Kenya: Why Buju Banton Won't Perform Mega-Hit 'Boom Bye Bye' in Kenya

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Beat, music
25 December 2019

Jamaican reggae and dancehall icon Buju Banton who is scheduled to thrill his fans in Kenya on February 8, 2020 in Nairobi will not perform one of his mega-hits Boom Bye Bye.

The song, which was Buju Banton's breakout hit, elicited mixed reactions and criticism for openly advocating for the killing of the gay people.

Upon its release in the early 1990s, the jam became a huge hit but received condemnation in equal measure across the world, including in his home country Jamaica.

Buju Banton reportedly wrote the lyrics of the song when he was 15 years old.

Reports further indicate that the song was about a pedophile who was caught molesting young boys in Buju Banton's neighborhood in Jamaica.

So controversial was the song that it led into the birth of a movement by the name Stop Murder Music Campaign in the UK.

The situation got worse as it led to the cancellation of approximately 28 of Buju Banton concerts across the world.

This led to Buju Banton revoking the anti-gay song and removing it completely from his catalog and vowing never to perform again.

He has never performed the song since 2007.


However, upon his release from prison last year after 7 years, there has been a great deal of press coverage about the song in his country.

Sometime this year, Buju Banton decided to speak out once again about the track, showing remorse to the many who were hurt as he maintained the song still stand banned.

"In recent days there has been a great deal of press coverage about the song Boom Bye Bye from my past which I long stopped performing and removed from any platform I control or have influence over. I recognize that the song has caused much pain to listeners as well as to my fans, my family and myself," Buju Banton told Urban Islandz in March this year.

"After all the adversity we've been through I am determined to put this song in the past. I affirm once and for all that everyone has the right to live as they so choose," he further said.

This year the song was removed from popular streaming platforms like Spotify, Tidal and Apple Music. Buju Banton also deleted the video of the song which reached nearly 30 million views on his YouTube channel.

Even though the song may have brought Buju Banton public fanfare, his other tracks like Action, Untold Stories among many others have solidified his legacy.

Since his release from American prison after serving a seven-year jail term on drug charges and illegal possession of firearms, Buju Banton has been on endless travels around the world for performances.

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