There is no denying that Buju Banton’s Long Walk to Freedom tour has been the best thing to happen for reggae in a very long time. However, for reggae fans who were patiently waiting for the Rasta to release a new song, they might be disappointed in Banton’s effort.
“Country for sale” is being marketed as a new song from Buju Banton but Jamaicans and real reggae fans will know that there is nothing new about the song. Either the song was recorded over a decade ago but not released or Buju Banton wrote the long while he was behind prison walls and listening to some of Capleton’s music.
The selling out of Jamaica is a topic that Capleton has touched on in numerous of his songs to the point where it started to sound like Capleton was remaking his own songs. Now with the release of Country for sale, it sounds like Buju Banton is remaking not one, not two but three of Capleton’s songs.
“Dem sellout the airport, sell out the plane, sell out the bauxite…” were lyrics that Capleton uttered in the song “Sellout a gwaan”. Then in another song called sellout, Capleton sings, about the country was selling out everything from its natural resources to the airports; sounds familiar. Then yet in another song call “Big time sellout”, Capleton chants “Dem sellout wi bauxite, sellout wi water… they all sellout wi Air Jamaica.” So it is fair to say that when it comes to a country for sale, Capleton has already ran that topic into the ground.
In fairness to Buju Banton, he lost his freedom in December of 2019 and Air Jamaica was not sold until 2011, so maybe the artiste just had something he wanted to say about it back then but because of his incarceration he is just now getting the chance to say it. However, when Buju Banton sings that “Air Jamaica sell off, airport Donald Sangster sell off,” it is difficult not to think that Capleton has already discussed that in quite a few songs.
Hopefully the next Buju Banton will actually be something new for the people. Maybe this effort was for reggae fans to get an understanding of what he was doing while in prison. Right now China is flexing its muscles and taking total control of Jamaica, however, the actual selling out of Jamaica is nothing new, just ask Capleton.