Yellowman Tickets for Sale

The rudest Dancehall toaster of the 1980s, Jamaica's albino son Yellowman made as many enemies as fans with his controversial, often overtly sexist (if tongue in cheek) lyrics. Now back on the Ragga scene, singing at a slightly slower pace, Yellowman's witticisms are as cheeky, spirited and intelligent as ever, and delivered with his customary sharp, melodic style.

Yellowman (born Winston Foster in 1956 or 1959) is a Jamaican dub, ragga and dancehall musician. He was extremely popular in Jamaica in the 1980s, coming to prominence with a series of funky, sexy singles that established his reputation. His exaggerated sexual prowess, combined with his long-time social outcast status as an albino (who are denigrated in Jamaica), made Yellowman very popular.

Violent and sexually explicit lyrics earned Yellowman some criticism in the mid-1980s, along with most of the rest of the ragga community. By the mid-1990s, though, Yellowman released socially conscious material, rising to international fame as part of a popularization led by singers like Buju Banton.
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Yellowman was born Winston Foster in Negril, Jamaica, in 1959 (some accounts say 1956). An early target for abuse because of his albinism, he grew up in an institution in Kingston, with little to keep him company besides music. Influenced by early toasting DJs like U-Roy, he practiced rhyming and got a job with the Gemini Sound System as a substitute DJ. Christening himself Yellowman and dressing in a bright yellow suit, he peppered his lyrics with jokes about his skin color and outlandish tales of his sexual conquests. In 1979, he won a landslide victory at the well-known Tastee Talent Contest, and within months he had become one of Jamaica's top concert draws, thanks to a dynamic, humorous stage show in which he often used the microphone to mimic his anatomical gifts.

Yellowman recorded prolifically in the early '80s, at one point flooding the Jamaican market with more than 40 singles. His first full-length album, Them a Mad Over Me, was recorded for Channel One in 1981 and featured the hit title track and the single "Me Kill Barnie," an answer record to Lone Ranger's hit "Barnabas Collins." He also scored with singles like "Operation Eradication" and the infamously slack "Shorties," which Peter Tosh condemned as degrading to women (hardly the first time such a criticism would be leveled at him). Despite this success, Yellowman didn't truly hit his stride on record until he hooked up with groundbreaking dancehall producer Henry "Junjo" Lawes. The 1982 LP Mister Yellowman kicked off their collaboration; released internationally by Greensleeves, it started to break him in the U.K. and U.S., and is still often acclaimed as his best album. It also launched a series of Jamaican hit singles over the next few years that included including "Yellowman Getting Married" (a rewrite of the My Fair Lady number "I'm Getting Married in the Morning"), "Mr. Chin," "Who Can Make the Dance Ram" (a rewrite of "The Candy Man"), "Zungguzungguguzungguzeng" (sampled by several hip-hop acts), "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly," "Soldier Take Over," "Nobody Move Nobody Get Hurt," and "Wreck a Pum Pum," among others. Many of his recordings during this era featured vocal contributions from fellow DJ/toaster Fathead, whose specialty was punctuating lines with animal noises ("ribbit" and "oink" were his favorites).
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