BURRO BANTON

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Donovan Spalding popularly known as Burro Banton was born on December 27, 1956 in Kingston, Jamaica. Burro Banton earned his dancehall reggae deejay popularity during the mid 1980s to the 1990s. He is most famous for his anthem “Boom Wah Dis”, which was recorded on the Steelie and Clevie riddim called Street Sweeper.

Burro Banton emerged a chart topping deejay during the mid 1980s at the beginning of the digital dancehall craze started by King Jammy that also featured artistes like Cutty Ranks. Burro Banton is known for his aggressive style, deep gruff voice and he is the inspiration for many modern dancehall artistes such Buju Banton, Bounty Killer and Elephant Man.

While deejaying in the late 1970s, Burro Banton would look to Ranking Joe for inspiration but it was not until 1978 when he first linked with the sound system called Black Hoover, then he moved to the Roots Unlimited sound system. Burro Banton finally made his real big break as a performer in 1982, while deejaying for Gemini sound system this trend continued throughout 1984. Throughout the middle and late 1980s, he worked on Volcano and later the Kilamanjaro sound system, where he shared feature billing with Super Cat and Nicodemus.

Burro Banton did his first recording for the legendary producer Henry “Junjo” Lawes, Volcano’s owner, his first LP was released in 1985. Burro Banton recorded on original riddims made with real drums and bass guitar, pre-drum machine and digital computerization.

In the 1990s, Burro Banton continued working alongside Super Cat and Nicodemus. Super Cat formed the Wild Apache label, on which Burro Banton recorded his first number 1 hit, “Boom Wah Dis”. When Super Cat signed with Columbia/SME Records, Burro Banton joined forces with the ace producer Bobby Konders and the Massive B label in 1992, this was when Burro Banton recorded numerous number 1 hits such as Washington Session”, “Tek A St” and “Westmoreland Sensi”.

Massive B released Burro Banton’s second LP, “The Original Banton”, in 1995-1996. In 1998, Burro Banton continued recording with Massive B and was sought out by Steelie and Clevie, one of Jamaica’s most respected production team. Steelie’s ingenious intuition suggested that he revoiced “Boom Wah Dis” on the deadly Street Sweeper riddim. Burro Banton agreed and scored another number 1 hit from Kingston, Jamaica to New York to Miami and beyond. “Boom Wah Dis” was in heavy rotation around the world for many months in Reggae and Caribbeanmusic circles.

In 2000, he continued to extend his career with Massive B with the track titled “Politicians” on the Lickshot Rewind riddim that delves into hard times in the inner cities of Kingston and wishes the politicians would keep their promises of a better life. In addition he released “Phenomenon 2” on the Dun Dem riddim, on which he big up all the ganja men. Burro Banton latest efforts on Massive B’s Rock, Penincillin and Tempo riddims features a number 1 European single called “Jah Jah Rules”.

Burro Banton has been touring constantly over the last ten years across Asia, Europe, and throughout North America. He has performed on stages with Capleton and Bounty Killer, just to name a few and stands out in his performances due to his originality.

Burro Banton continues to record commercially successful and critically acclaimed music, including his recent hit song “Badder Dan Dem”.

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