Sean Paul was formally recognized by the Jamaican Government for his contribution to global entertainment on the country’s National Heroes Day (Oct. 21).
The Grammy-winning entertainer, whose given name is Sean Henriques, received the Order of Distinction in the Rank of Commander for for his contribution to the global popularity and promotion of Reggae music.
“I am grateful for the recognition. all I want to do is continue to play my part in helping our culture to continue to dominate the airwaves all around the world,” Sean Paul told the Jamaica Star.
Sean Paul has been credited for helping to crossover Jamaica’s Dancehall and Reggae genres to international markets like pop and Latin, where they had very little presence before.
The “Gimme the Light” singer joined an elite list of music producers and musicians who have made first-rate contributions to the development of various genres of Jamaican music. He has been making tsunami-like moves in the Dancehall sector for more than two decades and has now underscored the importance of honoring deserving individuals while they are alive and well.
“As humans, we tend to spend more time on the negative, so when things like this are shown priority it is always a great thing. It helps to encourage those who we live with and among, it helps to inspire and motivate us,” he stated.
Sean Paul managed to successfully crossover to the US music market, with six studio albums and three US number-one singles, “Get Busy”, “Temperature” and “Baby Boy,” which was a collaboration with Beyonce.
Sean Paul’s second studio album “Dutty Rock” earned him the Reggae Album of the Year at the 46th Annual Grammy Awards in 2004. He has also won a slew of other awards including American Music Awards, MOBO Awards, International Reggae and World Music Awards and Soul Train Awards. The Jamaican entertainer has collaborated with Beyonce, Nicki Minaj, Sia, Damian Marley, Keyshia Cole, Becky G, Eve, Estelle, Pretty Ricky, among others.
Sean Paul continues to be in demand, with singer Idris Elba, UK rappers Wiley and Stefflon Don among his collaborations this year.
Among the other honorees this year are Rita Marley, Julius Garvey, son of Marcus Garvey, politicians Mike Henry, Robert ‘Bobby’ Pickersgill, and Dr Horace Chang.
The Order of Distinction is given citizens of Jamaica who have rendered outstanding and important services to Jamaica. Past awardees include athletes Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, journalist Ian Boyne, musicians Shaggy, Gregory Isaacs, and Marcia Griffith.