Fantan Mojah stans firm in the midst of criticism over his “Fire King” video and refuses to apologize to Mutabaruka.
Since Fantan Mojah released his raunchy video for his latest track, “Fire King,” he has come under heavy criticism from several veterans in the genre. One veteran poet, Mutabaruka, has been very vocal with his critique, and the back and forth has caused a rift between the two. Mojah has since apologized to the Marley family, who also raised concerns but has publicly said he refuses to apologize to Mutabaruka. He stood by his comments while being interviewed recently on On Stage with Winford Williams.
“Muta have to aplogise to me first. Me never dis you, you dis me,” he said. With a pained voice, he added that the poet’s comments had traumatized his children, who are big fans. He added that he also listens to Mutabruka’s program on Irie FM.
“Fe years me is a fan of Muta, me woulda never ever, try fe say something bad fe hurt Muta’s feelings because we look up to Muta.” Mojah said that he felt slighted by the poet’s actions and that he is not afraid of any defamation lawsuit as he intends to sue first if it comes to that. “If ah sue yuh go me go back ah sue you to,” he added. He apologized to Cindy Breakspeare but said he has no interest in apologizing to Mutabaruka.
Mojah stands by his song and the video, and he made that clear. In fact, he said that his fans know that he did nothing wrong because it’s just music and “religion nah inna music.” He added that he had been true to the culture and had recorded many songs about consciousness, and he is quite surprised at how heavily he is being criticized for dropping “one dancehall song.” He coined a term for his critics, calling them “reggae police” as he questioned where the outcry was for other artistes doing worse.
He maintained that he is fully committed to Rastafarianism and does not see a connection between his video and his faith. “Winford, yuh nuh si mi a turban man. Wi a Rasta, by law an by birth,” he said. On the issue of the skimpy clothing of the women in the video, he said that it was okay for Rastafarians to represent themselves as clean and that clothing was just another construct created by society.
“Look pon it dis way. Rasta must clean. Yuh mus have on nice clothes… good clothes an nice tings. Rasta mus look good. Suh who a try dis stuck up ting and dis one bag a cloth ting, mi nuh inna it Winford. Mi nuh inna it wid dem enuh,” he said.
The “Most High Jah” singer said he served his majesty (King Haile Selassie) and Emannuel and so he would not let his detractors bring him down.
“Listen yuh si di last time me check, an di few time me check, a just His Majesty mi know bout enuh. Mi know bout Prince Emmanuel and Marcus. Suh yuh si di likkle man dem weh a try shub in demself like dem a God Almighty and dem is dis man yah, dem betta behave demself,” he added.
He questioned why it’s only when a rasta tries to do something new that everyone has negative comments to make. “In ah themself, them fe know that music nah have one lane, it have whole heap a lane,” he continued. Added to this, Rastafarianism should be about love, and people who claim to be part of the movement should not go around bashing people for their effort.
According to Fantan Mojah, even Rastafarian elder Earl ‘Chinna’ Smith, also known as the High Priest of Reggae Guitar, has no problem with the video. In fact, he likes it. “You know seh a one elder I link more time. Yeh, mi link few a dem but mi can call dah one yah name. Yuh si Chinna Smith, real godfaada; him nu hide nuttn. Chinna Smith a one a di teacha inna music,” he said.
He added: “Suh if mi godfaada neva cool with it him would call mi and seh “Fantan mi nu like it enuh”. Di man like it from di first day him see it. Yeh…Very first day him si it him like it.”
Mojah shared that he believed his video was still tame when compared to Intence’s “Pickachu” video, which also drew heavy criticism because of a scene where the artiste ashes a joint in a woman’s mouth.
“Look at it dis way. Rememba I nuh have no girl inna it yuh know Winford, weh mi a smoke and use dem mouth as ash tray. Yuh nuh si dat inna mi video,” he said. There is also no inappropriate content in his video, he went on to say.
“Yuh nuh si no two girl a kiss inna mi video. Yuh si a video wid some girl inna swimwear. Swimwear; look good, bath suit, dem look good inna dem ting, perform inna mi video, yea, nice, properly.” He added that the song has done well for his career and that he stands by his music.