Tag Archives: Reggae

Disney Starlet Samples Buju Banton

BB_ChampionDisney superstar Selena Gomez dropped her highly anticipated solo project Stars Dance (Hollywood Records) earlier this week. One of the hottest tracks on the album happens to be the ridiculously infectious “Like A Champion, which opens with the booming voice of GRAMMY-winning reggae icon Buju Banton, as sampled from his mid-’90s hit single “Champion.”

Selena GomezThe original “Champion” was featured on Buju Banton’s critically acclaimed 1995 album, Til Shiloh. Eighteen years later, the catchy dancehall tune is still a fan favorite, garnering regular airplay on reggae radio in Jamaica and internationally. Gomez re-sings part of Banton’s hook in this sexy new version, co-produced by powerhouse pop music writers, Daniel James, Leah Haywood, Bebe Rexha and Peter Thomas.

((( NOW HEAR THIS )))

“Like A Champion”

Selena Gomez

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Reggae Icon Buju Banton Takes Fight For Freedom To Capitol Hill

Free Buju Press Event In Washington D.C. on Monday, Nov. 5th

On Monday, November 5th, activists, educators, friends and supporters of GRAMMY Award-winning Reggae star Buju Banton (née Mark Anthony Myrie), will gather for a press conference on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. to officially announce the filing of a petition for a Writ of Certiorari.

“Hundreds of thousands, if not millions of people are convinced that Mark Anthony Myrie was unjustly targeted and convicted in the United States court in Florida,” explains Banton’s new attorney, Chokwe Lumumba. “We request that the highest court of the land review this injustice and overturn it.” He adds, “We are determined to fight for Myrie’s freedom until he is vindicated.”

Lumumba Once Represented The Late, Great Rapper Tupac Shakur

Lumumba, in association with the Buju Banton Defense Support Committee and the Gargamel Music Family, is organizing the press conference. Invited guest speakers include national head of the NAACP, Ben Jealous; civil rights activist, actor and comedian Dick Gregory; Dr. Carolyn Cooper, author and lecturer at University of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica; Brother Aula Sumbry, a radio host and Chairman of the NAACP Prison Committee in Trenton, New Jersey; GRAMMY Award-winning Reggae artist, Stephen Marley, and many more.

The icon Banton was convicted last year for “conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute” and “using the wires to facilitate a drug trafficking offense,” federal offenses that together carry a 10-year penalty. A third conviction, “knowing and intentionally carrying a firearm to further a drug offense” (5 year minimum), was thrown out at his sentencing hearing. The U.S. Court of Appeals reversed that decision, however, and Banton will be re-sentenced in a Tampa courthouse early next week.

The Free Buju Press Conference will be held at The Methodist Building (100 Maryland Ave. N.E.) — located across the street from the Supreme Court — at 1pm sharp. Fans in the Washington Metropolitan Area are welcome to come and show their support.

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Banton Back To Pinellas County Facility Awaiting Re-Sentencing

pinellas

BB Bounced Back To PCJ

Reggae icon Buju Banton has been moved from FCI Miami and is now back at Pinellas County Jail in Clearwater, FL, where he awaits a re-sentencing hearing with trial Judge James Moody, Jron Tuesday, October 30th.

Fans and friends can write to him at the new address below:

Mark Anthony Myrie – Docket # 1519831

CEN-6C2-UN02-04-004

Pinellas County Jail

14400 49th Street North

Clearwater, Florida 33762-2877

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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.

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Never Give Up The Fight… Attorneys For Banton File Motion For New Trial

By now you’ve all heard how the United States Court of Appeals, 11th Circuit basically disregarded the Appeal filed on behalf of Grammy-winning Reggae music icon, Buju Banton, and upheld his controversial conviction for “conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute” and “using the wires to facilitate a drug trafficking offense.”

Adding insult to injury, the overwhelmingly conservative three judge panel led by Chief Justice Joel Fredrick Dubina (a George H. W. Bush appointee), alongside  Circuit Judge Susan Harrell Black (another George H. W. Bush appointee) and Circuit Judge Stanley Marcus (a default Bill Clinton appointee), also reversed trial judge James Moody Jr.‘s common sense decision to throw out a third conviction at Buju’s sentencing hearing last summer: “knowing and intentionally possessing a firearm in the furtherance of a drug trafficking offense,” which carries an additional 5 year penalty.

It clearly didn’t matter much to Dubina, Black or Marcus that Buju had no priors and has never been involved in the drug trade. Nor did it matter that he did not participate in any negotiations nor was he present at the deal that actually did go down between well-paid government snitch Alexander Johnson and former co-defendants James Mack and Ian Thomas.

As defense attorney David Oscar Markus recently pointed out “a good man is in jail for talking a big game.” He’s also paying the price for simply fighting the powers that be. You may recall that after the first trial eneded in a mistrial, prosecutor James Preston Jr., venemously amended the original indictment, tweaking the gun charge and adding two additional charges, in his attempt to make something stick… And it worked. All this for a man who has spent the last 20 years of his life making incredibly uplifting music for his legion of loyal fans around the world. War on drugs? We think not… This is a war on Buju Banton.

Bouncing back from the latest blow to their client, late yesterday afternoon, the legal team for Banton filed a Renewed Motion For A New Trial with the district Court in Tampa. The 27-page motion duly requests a new trial on all counts, or alternately, a new trial on the gun count only. To be clear, if no new trial is granted by Judge Moody, Buju will automatically be sentenced to an additional 5 years on top to the 10 he is currently serving. Team Banton has nothing to lose and everything to gain by filing this latest motion and we pray that the request is granted.

In the meantime, fans can take solace in knowing that Buju is indeed holding firm despite the loss of the appeal and the harrowing prospect of doing even more time. He is reading avidly, has some access to a guitar (there are 2 or 3 in the facility) and is writing new songs, plus he is even teaching a class at FCI Miami, where he is presently being housed. We encourage you to keep him in your prayers, continue writing those letters of encouragement, and, if you should feel so inclined, drop a little something on his commissary.

MARK ANTHONY MYRIE – 86700-004

FCI MIAMI

FEDERAL CORRECTIONAL INSTITUTION

P.O. BOX 779800

MIAMI, FL 33177

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Banton Legal Team Blasts Back In Final Appeal Brief

Lawyers for Jamaican music icon, Buju Banton, recently filed a final brief in response to the government’s response to their appeal as well as the government’s own appeal of Judge James Moody‘s decision to throw out the gun charges during sentencing in Banton’s controversial criminal case. For a quick overview of the case and these latest arguments, check out the article posted by writer Chris Sweeney, who also penned the recent Miami New Times cover story on Buju Banton. Or feel free to read the entire Reply Brief of the Appellant and Response Brief of the Cross Appellee. It goes without saying that David Oscar Markus and his team at Markus & Markus Law left no stone unturned.

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Buju Banton Graces Cover Of French Magazine

Buju Got Reggae Vibes

The Gargamel Music Family is pleased to share that Jamaican music icon, Buju Banton, is featured on the cover of the popular French magazine, Reggae Vibes, available on European newsstands now. The accompanying story, written by veteran UK journalist, John Masouri, takes an in-depth look at the controversial case that ultimately landed the beloved Reggae star in a federal penitentiary, and more importantly, pays homage to the artist’s 20+ year career in music that has touched the lives of so many people around the world.

“I chose to do a cover with Buju to tell the truth about him, about his musical career, and about his trial,” explains the magazine’s long time editor, Gilbert Pytel. “Buju is one of the best Reggae artists in the world. People should not forget this! The Reggae massive in France waits for his comeback.”

Back in the United States, Buju is also featured in Hip-Hop Weekly‘s new special issue, “Hip-Hop Behind Bars.” The piece brings readers up to speed on the case and impending appeal, which was filed by the artist’s attorneys late last year.

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