I don't expose artistes for profit - Bounty
Iconic dancehall artiste Bounty Killer has responded to Mr Vegas' advice that was published in the Thursday STAR. Vegas said the self-proclaimed 'Poor People Governor' should have bounded the artistes he exposed to contracts in order to benefit from their success.
Bounty Killer posted his response on The Star's Instagram page. He exposed the artistes because he saw them as friends who needed help, and not because he wanted to gain money from their success. The veteran deejay further stated that signing artistes can be risky business, especially if these artistes do not honour contractual agreements.
While Bounty agreed that signing artistes like Mavado, Vybz Kartel, Busy Signal, Elephant Man, and Cham could have benefited him financially, he said he was not helping those acts because he wanted to profit from their work.
"That's one way to look at it, yes, but I did not help the poor people to benefit or make a profit. I did it out of love and generosity. Making a dollar from a next man's earning means it's a business venture, and I would be helping whoever just to help my pocket," he said.
Bounty Killer said he regards his artistes as friends, and, therefore, does not hold them to the standards of the music business.
"If I had signed my friends, then it would have become straight business and my friendship means more than money," he said.
The artiste also said working with artistes under contract can lead to legal issues which he doesn't want to be concerned with.
"We had signed Scare Dem in 1998 to Wonder Dogg/Scare Dem Productions on TVT Records. The artistes bought scooters with the advance money and never did the album. In 2002, Elephant Man got his big break and had to give Johnny Wonder a piece of his publishing for not doing the album. That would also mean that I would have to take Elephant Man to court or sue him for mine, so I decided from there that I was not going to sign any other friends," Bounty Killer said.
As it relates to Mr Vegas' view that Bounty Killer would have done more for dancehall if he was given more opportunities internationally, the icon went for his rÈsumÈ to prove he was no small fry on the international scene.
"The album, My Experience, sold over 300,000 copies and Hey Baby went number five on the Billboard top 10 chart. I am the first Jamaican artiste to win a MTV Moon Man award, and I got two of them. I am also the only Jamaican artiste to get nominated in two different categories in the Grammys and won one of them," he said.
"I am the only Jamaican artiste to perform at the Super Bowl in 2002. I have been on MTV, BET, VH1, etc. I could not be anymore international because Jamaican culture could not come with me, and I am not leaving my culture.
"My songs sing for Jamaica and black people around the world. I don't reform or conform, and when I perform, my values are different. I am an advocate, not just an artiste."