Most Dancehall fans believe that it is Vybz Kartel who should have received the honor of being the most influential deejay and they are correct. Kartel does have more influence on dancehall fans, especially the younger ones and we can see this as Jamaica’s morality continue to decay.
Sadly, there is a strong correlation between Vybz Kartel’s influence and the sad state that Jamaica finds itself in. In the song Destiny, Buju Banton said: “There was good and evil, we chose good”; in the case of dancehall, however, most fans chose evil.
Dancehall fans had the choice to be influenced by artistes who uplift Blackness in much the same way that Marcus Garvey did but instead they chose an artistes that led the island into mass skin bleaching. Fans had the choice to be influenced by artistes who not only sung of peace and love but they also practiced it, instead they chose to be influenced by a convicted murderer.
JaRIA had the right intention when they honored Bounty Killer as the most influential but they were very wrong in their selection. If Bounty Killer was the most influential deejay of all time, Jamaica would be in a much better state and the dancehall would not have been degraded like it is today.
Below is the 18 Karat Reggae poll on who is the most influential dancehall artiste of all time, please vote and let your voice be heard.