DEEJAY Capleton is being lauded by a respected academic as a change agent through his annual live show, A St Mary Mi Come From.
Dr Michael Witter, a senior member of the University of the West Indies' economics faculty, said A St Mary Mi Come From is more than just a dancehall show, pointing to the numerous charities that have benefited since its inception 12 years ago.
"What A St Mary Mi Come From is showing is that we can go beyond social critique. We can go into social construction," said Witter during the show's 2012 launch Tuesday evening at 28 Courtney Walsh Drive in St Andrew.
Pointing to Capleton's musical entreprenuership and benevolence, Witter added:
"What music has allowed is for some people to build their own thing. That's okay. But what it is showing is that we can go beyond building our own thing to helping to build the community in the way in which our forefathers worked together to build the community. And, indeed from that point of view, to go on to build the country."
Capleton (whose real name is Clifton Bailey) was born in the district of Islington. He was part of dancehall's new wave in the early 1990s, scoring with risque hits like Almshouse and B...o Red.
He later became a Rastafarian and is now regarded as one of dancehall's elders.
Beneficiaries of A St Mary Mi Come From include the Baccas Wood Basic School, Port Maria Primary School, Port Maria Hospital, Annotto Bay Hospital, St Ann's Bay Hospital, Oberlin High School, Haile Selassie High School, St Mary Infirmary, and Mothers In Crisis.
This year's event takes place August 5 at the Gray's Inn Sports Complex in Annotto Bay, under the theme 'Ole Time Something Come Back Again in Real Original Dancehall Style'.
Sizzla Kalonji, Louie Culture, Cocoa Tea, Romain Virgo, Beenie Man, Macka Diamond, Glen Washington, George Nooks, and The Viceroys are some of the acts confirmed.