I was a loose canon when I was a child; always giving everyone headache and making their lives miserable.  Nothing seemed to work, a thorough beating, threats, nothing, all they did was shake me for a minute or two and then I would be back to my usual rude self; oh, by the way, I was about 7 or 8 years old.  I learnt however, that I was not the first to be, what my mother usually referred to as, a ‘leggo beast’ (a let go beast), – think about a wild bull roaming freely – because she had a cousin of mine give me a pep talk about where I would end up if I continued to be rude.  Now in my defence, my behaviour was typical of a child my age, not staying in the yard, fighting, going to the river, going to shoot birds, not taking care of the goats, the works, so imagine my surprise when I had a motivational talk from my cousin.  The irony of all this is that the motivational speaker was just released from a juvenile facility and I guess my mother was just scared that that was where I was headed if I continued on my current path.  My motivational talk came in the form of stories of what happened at juvenile halls; some scary incidents.  After hearing this, I decided that I needed to behave but then again, time cures all and obviously it got the better of my developed phobia for juvenile halls because I was back to my usual self in a week, so much for the effectiveness of the pep talk.  My mother is a very dedicated lady, therefore, if she decides that she is going to get me to behave she was going to go all out.  The final straw for me came when she packed all my clothes and said she is going to take me to the nearest juvenile centre.  To cut a long story short, I decided to step outside of my comfort and just be a good child.

The tactics and the strategy used by my mother may be effective to other parents but some really do not have the time to be going full force to see that a child keeps within the lines that they have outlined when they are busy working to make ends meet and to put food on the table.  In a situation as this, pressure reaches the unmolded minds and they are easily swayed by individuals that they consider their role models; some of whom are jail bugs waiting to be caught.  When I would go to spend holiday with Pops, I would get the chance to chat with the neighbours in my age group and the things I would hear  would have me wondering if all this ‘excitement’ was missing me because I lived in the ‘country’ (rural part of the country).  The stories that I usually loved listening to are those that told of incidents of ‘badmanism ‘ or ‘badmanship’ because they made my imagination even more creative just try to play out what I was told.  Though the stories were intriguing, I had an issue, the current statement of ‘mi wi kill yuh and go prison’ (I will kill you and go to prison) was used too many times.   This emotionless verbal nuance worried me, not because of the fact that my neighbours (who were also childhood friends) were going to kill anyone, but the fact that they had to have heard such a statement from someone who they were constantly around.  Who, I did not know at that time, but I was worried that that person was in my environment and with such thoughts I didn’t want to be around them.

Many Jamaican males harbour such a thought; preaching that they are ‘bad’ and they will harm anyone who ‘stepped’ to them without fear of the consequences because they are not afraid of going to prison.  Now if they had someone to tell them of the ordeals faced when in prison as I had my cousin tell me about juvenile hall, I doubt they would utter those words with such confidence.  Anyone who has been to prison will tell you that unless you ‘run’ prison then your life will be in shambles after the first few weeks because you have nowhere to go or no one to turn to when issues start to arise.  In addition, there is no freedom, what little you are allowed is too meager to mention.  Freedom can be placed on a scale, however, in prison, that scale becomes irrelevant, most of your freedom goes right through the rails.  In essence, your life is not yours, you are told what to do and when to do it.  These individuals are not informed as such and as a result, in their minds, they think they will simply go and serve their time behind a tall wall where all they will do is build muscles, read a lot and then return to society to pick up where they left off.  They need to be told the grueling truth that what they have in their heads is simply a movie; they need to be told that in prison you become a beast (not always something negative) or a bitch.

Jamaican society is being plagued by these ignorant individuals who are misinformed and have quite a few misnomers about correctional facilities.  Give them the unrefined truth and maybe they would think twice before becoming a menace to society.  Many of the Jamaican artistes who were incarcerated have done songs about their account behind those walls but I think they need to be a bit more vivid in their lyrical content.  Let their lyrics be the window that these ‘thugs’ look through to see what goes on inside these facilities.  Jah Cure said prison a no bed a rose, di livity it makes me bawl, who am I not to believe. My parents and my grandparents always tell me ‘if fish come from river bottom and tell you seh shark dung deh, believe.  So if persons who have been to prison give their account of what goes on the inside as being nothing near fun, who am I not to believe?

I urge these artistes to just relate the unedited version, through songs, of what happens in prison, they are being heard; maybe the gross details will result in a moment of ‘halt for thought’.  They are quite descriptive in all else, whether a sexual escapade or a gun running, why censor now?  Better yet, Mr. Government, what is the latest on CP?

Mama

Baby Wayne

Giggy Riddim

INTRO

Bwoi mi a tell a man, who can’t hear will feel

Bout unu a badman and gunman

And when time unu go a Half-Way-Tree court

Mi si unu a baal fi unu madda an unu faada

A tell dem bout fi get money fi pay lawyer

Big tings tek unu man

A Baby Wayne pan di case, straight up man

Unu hear mi now people, laaaaaaaaad

CHORUS

Bout dem haunted, kill man and get wanted

Yu tink mi response fi dem an no lawyer business

Yu haunted, kill man and get wanted

Mi no response fi yu an courthouse business

 

VERSE 1

Mamaaa yu murderer a cry

A bare teardrops and water come outa him eye

Mamaaa yu murderer a bawl

Him deh a courthouse and hear him name call

Mamaa him all a sweat ina him pants

When him hear di judge seh, give him a life sentence

Mamaa, yu shuda so (see + how) him galang

When di judge try di case an seh dat him fi hang

CHORUS

Bout dem haunted, kill man and get wanted

Yu tink mi response fi dem an no lawyer business

Yu haunted, kill man and get wanted

Mi no response fi yu an courthouse business

VERSE 2

Yu madda warn yu

Before certain tings gwaan

Gi yu a pick axe, a file and a machete fi go farm

Yu neva did waa dat

Bout yu waa live big

A bare gun yu waa sling like yu a Two Gun Kid

Well watch him everyday no stop programme wicked

Wid him gun pan him finger have it a spin like a gig

Di last bwoy try a ting, a three piece rapid

Police round him up and rope him up like pig

And in front di judge him start cry like olive

Mamaa come check mi regular

Bring mi toothpaste, mi soap and no lef mi dinner

Mamaa come check mi regular

Bring mi pants and mi shirt and mi marina

Mamaa come check mi regular

And bring piece a sponge mek me make a pillow

Mamaa try tek mi out yah

Kaa bad bwoy have mi dung yah a spin propeller

CHORUS

Bout dem haunted, kill man and get wanted

Yu tink mi response fi dem an no lawyer business

Yu haunted, kill man and get wanted

Mi no response fi yu an courthouse business

VERSE 3

Yu madda warn yu

Before yu tun badman

Before yu pick up the 16 and or M1

But yu no waa dat, waa tun notorious man

Waa walk up and dung like dem great Sanda Kahn

Judge (to sport or wear frequently) di 16 and judge di M1

Walk up and dung, shot innocent man

Police run yu dung and handcuff pan hand

Hear di bwoy a baal when him reach a station

Repeat VERSE 1

Mamaaa big murderer a cry

A bare teardrops and water come outa him eye

Mamaaa yu murderer a bawl

Him deh a courthouse and hear him name call

Mamaa him all a sweat ina him pants

When him hear di judge seh, give him a life sentence

Mamaa, yu shuda so (see + how) him galang

When di judge try di case an seh dat him fi hang

CHORUS

Bout dem haunted, kill man and get wanted

Yu tink mi response fi dem an no lawyer business

Yu haunted, kill man and get wanted

Mi no response fi yu an courthouse business

 

Repeat VERSE 2

Mi did a warn yu

Before certain tings gwaan

Gi yu a pick axe, a file and a machete fi go farm

Yu neva did waa dat

Bout yu waa live big

A bare gun yu waa sling like yu a Two Gun Kid

Well watch him everyday no stop programme wicked

Wid him gun pan him finger have it a spin like a gig

Di last bwoy try a ting, a three piece rapid

Police round him up and rope him up like pig

And in front di judge him start cry like olive

Mamaa come check mi regular

Bring mi toothpaste, mi soap and no lef mi dinner

Mamaa come check mi regular

Bring mi pants and mi shirt and mi marina

Mamaa come check mi regular

And bring piece a sponge mek me make a pillow

Mamaa try tek mi out yah

Kaa bad bwoy have mi dung yah a spin propeller

Song fades

True Reflections (Prison Walls)

By Jah Cure

INTRO

Mmmmmmmhmmm yeaah

Dadadadadaadadai

Dadadadaadadai

Mmmhmm

VERSE 1

Behind these prison walls

Doing my paces, doing my time, ooohh yeah

Spending my restless nights visioning faces

Oh they all cry, cryyyyyyyyyy

CHORUS

Prison a no bed a roses

Di livity, it makes mi bawl

A wish dat Jah could come and take us back in time

Cause I swear, I can be a better man

Yes I swear, if only you could understand

The faith in me shall set me free
Reflections (reflections)
The faith in me shall set me free reflections

VERSE 2

Dadadadadaadadai

Behind these metal bars
To Jah Jah i’m chanting
Pray for your love divine
I’m oh so sorry a man
Deeply I’m hurting
The price ordained to be mine
Impossible to see the changes
That I’ve made in ma life
All they see is just the boy they left behind

CHORUS

And I swear, I can be a better man

Yes I swear, if only you could understand

The faith in me shall set me free
Reflections (reflections)
The faith in me shall set me free reflections
Dadadadadadadi

BRIDGE
Don’t judge me wrong
Cause now I’m stonger
Than I was before
I was young and unwise
Didn’t you hear my cry

Impossible to see the changes
That I’ve made in ma life
All they see is just the boy I left behind

CHORUS

Cause I swear, I can be a better man

Cause I swear, if only you could understand

Cause I swear, I can be a better man

And I swear, I swearrrrrrrrrrrrrr (if only you could understand)

The faith in me shall set me free
Reflections (reflections)
The faith in me shall set me free reflections

The faith in me shall set me free reflections

(Song fades)

 

Back to Life

Vybz Kartel

INTRO

Woooooooooooowoooooowooowooooo

Ah aaaah, ah aaaaah

Steady are you ready

Yow fatal (back to life) mi waah go (back to reality)

(back to life) mi mi waah go (back to reality)

VERSE 1

Listen, yu kyaah get pum pum a prison

A next man have yu gyal when yu misn

Stay far from war dat a copper and lead

Yu kyaah get head when yu dead

Di food a shit di bed a concrete

Sunday Gleaner a mi damn sheet

Yu kyaah sleep dead mi a warn yu

A pare roach and rat a crawl paah yu

When di cage lock yu haffi thug it up

Ina dem place yah dutty like rubbish truck

Mi just a pree back, happy days, memories

Weh mi kids, weh mi wife, weh mi benz is

Dem place yah mek yu know who yu frenz is

Mek yu know di real gyal dem from the enzesif yu a

If yu a punk, if yu naav no defences

Bad man jailer beat out yu senses

Di lectric fences and di tall wall

Regular mi si man sidung and staat bawl

Society, de so near but yu kyaa go

Every day so mi just se mi waa go

CHORUS

 Mi waa go (back to life) mi waa go (back to reality)

Mi waa go (back to life) mi mi waa go (back to reality)

VERSE 2

Listen, yu kyaah get pum pum a prison

A next man have yu gyal when yu misn

Stay far from war dat a copper and lead

Yu kyaah get head when yu…..

Lock dung fi 23 hour

1 hour split up ina 2 half hour

15 fi food and 15 fi shower

Couple hour later the next 30 minute is

15 fi wash dutty clothes if yu got none

15 fi look smokings fi go lock dung
Real thugs no back dung

Ina dem place if yu get a jam, a stab, di medical a wait fi yu

Di victims surrender

Warder fuck up di offender so who a di real winner

Long time mi doh eat a real dinner

Meal ina fuck up so mi smuggle some rum through di steel window

Just fi get mi appetite happy right yu know

Prison have a code but zip not yu code

Like Movado mi waa do road

Society let mi out back pan yu road

 

CHORUS

 Mi waa go (back to life) mi waa go (back to reality)

(back to life) mi mi waa go (back to reality)

Song fades

Nah Go a Jail Again

Busy Signal

 

INTRO

Free up, busy, from captivity, sound it
All who cut off the f**king bracelet,  watch it
All who fled from the leash, refugee

Jump bail
Busy!

CHORUS

Seh wi nah go a jail again, oh no
And wi never going fail again, oh no
Like a ship wi ago sail again, oh oh
You wuda never si mi call mi friend fi bail again
Naa see mi a court house no more, oh no
No bracelet up ina house no more, oh no
Mi step out and hold mi own fi sure, oh oh
Real hustlers a road a mek money galore

VERSE 1

Ey, so mi seh if yu ever been to jail before
Yu hafi keep a yaiy open even if you snore
Wah mount a cardboard, some man a beat it pon di floor
Tired fi mark X and hear the steel doors a roar, plus di warder dem
If you ever been behind the bars
Although some innocent dem have fi live with the scars
You kyaa snitch cause any day you come a road a war
You kyaa weak kaa man wi dip in a you cookie jar

CHORUS
Seh wi nah go a jail again, oh no
And wi never going fail again, oh no
Like a ship wi ago sail again, oh oh
You would a never see mi call mi friend fi bail again
Nah see mi a court house no more,  oh no
No bracelet up ina house no more, oh no
Mi step out and hold mi own fi sure, oh oh
Real hustlers a road a mek money galore

VERSE 2

Ina jail mi seh thugs deh pon dah side yah and the snitch deh pan di ada
Kyaa diss nuh man weh a do life in a dem yard yah
Get beatn from the warder, if you go round di order

Yu kyaa drop no soap pon di border like shebada
Kyaa, have a next man a plait yu hair
Kyaa,  have a next man a spot yu rear
Kyaa,  have so much money and food pon you commissary
And a gwaan like you naa share.

CHORUS
Seh wi nah go a jail again, oh no
And wi never going fail again, oh no
Like a ship wi ago sail again, oh oh
You would a never see mi call mi friend fi bail again
Nah see mi a court house no more,  oh no
No bracelet up ina house no more, oh no
Mi step out and hold mi own fi sure, oh oh
Real hustlers a road a mek money galore

Repeat VERSE 1

Ey, so mi seh if yu ever been to jail before
Yu hafi keep a yaiy open even if you snore
Wah mount a cardboard, some man a beat it pon di floor
Tired fi mark X and hear the steel doors a roar, plus di warder dem
If you ever been behind the bars
Although some innocent dem have fi live with the scars
You kyaa snitch cause any day you come a road a war
You kyaa weak kaa man wi dip in a you cookie jar

CHORUS
Seh wi nah go a jail again, oh no
And wi never going fail again, oh no
Like a ship wi ago sail again, oh oh
You would a never see mi call mi friend fi bail again
Nah see mi a court house no more,  oh no
No bracelet up ina house no more, oh no
Mi step out and hold mi own fi sure, oh oh
Real hustlers a road a mek money galore

VERSE 2

Ina jail mi seh thugs deh pon dah side yah and the snitch deh pan di ada
Kyaa diss nuh man weh a do life in a dem yard yah
Get beatn from the warder, if you go round di order

Yu kyaa drop no soap pon di border like shebada
Kyaa, have a next man a plait yu hair
Kyaa,  have a next man a spot yu rear
Kyaa,  have so much money and food pon you commissary
And a gwaan like you naa share.

If yu ever, ever, ever been through what a been through

Haffi pay yu dues, pay yu dues

Haffi make yu moves, make yu moves

Haffi gwaan listen to the signal tunes

Sound it, so mi seh  Taz, Puggy, Jam few, Kamar

Ey, dem know wi working

Meanwhile their companions slept

Jesus wept, busy, sound it, kyaa go round it

Sickly

Song ends

Di Gorgon is Back

Ninja Man ft. Kiprich

INTRO (Ninja Man)

Well a deh a Horizon and a watch mi son a muder dem uppa Jam World

Dons of all dons Don Gorgon, Kiprich from right hand, real bad man

Defend war all when wi ina tribulation, pinamina one

Di gorgon is back, back, back back

Di gorgon is back

Di gorgon is back

Di gorgon is back

Dons of  all dons Don Gorgon

VERSE 1

Kiprich

Done di road now, di grill fly

Fi violate it no easy fi try

Gorgon hear mi a tell yu, when yu deh a jail di fraternity cry

Ninja Man

Time and time again I’ve been warning some idiot

Seh a one gorgon ina di world everybody can see dat
Mi no si no bwoy outa road or jail weh fi box mi

If unu waa know how di story go den unu aks mi

Kiprich a tell di whole a dem seh

CHORUS (Kiprich)

Jail no mek fi no puss nor dog

Big up di jailers a foreign and yard

Wah gwaan a road dat kyaa gwaan a jail

A di longest liver tell the tale behind di rail

Jail no mek fi no puss nor dog

Big up di jailers a foreign and yard

Wah gwaan a road dat kyaa gwaan a jail

A di longest liver tell the tale

VERSE 2

Ninja Man

Unu hear yah now

Ina jail yu haffi tink straight

Yu haffi hold yu corner sidung and meditate

Reminisce pan yu gyal but haffi hold yu faith

For no warder nah let no woman through di gate

Kiprich

Outta road nice when yu free like a bird

Get gyal everyday as we seh di word

So any man deh outta road and naah no woman

Dat haffi be a punk, dat nerd

Ninja Man

Yes ina jail badman no talk nuff

Di cash it come iin fi mi canteen stuff

And if a bwoy join di cell and naah gwaan well

Him chest a get a million puff

Kiprich

Di ongl ting yu miss Gorgon a freedom

From yu deh a jail no money naah run

Brown man rub di country and step dung

Promise free education, kids no get none

CHORUS (Kiprich)

Watch mi no

Jail no mek fi no puss nor dog

Big up di jailers a foreign and yard

Wah gwaan a road dat kyaa gwaan a jail

A di longest liver tell the tale behind di rail

Jail no mek fi no puss nor dog

Big up di jailers a foreign and yard

Wah gwaan a road dat kyaa gwaan a jail

A di longest liver tell the tale

VERSE 3

Kiprich

To how jail a run now yu haffi pay tax

Yu kyaa buy no hot car again fi relax

Cause dem put GCT pan one stayfree and baby chemise and socks

Ninja Man

Mi de pan mi block and see Kartel come iin

Seh dem find evidence pan two murder scene

Mi tell him no fret kaa chuu a gyal a fi frame artiste chu wi a walking money machine

Kiprich

Jah know the street miss Vybz Kartel

Him deh a jail but still a gwaan well

But a just one ting though the shop people dem a seh from him gone cake soap naah sell

 

 

CHORUS (Kiprich)

Watch mi no

Jail no mek fi no puss nor dog

Big up di jailers a foreign and yard

Wah gwaan a road dat kyaa gwaan a jail

A di longest liver tell the tale behind di rail

Jail no mek fi no puss nor dog

Big up di jailers a foreign and yard

Wah gwaan a road dat kyaa gwaan a jail

A di longest liver tell the tale

Song ends

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