. Fuck da LGBT community. He already denounced the song and doesn't perform it anymore. That's enough already.

    (3)(2)
  5. first of all, its a great song,second he doesnt perform it anymore , hes no dummy he knows we're in different times now, why even bring it up he already signed off that he wouldnt perform it

    (3)(1)
  6. So you mean to tell me batty man that Barbados so?

    (1)(0)
  7. Never heard it but I'm gonna download it now.. "Boom Boom Bye" mfkas 🖕🏿🖕🏿

    (8)(1)
  8. Oh come on! he apologized for this already,
    Stop trying to shove your dirty shit down peoples throats
    Who effing cares about the song, if you don't like it don't rashole go to the show.
    America did this with Kevin Hart so you all want to jump on the wagon also.
    This LGBT shit really starting to piss me off.
    STOP trying to make people accept this if they don't effing want too.

    (33)(2)
  9. If we turn back the clock and punish everybody for past behavior, who will punish the punisher for his past actions. Let us move on, and stop digging graves to find old sheets.

    (16)(1)
  10. Buju is a Hero for poor black people world wide. F% who don't like it. The world has more problems than a song from 1988

    (49)(3)
  11. So only the Gays and Lesbian can say how they feel? Buju expressed his opinion through song like many other artistes do so what's your problem? God created ADAM and EVE and not ADAM and STEVE

    (57)(8)
  12. They believe that they hv rites so why he can’t say how he feel about a men sleeping with a next men or women sleeping with women he don’t believe in it that’s his opinion just like it’s your choice to do what u doing.. leave that men let him be

    (50)(10)
  13. Bajan Lgbt to community on behakf of Buju banton go Suck yuh mother wid a straw ! Stop force ppl fi accept unno dutty lifestyle b

    (67)(9)
    • But, promoting hate and violence is not going to work! He knows what he has been through; And I am sure he doesn't want to go to through another rough patch again. The communities of people have the power to build a person up and tear them down!

      (5)(10)
      • They can also choose to not listen to the song. There are plenty of dancehall and other genre of songs that celebrate and talk about violence why not call for banning all of those. Why just this one? What makes this group more special than any other human beings on earth? Sing on buju, sing your opinions whether I agree with them or not it's your right.

        (26)(1)
      • They only can pull that crap in Barbados . They all need to grow up and move on . Why complain now after he have traveled the world. No other country is crying about the song. Everyone is entitled to their own feelings and opinions . So be it . If they dont like it go back in the closet and stop complaining . He been apologized , why keep poking at him . Geezrbrothers.

        (9)(0)
  14. A wonder how much you all is going to make a man apologise for a tune he made as a yoot which he done said what he had to say about you people always a play the victim card which get me sick, if he do the tune at the show well that is a different thing so come off his case

    (39)(2)
  15. Just for the record about 12 years ago Mr. Buju denounced his song and apologised for his ignorance at the time. He was in Bdos complimentts of FAS Entertainment and met with the then Chairman, Director and senior staff of the National HIV/AIDS Commission. He even did a PSA for the Commission

    (30)(3)
  16. Juust for the record Mr. Buju has already denounced Boom Bye Bye about 12 years ago when Mr. Freddy Hill and FAS Entertainment brought him to do a show in early December. At that time he apologised for his ignorance at that time and even did a PSA for the National HIV/AIDS Commission

    (9)(3)
  17. Tan sa ih
    They believe it's wrong

    Sa zote cah feh par wrong
    Envaité

    (9)(0)
  18. Stop the bullying, stop the hydrophobic bullying. Blacks in Barbados that on the gay stuff, stop letting whites tell you what to do n say n who to target. Which are your own people. Wake up n move on.

    (37)(1)
  19. bulling is wrong.....its like boom bye bye!!!!

    (25)(2)
  20. Sounding DUMB. . . I support BUJU 100 Percent!!! BOOM BYE BYE!!!

    (56)(4)
    • Boom bye bye inna batty boy head who promote nastiness have fun dead ..let dem stop dey nastynez wah dey gun tell dem children eh ....100% buju

      (24)(1)
  21. This "Peace Off Sheet" has contributed to the deaths of many. Hope he reaps what he sows and finds zero peace.

    (2)(80)
    • tell barbados go and sleep the days for this stupidness is done leave buju alone they cannont stop him you vex you cannot sing like him sing buju sing what ever you want that's you freedom we love your songs

      (1)(1)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.