Could ‘Mr Lover Lover’ bring peace to the Middle East?
In an interview the Miami Times, reggae star Shaggy said his music, including tracks such as ‘Boombastic’ and ‘It Wasn’t Me’, is so emotional that Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) would immediately stop carrying out their brutal beheadings if only the songs were pumped into jihadi strongholds.
The 46-year-old Jamaican – who actually served as a US marine in Iraq during the first Gulf War – suggested that Western armies should find a way to pipe his music into ISIS terror camps as a way to inject some emotion into the terror group’s dead-eyed killers.
Shaggy went as far to say that if ISIS recruits were to listen his latest single, the pleasantly-titled “Go F*ck Yourself”, they would turn away from terrorism altogether and embrace peace.
Shaggy, whose real name is Orville Burrell, described himself as resolutely anti-evil and said his career of 24 years has been all about spreading peace and love around the world.
During a promotional interview with the Miami New Times, Shaggy was asked if the profanity-heavy title of his new single was aimed at anybody in particular.
“ISIS can go f**k themselves. That’s some crazy shit what they’re doing. It’s horrible, man. I can’t see… I don’t get that much hate. I just don’t get that level of evil. I can’t understand it,” he said.
The 90s star suggested that one peaceful solution to the threat posed by ISIS is that his music could be pumped in ISIS strongholds and training camps to spread positive feeling among the terrorists.
“If you’re able to cut a man’s head off, you’re sick. But right music evokes emotion. So if they’re listening to Shaggy music or reggae music, they’re not going to want to cut somebody’s head off,” he said.
“There’re two thing you want to do when you listen to reggae: You get somebody pregnant, or you’re f**king high. High people don’t want to kill nothing; they want to love. They need to bag some Jamaican weed and distribute it amongst ISIS. I guarantee there won’t be any more wars out there.”
Shaggy found fame in the mid-1990s with his blend of reggae, hip hop and pop and a unique voice that inspired thousands of playground imitators.
Born in Kingston, Jamaica, Shaggy’s family moved to the Flatbush area of Brooklyn in New York aged 18, where he started singing and performing alongside friends.
He put his music career on temporary hold, however, to enlist as a Marine during the first Gulf War, serving with the firing battery from the 10th Marine Regiment in Iraq.
While serving in the army, Shaggy perfected his unique vocal style and wrote the song that would eventually become a hit single around the world, “Boombastic”.
His first big success was a cover of the Folkes Brothers’ ‘Oh, Carolina’, however, which hit number one in the UK in 1993.
“Boombastic” was the next big success two years later, reaching number one around the world after it was featured on a television advertisement for Levi jeans.
The album of the same name won a Grammy award the following year.
After a few years without a major hit, Shaggy returned alongside Jamaican singer RikRok on the smash hit single ‘It Wasn’t Me’ in 2000, which again was an international number one.
The follow-up ‘Angel’ also fared well in the charts but Shaggy has struggled with mainstream success since the early 2000s.