Buju Banton, one of Reggae’s greatest acts of all-time, has made a phenomenal leap into the musical stratosphere by signing with JAY-Z’s Roc Nation label.
Roc Nation was started back in 2008 by rapper JAY-Z and as since amassed a beautifully, talented roster of artiste across various genres, such as rock, pop, hip-hop, Latin, and Reggae. Some of the associated acts include Big Sean, Cassanova, Dj Khaled, Fabolous, Fat Joe, Shakira, The Lox, Yello Claw, and Damian Junior Gong, Marley. This recent signing of the Gargamel makes him the second reggae act to be signed to the label, following Gong’s signing in 2016.
Another one of Roc Nation’s acts and one of the biggest names from the Caribbean, Rihanna, actually helped to make the connection with the label, confessed Buju Banton during an interview with Rolling Stones. Buju made connections with Rihanna during the Barbados leg of his Long Walk to Freedom tour that kicked off in Jamaica to a well-received crowd of over 30,000 at the National stadium.
The label executives seem excited to have the reggae superstar on the team. Co-presidents, Shari Bryant and Omar Grant, lamented, “It’s an honor to work with a legend and trailblazer of Buju’s caliber — His music catalog is simply unparalleled. We’re thrilled to help propel his legacy forward and look forward to amplifying his resurgence on a global level.”
Banton also seems morally connected with the label’s values and expressed they share the same priorities. According to Buju Banton, there is an aim “to do things independently and show that we can foster a unity in our people that can’t be emulated anywhere else.”
Buju’s last album, Before the Dawn, earned him a Grammy award back in 2011. With 10 years of reflection spent behind bars, plus a new label, expectations of a full-length project from Buju Banton for 2020 are running pretty high. The major distribution deal between Roc Nation and Sony Music should be deemed pretty useful for Banton if all goes well with his new label. This means his music could be reaching new reggae fans all over the world.
While an album is not yet here, you can still enjoy the various singles the artiste has released. Singles such as the Dave Kelly produced “Trust” and recently released “Steppa,” have all received raving reviews from fans all across the globe.