Sep 30, 2006

Buju "Too Bad" for Gay Groups

Buju Banton used two words to describe this view of the gay rights groups that have been protesting his Too Bad Tour across the U.S.: "Fuck them." Buju Banton told "I have never bashed any gays before, and if I bashed gays, I bashed them 16 years ago,". "There's no tolerance from the gay community. I'm not a gay-basher. I'm not a homophobe." Buju Banton, has been plagued by protests since 1992 after recording his controversial 1992 song "Boom Bye Bye" which gay rights group view as preaching violence against homosexuals. More recently in 2004, when he was accused of taking part in an attack on gay men in Kingston, Jamaica. Despite being cleared of all charges in January 2004, Banton has seen several of his scheduled performances cancelled while trying to promote his new album, "Too Bad." Concerts in both Los Angeles and San Francisco were cancelled this month, and another in Boulder, Colorado was protested, but still went on. Banton is defiant, insisting that despite his acquittal, gay rights groups refuse to let him move on with his life. In most cities, he says, there are no protests. The media, he insists, is making too much out of a handful of protestors' actions. Despite the controversy, Banton has pressed on with "Too Bad," which marks his return to dancehall reggae after recent roots reggae discs. "This collection of music is about reaching into the dancehall time and to a place where the music was so enjoyable. It [has] so [many] different themes; references to life and music and all that great stuff," he says. "It's 360 degrees, so to speak." "Too Bad" is also Banton's first release on his own Gargamel label.

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