Merciless hailed as true friend
Casket bearing the remains of dancehall deejay Merciless at the St Gabriel's Anglican Church in Clarendon on Saturday. (Photos: Llewylyn Wynter)

MEMBERS of Jamaica's entertainment fraternity turned out in their numbers to pay their final respects to dancehall artiste Merciless at the St Gabriel's Anglican Church Hall on Church Street, Clarendon, on Saturday.

Mr Lexx, Little Hero, Alozade, Don Mafia, and Spragga Benz were among the scores of mourners present.

In his tribute to his late colleague, Spragga Benz performed an acapella version of his song Sleep with Angels. He said Merciless proved himself to be a true friend.

Don Mafia

"Merciless is not just a friend, but a very good friend. Merciless would not have missed my funeral and so I had to show my surpport. When his wife died I was round to show my support, and when my son Carlyle died he was there for me," he told the Jamaica Observer.

"If I had any type of situation and needed help, and there were five people I could count on, Merciless would be among the five persons," he continued.

Spragga Benz said he met Merciless some 28 years ago at Arrows Recording Studio on Windward Road in Kingston.

Spragga Benz

"He [Merciless] was there to voice a dubplate and throughout these years there has not been a dull moment, especially as entertainers travelling abroad doing shows. I can remember when Merciless gave us a scare. He was supposed to perform at this show in Hollywood and when we were looking for him, no Merciless. We called his hotel room phone, no answer. After several attempts failed to get to him, we made a decision to kick off the door to his room but someone suggested getting a spare key. On entering Merciless was well cloaked up under the sheet sleeping. Then, to add humour, he began blaming us for not calling him," said Spragga Benz.

Mr Lexx

Merciless, born Leonard Bartley, was found dead in a guest house on Walker's Avenue, off Beechwood Avenue, in Kingston on July 19. A post-mortem was inconclusive.

He made his recording debut in 1994 with Lend Out Mi Mercy. In addition to Gal Dem Gizzada and Mama Cooking he also garnered new fans with Mavis and Mr Whodini.

The final resting place of dancehall deejay Merciless.

He was renowned for several clashes. The most famous was against Ninjaman, Bounty Killer, and Beenie Man in a lyrical face-off at Sting 2000 at Jamworld Entertainment Complex in St Catherine.

Merciless leaves behind his mother Etle Bartley; brothers Leroy and Larry; sisters Jacqueline and Claire; his four sons Isaiah, Leonard, Judah, and Jacob; three grandchildren and other relatives.

Merciless was interred in a family plot in Clarendon.

An aerial view of Merciless's casket and mourners
Merciless's niece, Crystal Bartley (left) and mom Etle Bartley at the deejay's funeral on Saturday.
Camouflaged-clad pall-bearers at Merciless's funeral

Now you can read the Jamaica Observer ePaper anytime, anywhere. The Jamaica Observer ePaper is available to you at home or at work, and is the same edition as the printed copy available at https://bit.ly/epaper-login

HOUSE RULES

  1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper; email addresses will not be published.
  2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.
  3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.
  4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.
  5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.
  6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.
  7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy