Two local show promoters have described the life imprisonment of popular dancehall artist Vybz Kartel as a big hit to the entertainment industry, not only in Jamaica but also the Caribbean.
Freddie Hill told Barbados TODAY that Kartel’s being jailed today for life for the murder of Clive “Lizard” Williams, was sad “because he is a talented guy”.
Hill, who worked with the artiste around 2005 when he brought him in to headline a show, said that while there was often controversy surrounding some of his lyrics, the reality was that young people gravitated towards his music.
“He is a good songwriter, and he is a lyrical genius and he will be missed in the music world. I worked with him in the past and he seemed to be a very nice guy,” he said of the artiste whose real name is Adidja Palmer.
Jason Simmons, an aspiring promoter and director of the Summer Jam Sundays promotion group also agreed that Kartel was one ofthe biggest Jamaican entertainers. Nevertheless, he said, he had to pay if he was guilty of taking a life.
“It’s a big loss in the music industry especially in Jamaica and the dub [genre], but if he did the crime, he should do the time,” Simmons said.
He added: “His lyrics sometimes could be a bit raw and negative but . . . he is a big icon and young people listen to him so if he could just channel that into a positive direction he could have been a good spokesperson in Jamaica, Barbados and the Caribbean.”
Kartel and the three other men convicted for Williams’ murder were each given life sentences in a Jamaican court this morning by Justice Lennox Campbell. He will have to serve 35 years before he is eligible for parole.