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One of Yellowmans most famous album -  Zungguzungguguzungguzeng - 1983

One of the longest ever titles for a Pop single. It really is. That title belongs to King Yellowman from Jamaica, that title is this - Zungguzungguguzungguzeng. Long isn't it?

I start by saying this. Yellowman, was the next  Superstar to appear from the Islands of Jamaica, directly after the Death of the International Superstar that was Bob Marley in 1981.

It was a monumental achievement to do, and sometimes I still don't know how it just happened, but it did

Well lets start from the beginning. He is known as King Yellowman by thousands of people via his stage name within the music of Reggae; but his real name is simply Winston Foster.

He was born within the city of Kingston, Jamaica in the year of 1956. Winston Foster grew up in a Catholic orphanage called the Alpha Boys school in Kingston, Jamaica. He shunned for most of his young life due to him being an Albino - which was not socially accepted in Jamaica at the time.

Yellowman - The First superstar after the Death of Bob Marley in 1981

Things were to change for the young Foster musically that is. In the late 1970's Foster won a music contest even within Kingston, Jamaica called the "Tastee Talent Contest" where people like himself would or could perform "Toasting"- (Jamaican)

Like many Jamaican artists at the time he got better overtime at the art of "Toasting"; and by taking part at the number of increasing Sound system dances that were becoming more and more popular on the island.

The year of 1981 saw him being signed to an American record label that is CBS records. The first Reggae Dancehall artist to do so such was his popularity.

His first album was called "Mister Yellowman" (1982), and then later on after releasing at least 7 other albums LATER down the line we see him releasing the album in 1983 that is called " Zungguzungguguzungguzeng". Both albums were huge within the island of Jamaica and a legend was born.  I love the album that is - Zungguzungguguzungguzeng. The title track is one of my favourite of mine.

As well as the track that is also on the album and is known as "Who can make Dance Ram?

Yellowman's sexually suggestive lyrics did earn him some criticism by the mid 1980s. Yellowman boasted of his sexual prowess, like of the other Jamaican Dance performers of the time, which didn't go too well with many Women movements across the world.

It was around this time that this style of Reggae gained a nickname known as "Slackness" 

When asked about his lyrics from that period of time his response was

"I never know why they call it slackness. I talk about sex, but it's just what happens behind closed doors. What I talk is reality" - Du Noyer, Paul (2003). The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Music (1st ed.). Fulham, London: Flame Tree Publishing. p. 362.ISBN 1-904041-96-5

 Yellowman has had some influence within the world of Hip Hop music as well during his time within the Music Industry.

He often credited by music critics, some Hip Hop fans and Reggae fans of allowing other artists gain acceptance within the American music market; especially within the Hip-Hop music industry during the 1980's

Yellowmans - Nobody Move, Nobody gets Hurt - 1993

For Instance Easy-E used a sample of Yellowmans "Nobody move, Nobody get hurt" 1983 track within his own single called "Nobody move, Nobody gets hurt" featuring Biggie Smalls - 1995

The Rhythm of the song called "Zungguzungguguzungguzeng" has also been heavily used within the Hip-Hop community over the years by artists such as KRS ONE, TUPAC SHAKAR, BIGGIE SMALLS AND BLACKSTAR.

The rhythm used by Yellowman within the song that is called "Zungguzungguguzungguzeng" is known to us as the "Diseases" riddim by "Junjo" Lawes, has been sampled and imitated repeatedly since its original release in 1967. 

However, this rhythm has little to do with Yellowmans talent. Yellowmans real talent comes from his ability to ride the rhythm like no other at this period of time.

The Lyrics seem to come out of his head to his mouth without thinking about it over live appearances or live performances.

From the early to the middle 1980;s his was the King of Dancehall Reggae music.

When Bob Marley did in 1981, many people across the world thought that Reggae music was dead.

However, he took the problem by the root and took it to another level, via taking this new vibe of Reggae music to New York areas of America; and to cities within England such as London, Birmingham and Manchester.

Yellowman was diagnosed with Skin Cancer during the year of 1982 and was told that he only 3 years to live. However, this proved to be wrong as further test showed that he had overcome the disease after a series of surgeries.

However, one again came to the forehead again, it was confirmed that Cancer had returned but this time it had spread to his jaw. The surgery performed to remove Cancer from that area disfigured his face as a large part of the lower left hand side had to be removed  to remove the tumour.

By the 1990's Yellowman had moved on and tried to distance himself from the "slackness" culture/vibe that he was renowned for in Reggae music to a more conscious musical style of Reggae music. For instance in 1994 he released the album called "Prayer". In 2003, he released the album called "New York" and in 2005, he released the album called "Round 1".

To this day Yellowman still manages to perform all around the world with his band called "Sagittarius" to countries such as Australia, England,  Spain, Peru, Sweden, Italy, Germany,  Usa, France and Kenya.

Yellowman and his band Sagittarius - Playing at another venue

One of his most famous tracks - "Nobody moves, Nobody gets hurt" is used within the game called Grand theft Auto V via the fictious station known as Blue Ark Fm 

Just another Musical legend that comes from the island that is Jamaica that continues to "Punch above its weight" 

Well that all folks for me now anyway.

Please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. me here. If you want to discuss anything mentioned here in this article.

Dj Mistri and the Electric Soul Show © www.electricsoulshow.com