Suppose you found out that the beginning of your life on earth was that you were ‘a newborn baby’ found in the garbage in a plastic bag. That’s the beginning of the life of a popular Jamaican reggae artist, YELLOWMAN.
The human spirit is amazing, Yellowman is a black Jamaican man, but he was born an albino (skin pigmentation disorder), as a young boy many people shunned him and treated him very bad. But that same person arises above all that and becomes a liked musician.
Born in 1956, Winston Foster, YELLOWMAN was abandoned by his parents and grew up in the Maxfield Children’s Home and the Catholic orphanage Alpha Boys School in Kingston, Jamaica. In 1979 Yellowman finished second in the Tastee Talent Contest, and people slowly started to realize his creative musical skills.
After many nightclub performances in Jamaica YELLOWMAN’S popularity and music genre lead him to perform at large music concerts in Europe. In the 1980s he signed record contracts with Columbia Records and Greensleeves Records & Publishing which specializes in dancehall and reggae music.
Approximately 1 in every 20 thousand children born in sub-saharan Africa will be an albino child. Ignorance and superstition has made many black parents in Africa believe that it is a curse from god, or a mark of the devil.
In 1982 Yellowman was diagnosed with skin cancer and was told that he only had three more years to live, that diagnosis was later considered inaccurate and YELLOWMAN continued his music career.
In 1986 it was diagnosed that the cancer had spread to his jaw; Yellowman underwent very invasive jaw surgery to remove a malignant tumor. This surgery permanently disfigured Yellowman’s face, as a large portion of the left side of his lower jaw had to be removed to successfully remove the tumor
His 1983 music track “Zungguzungguguzungguzeng”, was remade by Beenie Man and released on July 3, 2020. Yellowman said of the release, “I wish somebody else did”
The most interesting observation about YELLOWMAN over the years is “how a black-man behaves when people treat him as white, and how people behave when they think that someone is white, (caucasian).
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Written & Compiled by digitalCaribbean.Live – digitalBelize.LIVE staff reporter: digitalCaribbean.LIVE@gmail.com