Tag Archives: Gargamel

Buju Banton Gives Thanks For All The Birthday Wishes

Jamaican music icon Buju Banton gives thanks to everyone who sent cards wishing him a happy birthday. The GRAMMY-winning Reggae artist turned 39 years old on Sunday, July 15th. In addition to the hundreds of cards and letters he received from friends, family and fans, selectors paid tribute by playing blocks of Buju’s music on radio stations across the globe.

“To all who remembered me on this day, those who took the time to send me a card and those who played my music, especially all the radio DJs and personalities who keep the fire burning,” says Buju, “I thank you for sending strength through these times… Jah live.”

Buju also sends a special shout out to all the folks who participated in the Free Buju Birthday Sweepstakes and Trivia Contest held last week by the good folks at Zion Rootswear. The winners will receive an official Buju Banton gift pack featuring an official Free Buju T-Shirt and button, a Buju Banton album, 8×10 photo, poster and stickers, all courtesy of Zion and Gargamel Music.

Official Buju Banton merchandise is available at ZionRootswear.com. For those of you outside the United States, international orders are now being processed directly through customer service: cs@zionrootswear.com.

11 Comments

Filed under Buju Banton General, Buju Banton Music

Gargamel Focused On Freedom In 2012

We Pray For Freedom In 2012

Greetings in the name of the Most High! As we mark the end of 2011, Buju Banton and the entire Gargamel family would like to take a moment to thank the fans around the world for your unwavering support during these difficult times. Indeed, it is not an easy road, but it helps to know that we are not walking it alone.

Buju has been receiving all of  your correspondence and apologizes for not being able to answer every single letter personally. Keep them coming, still, as they are a true source of upliftment in the midst of so much uncertainty.

While we patiently await a final ruling on Buju’s case from the United States Court of Appeals, Team Gargamel remains hopeful, prayerful and focused on freedom… We encourage you to do the same.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

20 Comments

Filed under Buju Banton General, United States vs Buju Banton

Buju Banton Appeal Brief Filed

Team Gargamel is extremely pleased to announce that Buju’s attorney of record, David Oscar Markus of Markus & Markus Law, filed the Brief Of The Appellant, on behalf of Mark Anthony Myrie p/k/a Buju Banton, with the United States Court of Appeals earlier this morning. The gripping, 73-page document thoroughly picks apart the squirrely details surrounding the case of “The Recording Artist vs The Con Artist.”

The Appeal itself is broken down into three main arguments:

I.  AS BOTH A MATTER OF LAW AND FACT, MYRIE  IS NOT GUILTY OF CONSPIRACY TO DISTRIBUTE COCAINE OR TO AID AND ABET OTHERS IN USING THE TELEPHONE TO FACILITATE A COCAINE DISTRIBUTION CONSPIRACY

II.  IN THE ALTERNATIVE, THE GOVERNMENT’S EFFORTS TO IMPLICATE MYRIE CONSTITUTED ENTRAPMENT BECAUSE MYRIE LACKED PREDISPOSITION TO PARTICIPATE IN A DRUG CONSPIRACY

III.  THIS CASE MUST BE DISMISSED DUE TO THE DISTRICT COURT’S VIOLATION OF THE SPEEDY TRIAL ACT

In addition to the brief, Mr. Markus has requested an oral argument, where 3 judges listen to the case, “because it will assist the Court in understanding the multiple legal issues presented in this case.” Only 10% of all appeal cases are granted this opportunity.

The Court of Appeals will decide whether to allow oral argument, and when all is said and done, will usually take between a month and a year to rule.

13 Comments

Filed under United States vs Buju Banton

The Caged Bird Sings Of Freedom

The caged bird sings

With a fearful trill

Of things unknown

But longed for still

And his tune is heard

On the distant hill

For the caged bird

Sings of freedom.

Dr. Maya Angelou (from I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings)

Freedom! Photo By: Robert Cooper

Greetings in the name of the Most High…

As you can imagine, the Gargamel Music Family’s entire world was shattered by the outcome of Buju’s trial. Two months have passed and the heartache has not eased at all. We lost a long, hard-fought battle but, alas, this legal war wages on. We remain confident in Buju’s innocence and vigilant in our fight for his ultimate freedom. There is nuff work to be done and the time has come for us to pick up the pieces and march forward in the struggle.

Buju’s strength and resolve throughout this painful ordeal has been nothing short of inspiring. He is a true soldier who continues to stand firm in his beliefs and will not be broken. He earnestly thanks his friends for life — the fans worldwide — for your unyielding support and only asks that you remember him in a positive light and continue to play his music in the days to come.

We encourage you to send uplifting letters to Buju at the address below:

Mark Anthony Myrie – Docket # 1443397

CEN-4C1-UN01-01-001

Pinellas County Jail

14400 49th Street North

Clearwater, Florida 33762-2877

If you feel like you want to top up B’s commissary, include a money order with all of the above information written on it (Mark’s legal name/docket number, etc…) and place it in the envelope with your letter. The guards who open the mail will make sure it’s added onto his account.

SENTENCING & APPEAL

We recently sat down with Buju’s attorney, David Oscar Markus, who took the time to school us on how the sentencing and appeal processes works so we have a better sense of what to expect.

The trial and sentencing judge, James Moody, Jr. still has yet to rule on either of the post trial motions filed by Markus back in February: 1) motion for judgement of acquittal  2) motion for a new trial. Markus filed a separate third motion for bond pending sentencing and appeal that he is also waiting to hear from the Court on.

Buju’s sentencing is currently scheduled for June 23rd. While Judge Moody can take other things into account, he still must abide by the current mandatory minimum drug sentencing guidelines, which based on the three convictions: 1) Conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 5 or more kilograms of a substance containing a detectable amount of cocaine  2) knowing and intentionally possessing a firearm in the furtherance of a drug trafficking offense and 3) using the wires to facilitate a drug trafficking offense, bring the mandatory minimum in this case to 15 years.

  • After sentencing, Markus has 14 days to file a notice of appeal. Then he will order the trial transcripts, which will take about 30 days.
  • As soon as Markus gets the transcripts, he has 40 days to file a brief, which will contain his arguments.
  • The government gets 40 days to respond. Markus gets 40 days to reply.
  • Then the Court will decide whether to allow oral argument (where 3 judges listen to the case). Only 10% of all appeal cases are granted this opportunity.
  • After oral argument, the Court usually takes between a month and a year to rule.

Those who wish to donate funds toward the appeal may send a wire transfer to the official Buju Banton Defense Fund set up by his attorney:

Markus & Markus, PLLC
(Defense Fund for Buju Banton)
Citibank, N A
Coral Way Branch
1600 Coral Way
Miami, FL 33145
ABA # 266086554
Account # 9118130472

You may also make a donation via Paypal. Just log in and direct monies to FREEBUJU@gmail.com

THE VOICE OF JAMAICA WILL NOT BE SILENCED!
The Gargamel Music Family remains steadfast in our efforts to promote and preserve the musical legacy of Buju Banton. As he reiterated in his Miami New Times cover story in January of this year, “they can lock the flesh but they can never lock the spirit of Rasta.” We intend to keep Buju’s spirit moving and his voice soaring — through music… And we already have several projects in development:

Buju Banton & Friends: Before The Dawn Concert DVD

We are working out the logistics to make the official DVD of the Before The Dawn Concert available for sale later this year. We are aware of the weak bootleg circulating on the streets and will deal with the culprits accordingly. In the meantime, we just ask that the fans hold on and support the real product when it comes out. It will definitely be worth the wait.

New Buju Banton Studio Album

While the General was out on bail and under house arrest he finished up some tracks for an album co-produced with longtime UK brethren, Blacker Dread. The pair previously worked together on the rousing 2010 anthem “Innocent” featured on Buju’s Grammy-winning album Before The Dawn (Gargamel Music). This new album will drop some time in 2012 on Gargamel Music, Inc.

Buju Banton Live Album

Team Gargamel has collected some amazing live material over the past few years and we plan to release the first Buju Banton live album some time in the near future.

Buju Banton Coffee Table Book

For the past few years we’ve been shooting with esteemed celebrity photographer Jonathan Mannion (Too Bad and Rasta Got Soul album covers) to produce a photography book that visually captures the excitement and frenetic energy of Buju’s live performances along with some exclusive behind-the-scenes moments on the road with the artist and his band.

Gargamel Music Website

At long last, we are in the process of revamping the Gargamel Music website. www.GARGAMELMUSIC.com will be the hub for all things Buju Banton on the web. We will also be selling authentic Buju Banton merchandise, including the Official Free Buju T-Shirts, which are now available in a Limited Edition Red in addition to the original Black and Green color waves. And keep your eyes peeled for the brand new Buju Banton Logo Tee that will be available at relaunch!

The Gargamel Music Family Thanks You For Your Support!

4 Comments

Filed under Buju Banton General, Buju Banton Music, United States vs Buju Banton

Prophetic New Buju Banton Album Before The Dawn Available For Pre-Sale Now On iTunes & Amazon.com

Gargamel Music, Inc. is pleased to announce that reggae superstar, Buju Banton’s prophetic new album, Before The Dawn will drop in North America (and Japan) on Tuesday, September 28, 2010. The release date for the UK and France has been set for Monday, October 4, however, it will be available in the rest of Europe a few days earlier on Friday, October 1. Fans around the world may pre-order the album now on both iTunes and Amazon.com.

Recorded at Banton’s own Gargamel Music studio in Kingston, Jamaica, Before The Dawn literally pierces the soul with traditional roots on the track “Do Good,”classic rock on the tune “No Smoking At All,” and heartfelt reggae on the especially potent “Battered & Bruised.” The album’s unofficial anthem, “Innocent”strikes a highly personal chord that will resonate deeply with longtime fans.

Physical copies of the album contain a special note written from inside the Pinellas County Jail in Clearwater, Florida, where Buju Banton has been patiently awaiting trial for the past nine months. He will finally have his day in court when the trial, which has been riddled with delays, kicks off on Monday, September 20, in Tampa, Florida.

4 Comments

Filed under Buju Banton Music

Buju Banton Trial Delayed Again… This Time ‘Til September 20th

Banton looks forward to his day in court.

Team Gargamel has learned that Buju Banton‘s day in court has been pushed back for the fifth time! Previously rescheduled to start on September 13th, the long-delayed trial has now been set to begin on Monday, September 20, 2010. The high-profile, highly controversial case will be tried by Assistant U.S. Attorney, James C. Preston, Jr. and presided over by The Honorable Judge James S. Moody, Jr. at the Sam M. Gibbons U.S. District Courthouse in Tampa, Florida.

Represented by esteemed South Florida Super Lawyer, David Oscar Markus, the Reggae icon is looking forward to finally having the opportunity to defend himself. It goes without saying that Banton is also amped up about the forthcoming release of his prophetic new album, Before The Dawn, which will drop just eight days later on Tuesday, September 28th in the United States and Japan. The release date for most of Europe is Monday, October 1st, however, for the UK and France the date will be Friday October 4th.

21 Comments

Filed under Buju Banton General, Buju Banton Music, United States vs Buju Banton

Buju Banton Trial Date Rescheduled For September 13th — New Album To Drop On September 28th

After months of senseless delays, Jamaican music star Buju Banton will finally have his day in court. The Honorable Judge James S. Moody, Jr. has reset the trial start date for Monday, September 13, 2010 at the Sam M. Gibbons US District Courthouse in Tampa, Florida. This is the fourth time the trial has been rescheduled so only time will tell if it will actually convene as planned.

In other Buju Banton news, Gargamel Music, Inc. is prepping the release of his ninth studio album, Before The Dawn, which is set to drop in North America on Tuesday, September 28, 2010. The 10 powerful tracks that comprise this very special project are some of the more prophetic songs written by Banton since his extraordinary entry into the music business over twenty years ago.

Recorded mostly at his Gargamel Music studio in Kingston, Jamaica, Before The Dawn literally pierces the soul with traditional roots, easy rock and especially heartfelt reggae. The album’s unofficial anthem “Innocent” strikes a highly personal chord that will resonate deeply with longtime Buju Banton fans.

13 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Banton Moved Back To General Population–Team Gargamel Preps To Fight For His Life

Buju Prepares For The Fight Of His Life

The Gargamel Music Family is pleased to confirm that music icon, Buju Banton, has indeed been moved back to general population at the Pinellas County Jail after spending over 30 days in maximum security for the seemingly minor infraction of giving his food away to a fellow inmate.

The move has lifted Buju’s spirits tremendously as he is able to move around a bit more freely, plus he has access to hot water and other simple provisions that were not readily available in South Division aka “max.”

Buju wants his fans to know that all of the guards on his floor are treating him with the utmost respect and he also says he is receiving so much mail from around the world that the jail is even considering giving him his own mail bag! Buju is thankful for all the uplifting correspondence and promises to write back to his supporters as much as he can.

Well wishers can continue to hail up the boss at the new updated address below:

Mark Anthony Myrie – Docket # 1387202

*CEN-4C3-UN03-04-002

Pinellas County Jail

14400 49th Street North

Clearwater, Florida 33762-2877

Please note *new housing info, which must be included in address to ensure delivery.

In the meantime, Buju remains prayerful and optimistic as Team Gargamel, led by esteemed criminal defense attorney, David Oscar Markus, prepare to fight for his liberty and his life. The trial date is presently still set for Monday, June 21st at the Sam M. Gibbons Federal US District Courthouse in Tampa, Florida.

The high-profile, highly controversial case will be tried by Assistant US Attorney, James C. Preston, Jr. and presided over by The Honorable Judge James S. Moody, Jr.

5 Comments

Filed under United States vs Buju Banton

Buju Banton Nominated For Trio Of International Reggae & World Music Awards (IRAWMA)

The Gargamel Music family is thrilled to announce that Jamaican music icon, Buju Banton, has been nominated for a trio of 2010 International Reggae & World Music Awards (IRAWMA): Recording Artist Of The Year, Best Album for Rasta Got Soul (Gargamel Music) and Best Crossover Song for “Can’t Be My Lover, his recent hit collaboration with R&B star, John Legend.

Banton and the Gargamel Music family sincerely thank IRAWMA founder Mr. Ephraim Martin, the entire IRAWMA staff, and of course, the fans for the love and continued support at this time. The 29th Annual International Reggae & World Music Awards ceremony will be held on Sunday, May 2nd at York College Performing Arts Center in Jamaica (Queens), New York.

Fans may cast ballots online at the official awards website!

~ !!CLICK HERE TO VOTE FOR BUJU BANTON NOW!!~

2 Comments

Filed under Buju Banton General, Buju Banton Music

Gargamel Music Blasts Back!

The Gargamel Music Family is disgusted by the vehement persecution of international Reggae star, Buju Banton, by a legion of misguided gay activists. We find it appalling that the LA Gay & Lesbian Center and the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) would spend tens of thousands of dollars to take out a full page ad in Variety – solely to blast Banton’s well-deserved Grammy nomination for his acclaimed album Rasta Got Soul (Gargamel Music) — when those resources could have been better spent lending a helping hand to our suffering Haitian brothers and sisters.

Buju Deserves This GrammyIn the form of an open letter to Recording Academy President Neil Portnow, who stands by the nomination, the ad makes the sensational claim that Buju Banton has “promoted the murder of gay people throughout his career” despite the fact that his overwhelmingly positive music catalog proves otherwise. Predictably, they cite the twenty-year-old anti-buggery missive “Boom Bye Bye,” without ever contextualizing that the song was written by a 15-year-old Buju in response to a widely reported man-boy rape case back in Jamaica.

Replete with misinformation, the letter curiously goes on to say that Buju Banton’s classic hit single “Batty Rider” glorifies the shooting of gay men – even though the song is actually about the popular skin-tight short-shorts young women wore to the clubs back in the ’90s.

Meanwhile, not a peep from the LA Gay & Lesbian Center or GLAAD about white rap star, Eminem, who has a much more recent history of “verbally assaulting” gays and who continues to write songs riddled with “anti-gay sentiment.” His latest album, Relapse is up for several awards this year and he will be performing at the ceremony on Sunday.

The 2010 Grammy nod for Rasta Got Soul is Buju Banton’s fourth. The artist was previously acknowledged by the Recording Academy for his albums Too Bad (2007) Friends for Life (2004) and Inna Heights (1999). Since its release in April 2009, Rasta Got Soul has received rave reviews from such prestigious media outlets as BillboardExclaim!Hip-Hop Weekly and All Music Guide, who called the album an “instant classic.” A documentary-style video for the new single “Optimistic Soul” will premiere in Jamaica soon.

37 Comments

Filed under Buju Banton & The Grammys, Buju Banton General, Buju Banton Media Watch, Buju Banton Music