Archive for the ‘prison’ Tag
Vybz Kartel is not recording any songs in prison in case you were wondering as there seems to be a few new songs circulating the airwaves.
This is the statement from his PR people.
Adidjahiem Records would like to make it clear, that Adidja ‘Vybz Kartel’ Palmer has not recorded any material since his arrest in 2011. Any songs containing material from Vybz Kartel that were released after his arrest, were recorded by the artist in previous years.
Various songs containing material from Vybz Kartel have surfaced since his arrest, including a collaboration with Busta Rhymes and a song titled “Back to Life,” which have sparked rumors that the artist has been recording at the Horizon Adult Remand Centre. Adidjahiem Records would like to make it explicitly clear that both songs were recorded prior to his arrest. The single “Wine and Go Down” by Busta Rhymes ft. Vybz Kartel was recorded at Donovan ‘Don Corleon’ Bennett’s studio in 2010 in a session that was broadcast live on ustream. The lyrics contained in “Back to Life” were also recorded in 2010.
“The lyrics from “Back to Life,” that was released by U.I.M. Records, were recorded by Adidjahiem Records during the Dudus extradition – the original title was “Me Waan Go Home,” says Elvis Redwood of So Unique Records, who was an in-house engineer for Adidjahiem Records at the time. “Those same lyrics were re-used on a different track to create “Back to Life.”
When someone mentioned to me a short while back, “you know Kartel is in prison?” My reaction was, “I wouldn’t be surprised”. But I’ve still been enjoying his track ‘Tell you seh’ nonetheless.
It seems that the path to prison could have been foretold as there were growing bad vibes swirling around the man. Last time I was in JA, a number of people were talking to me about how they hated him and they told me of alleged violent attacks mentioning his name. I put this down to a general ground swell of rumour which inevitably follows a man like Kartel who courts controversy and has an entourage all trying to live up to a reputation in a place where violence and gun crime is more than just part of the lexicon. Add to this mix, a self destructive element – skin bleaching and the recent spat with Corey Todd – all signal a ticking time bomb. In a small place like JA, making more enemies than friends is a dangerous position to find yourself.
The real question which of course must be asked is, ‘is he guilty?’ If he is, then this would spell the end of the Gaza era.
For an internationally renowned singer and reggae star, more used to partying and concerts and drugs, 10 years is indeed a long time for Buju Banton to spend in a Florida jail. But he’s reported to have took the news calmly and he was lucky in a way as the judge threw out an extra gun charge. So it could have been worse. He said in a statement, “The days that lie ahead are filled with despair, but I have courage and grace and I’m hopeful, and that is sufficient to carry me through, the man is not dead. Don’t call him a ghost.”
I was kind of surprised as my last post indicates, I thought things may have gone the other way after the last trial, but the audio and video evidence could not be overcome.
But this does not have to mean the end of his music, he managed to release his grammy award winning album whilst inside. He will have plenty of time to mull over lyrics and melodies, but he probably won’t feel like singing just yet.
After two weeks in police lock-up, the dancehall DJ Vybz Kartel was released without charge on Friday July 16th. Now there are reports that he is going to sue the authorities for loss of earnings.
His lawyer, Valerie Neita Robertson (it was Chris Tavares – Finson before) is quoted as saying that the National Security Minister signed a release warrant for him on July 13th. So it seems odd that the police held him for 3 days on top of that. This is a good article which explains some of the background to the gang affiliations in the area of Portmore where Kartel was brought up.
Kartel was held under the state of emergency powers, but it was never clear what he was even being held for. He gave himself in, when he heard he was wanted for questioning.
Now he’s been released, it does not look good any way you look at it. In terms of the justice system, human rights, detention powers, use or mis-use of emergency powers. If this can happen to someone as high profile as Kartel, just think how ordinary people are being treated, with no-one ever getting to hear about it.
So Vybz Kartel has been in a police cell now for nearly a week and set to stay there for another month. From what I can see, it’s over gang activities in the Portmore area where he’s from.
Recently when I was in JA, I bumped into these guys who film music videos and they were really hating on Kartel big time. It seemed to be more of an issue for them since the death of Oneil from Voicemail. As I have said on this blog before, I have seen the links between dancehall artists and gangs before, but Kartel and his camp are the subject of a lot of rumours. I can’t say how involved he is in this shooting or this beating.
But what I can say is, it’s hard to be a dancehall artist and not have a gun or be part of a gang which offers some protection and status.
The prison riot at the Horizon Adult Remand Centre in Kingston is just what is happening to Jamaican society as a whole. The riot was predictable as this has happened before and also happened another time and another time – too many times to mention in fact. Will any lessons be learned? Well none have been learned so far.
Will there be an investigation that will amount to anything? Probably not and the reason is because the Jamaican government and society think that they have more important things to worry about, rather than looking after its’ prisoners and criminals. But this kind of thinking would be a big mistake because if you don’t care about the people in jail, then you probably don’t care about other people you don’t know, it’s about lacking sympathy, lacking forgiveness, not caring.
I’m in a harsh mood because I was talking to some elderly Jamaicans about how things used to be in the 1960s (not that long ago!!) and how you used to be able to trust people, but nowadays people are more likely to want to cheat you, rape you, lie and threaten.
Back to the subject matter – this riot was predictable – if you’re not going to give people water then what do you expect? The human rights group, Jamaicans for Justice are trying to push for an investigation (someone needs to give Dr Gomes a gold medal). The prisons are overcrowded and underfunded – god knows what’s going to happen when the anti-gang drive comes into force in March – the national security minister says that he wants to put them all in prisons – it seems he’s asking for more riots. if I were a prison officer in one of any of Jamaica’s jails, i would be even more worried than usual!
An issue which seems to be troubling the government over their decision to reinstate the death penalty, is the worry that foreign governments will stop making aid contributions.
At a time when Jamaica’s economy needs every penny it can get its’ hands on, the coffers will undoubtedly miss this donor money. Senator Ronald Robinson says that this should not stop Jamaica from driving down the capital punishment road.
I have been listening to a discussion among Jamaican prisoners on Freefm radio – speaking from GP, Kingston’s notorious male prison. I posted about this station and what they do on this blog before.
The prisoners spoke a lot of sense.
They raise the point that putting the death penalty on the table could actually increase the murder rate as murderers seek to “get rid” of any witnesses to their crime.
They also say that the justice system is in no way rigorous enough to ensure that innocent men will not die. The interview of these guys speaking will be broadcast on the BBC World Service as part of the Your Story project.
Jamaica has ended its moratorium on the death penalty which has been in place since 1988. Now that’s been lifted after a free vote in Jamaica’s Parliament, where 34 voted for bringing the death penalty back, 15 were against it and 10 didn’t vote either way, the nine men on death row have something to look forward to.
I personally don’t think you can link the rise in murders with the fact the death penalty was frozen but I guess we will see whether it does or not now.
I would like to hear from the shottas and the dons whether they’ll be thinking twice about whether to organise that drive by shooting now.
Is jamaica’s justice system rigorous enough and does it contain enough checks and balances to ensure that the people wrongly convicted or crimes do not lose their lives? i know personally of two people who served sentences for crimes they did not commit. But then, they had committed other crimes so they did not feel too aggrieved about it and they were not facing death either.
At the moment, I am mainly listening to freefm, a radio station broadcasting from the General Penitentiary (GP) on South Camp Road in Kingston. Inmates and staff are running the shows. At the moment they are talking about kids being abused and parents pimping out their children.
They have a blog too, you can read more about the project here
It’s a strange discussion to have. They talk about how to stop the violence that is going on against children. It’s not very constructive – they are saying to hang those who commit these crimes!
I am trying to get more photos from inside the prison.
It’s interesting to hear the real opinions of men and young men who are currently there behind bars.
They have also mentioned their pleasure at seeing Obama get the top job!