Buju Banton's win at the Grammy Awards on Sunday has gone down extremely well with his fellow music industry practitioners here at home.
The deejay, who is currently facing drug charges in a US court, was showered with congratulatory messages following the announcement that his project, Before the Dawn, was named Best Reggae Album.
In a release, the deejay -- born Mark Myrie -- is quoted as saying: "Winning this Grammy is an honour because it truly shows that my music has transcended a lot of borders and people are now paying attention to what I'm saying, in-depth."
"Music is an art form that cannot be denied by any living soul. Music is life. Many thanks to the Recording Academy for recognising my work," he continues.
Former manager/producer and long-time friend and confidant Donovan Germain could not contain his joy for his prodigy. "It was long overdue, better late than never. He should have won a Grammy from Til Shiloh. I am hoping for the best with his trial and I hope everything works out well for him. I have him in my prayers," Germain said.
Culture minister Olivia 'Babsy' Grange in her message of congratulations to the artiste, noted that she shares the pride and joy of Buju Banton and all his fans across the world . "This is a very important award that recognises his music talent. Buju has produced great music over the years and the album Before the Dawn adds to his collection of outstanding works that has helped to bring Jamaica's Reggae music to the peoples of the world," Minister Grange adds.
"Justified," that is how Headline Entertainment's Jerome Hamilton describes Buju's win. Hamilton continues: "Even if it is not for this album, which is a good product, but for volume of his work over the years and his contribution to reggae. Buju has reached a benchmark as a deejay with his sustained international success and recognition such as this is truly long overdue," he said.
US-based Jamaican broadcast journalist Clinton Lindsay also added his comments to the news of Buju's win, noting that he was not surprised based on the other nominees in the Best Reggae Album category. "Like many others, I am not at all happy with the way the nomination was done. But once the final five nominees were announced, it was clear to me that Buju Banton's Before the Dawn was the best of the lot. From that moment I have been predicting it would win. During my interview with him for his concert January 16, I also told him he would win. As of early Sunday afternoon I posted my prediction on Facebook. Congratulations Buju and good luck in proving your innocence," Lindsay said.
UWI lecturer, Dr Donna Hope Marquis sees the Buju win as a plus for Jamaican popular music. "I was hoping and praying that Buju would get this year's Reggae Grammy Award and am really delighted at this, his first-ever Grammy Award after so many years of excellent music. It is another positive step forward for Jamaican popular music generally and it is a most important milestone for Buju Banton, especially with his ongoing trial in the USA. I really believe that this Grammy Award is a signal that Buju is on the last mile of the road and will be home soon. It is a silver lining in a very dark cloud, just Before the Dawn," she concluded.