EIGHT years ago, dancehall fans warmed to Betta Mus Come and Poverty, socially biting songs by 11-year-old singjay QQ.
Poverty held the number one spot in Jamaica for four weeks, making QQ one of the youngest artistes to top local charts.
He joined an impressive group that includes Delroy Wilson, Dennis Brown and Errol Dunkley.
QQ (Kareem Dawkins) followed up with songs such as Stukie, Tek It to Dem and Skip to Ma Lou, a collaboration with dancer/singjay Ding Dong.
He then dropped out of sight to focus on academics, but returned to the music scene recently with the hits Ghetto Gyal and One Drop.
He spoke to Splash about making the transition from child star to adult dancehall artiste.
"It wasn't that hard; it sometimes has to do with management and marketing," he said. "Thing is, I was never a disc jockey's favourite so I had to prove to them that my songs were worthy of playing," QQ added. "The teenagers were some of my biggest fans and that gave me an edge because my songs are happy and make listeners wanna dance."
QQ is still managed by his father, Joseph Dawkins, who insisted his son beat the books even when he was savouring the success of Betta Mus Come and Poverty.
In 2011, while attending Calabar High School, he earned seven CXC subjects.
Still on a high from Ghetto Gyal and One Drop, QQ is in the recording studio working on a number of singles, including Feel the Vibes and Bawl Out.
He says his ultimate aim is to reach non-dancehall markets.
"I don't want to limit myself to Jamaica and the Caribbean region only. I want to be an international-selling artiste," he declared.