Apr 22, 2008

Bounty Killer Bottled in Guyana

Gunfire marred the highly publicized Ignition Concert at the National Park early yesterday morning that featured a line-up of Jamaican artistes, among them the controversial Bounty Killa. The Jamaican, who has a record of homophobic tunes and glorifies guns in his music, was the closing act and he held true to form during the brief performance that was interrupted by two audio breakdowns, an unruly crowd and subsequent gunfire.

Jonathan Beepat of Wildfire Productions which promoted the show told Stabroek News yesterday that police fired two warning shots to tame the crowd after Bounty Killa’s performance was twice interrupted by the audio cut-off. This could not be confirmed with the police yesterday. He said those are the only gunshots he was aware of.

But gunshots rang out twice in the Park - a few minutes into Bounty Killa’s act and yet again when the show ended abruptly and patrons scurried to safety. On the second occasion, the gunshots numbered around four. Beepat said he was not aware of the initial gunfire. While Bounty Killa was still onstage during the second audio cut-off angry patrons hurled bottles at him in protest at the limited time he had entertained but the Jamaican was unharmed. The protest eventually got louder and threatened to disrupt the show when the audio was restored.

Though his headlining act was seemingly the reason many poured into the Park, Bounty Killa’s performance was reduced to a vicious campaign against the gay community and a celebration of gun violence. From the moment he stepped on the stage he declared that, “all batty man fe dead”. His onstage manager had cause to warn the singer about his lyrics but he brushed off the caution and kept his message going much to the approval of a large section of the gathering. Prior to Bounty Killa’s appearance a local deejay had called out into the crowd for “bad men from Buxton and Agricola to represent as the Five Star General [Bounty Killa] was about to ignite the concert”.

Beepat in commenting on Bounty Killa’s performance said that his Wildfire Productions camp spoke with the Jamaican on about four occasions about what he had planned for the local show and the issue of his violent messages had come up. He said positive assurances were given then. According to Beepat, Bounty Killa had no regard for this when he took the stage as evidenced by his ignoring the warnings of his manager. The promoter said he chose to bring the singer because of his long hiatus from the local stage. Beepat added that he felt Bounty Killa was in demand due to his absence and decided to bring him. Before Bounty Killa took the stage Jamaican singers, QQ and Wayne Wonder delivered show-stopping performances.

SOURCE:Stabroek News

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