Mercenary set for Sting

WHAT will Sting be without Merciless? The self-proclaimed "Warlord" was a staple of dancehall's most flamboyant show which takes place December 26 at Grizzly's Plantation in Priory, St Ann.

The mouthy deejay died in July but for Sting's return, one of his 'students' will take the stage. His name is Mercenary and he is determined to do his teacher justice.

"Mi always admire Leonard [Merciless's Christian name] style, jus' how him do him thing; him did have a unique style wid him punchline dem," said Mercenary.

Like Merciless (who was from Clarendon), Mercenary (given name Rodger Warren) is proud of his rural roots which are in White Hill, St Elizabeth. After trying his hand at farming he finally achieved his goal this year of becoming a recording artiste.

Top Man, his first released single, came out four months ago. It has been followed by From Rags to Riches, I've Been Missing You, and The Girl dem Lover.

Another similarity Mercenary shares with Merciless is management. Orville "Gaddafi" Hart, who helped guide the latter's career for many years, is Mercenary's manager.

While he performed on two shows that featured his hero, Mercenary never met Merciless. He did a heartfelt tribute to him at his wake in Clarendon in August.

As much as he respects Merciless, Mercenary is eager is to show he is no copycat — and Sting will be the perfect platform to prove that.

"Nuff respect to Leonard 'cause him was a icon but mi always want to be a artiste, dat a my thing. Mi get di chance now fi prove miself," he said.

Howard Campbell

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