Guyanese ban on Jamaican Star Mavado lifted


Stabroek News reports that the Guyanese government is allowing Jamaican musician Mavado to perform at the National Stadium in Providence, Guyana, on September 19. The ban is being lifted exactly one year and five months after Mavado was blacklisted after previous concerts in Guyana lad led to violence.

Mavado (the stage name of David Constantine Brooks, who is also known as “Gully God”) first performed in Guyana on February 23, 2006, at the Georgetown Football Club (GFC) Ground. He had been expected to perform at the 2008 Linden Town Week Celebration, in a show that was hosted by Ward Entertainment at the Mackenzie Sports Club ground and also featured Lady Saw. At a press conference held on the April 28 last year, however, Home Affairs Minister Clement Rohee had told reporters that Mavado and his mentor and leader of the Alliance crew Rodney ‘Bounty Killer’ Price were seen as a security risk to the country and as such would not be permitted to perform. The ban responded to reports that two weeks earlier Bounty Killer’s show at the National Park had been marred by sporadic gunfire. Last year, Mavado faced bans in other Caribbean territories as well. Last February, in Trinidad and Tobago, his music–whose trademark and latest album title is ‘Gangsta for Life’ – was blamed for the stabbing of a student and as a result of this, some DJs on the island have reportedly refused to play his music. He was also stopped from entering St Vincent and Grenadines just days before a scheduled performance. In June of last year he was charged with illegal gun possession and as a result was denied a U.S. visa for a call-up on stage by American hip-hop star Jay-Z, who has done a remix of his song “On the Rock.” None of these troubles kept him from signing a multi-million dollar contract with the makers for the popular video game Grand Theft Auto, where he had his hit tune “Real Mckoy” specially redone for the game. In addition, he was commissioned by Nike to appear in an EPK (Electronic Promotional Kit) and to make an original track to support the Jamaican efforts at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Nike also made a limited number of ‘Mavado Nike’ sneakers to help promote the campaign.

In Guyana, reactions to the lifting of the ban have been mixed.

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