Fantan Mojah (Photo: Karl Mclarty)

Never one to hold back, Fantan Mojah takes his detractors to task on Chat Dem A Chat, his latest song, released recently by Billy Joe Media.

The feisty deejay credits his "Maroon power" for him staying the distance in an industry replete with one-hit wonders.

Known for songs such as Hungry and Hail The King, Fantan Mojah told the Jamaica Observer that he is long past worrying about when his next hit song will come.

"When I'm writing everything comes natural, and it's for the people that digest the message that decides whether a song is a hit or not. Delivering the message is more important than a hit record," he said.

Chat Dem A Chat is strong on metaphors meant for his critics, from "chop dem like a Samurai" to "dem a try mix mi up wid di media". The latter may allude to a well-publicised spat with media personality Mutabaruka last year that dominated social media for several weeks.

The burly Fantan Mojah has been doing the rounds recently with a handful of new releases, including Jah Movement and Everyday 9 To 5, which, like Chat Dem A Chat, were released during the summer.

In July, he made a comeback on the American live show scene, performing at Culture Fest in Lauderhill, South Florida. There are tentative plans for him to perform in Europe, possibly in November this year.

"My strongest fan base is Europe and Africa, as for some reason that's where most of my bookings come from. My fans are the ones keeping me in the game and the message in the music that resonates with the people," he said.

Fantan Mojah (born Owen Moncrieffe) preceded the so-called roots-reggae revival by a decade. He broke through in 2005 with Hungry and Hail The King, hard-hitting spiritual songs produced by Downsound Records.

Hail The King, his album for that label, was equally impressive. Three years later came Stronger, which was driven by the title song. Rebel I Am and Rasta Got Soul, released in 2012 and 2016, respectively, are Fantan Mojah's other albums.

BY HOWARD CAMPBELL Observer senior writer

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