With both a bona fide genre smash and genre-bending work in his back pocket, singer Popcaan is a Jamaican star who began his dancehall journey in 2007.
It was then that he joined Vybz Kartel's posse and was introduced to the Jamaican public via Kartel's shows at festivals like Reggae Sumfest and Sting. Singles like "It Nuh Work So," "Jah Jah Protect Me," "Hot Grabba," and "Gangsta City" helped make Popcaan a regular feature of Jamaican radio, but in 2010 he became a global reggae name when he landed on the remix of Kartel's massive hit "Clarks." The year 2011 saw Popcaan hit big with the solo singles "Ravin" and "Party Shot," but next year's "Only Man She Want" hit even bigger, winding up on reggae and R&B radio worldwide along with aptly titled compilations like Reggae Gold 2012 and Certified Boomshots. As Kartel landed in prison facing murder charges, Popcaan became the leading artist in his mentor's camp, dubbed Gaza or Gaza Empire. Singles and mixtapes like 2013's Yiy Change kept the Gaza Empire in focus, while the 2014 album Where We Come From broadened Popcaan's horizon with electro production coming from Brooklyn's Dre Skull. The album was released by Skull's Mixpak label. ~ David Jeffries