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Discussion in 'General and Trending Stories' started by LadyDeath, Aug 27, 2008.

  1. LadyDeath

    LadyDeath Senior Marketing Officer
    Staff Member

    Jun 9, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Laventille resident Stephen "Shines" Sampson, who is under investigation by police for his part in a violent "FBI" video, yesterday described himself as a peace-loving citizen who does not battle anymore in rap.

    Acting Police Commissioner James Philbert said on Monday that the individuals who took part in the video preaching violence against the police, which was posted on YouTube, were to be investigated.

    Up to yesterday, no warrant had been issued for the arrest of 39-year-old Sampson.

    However, Philbert was said to have issued instructions for his investigating officers to consult the Director of Public Prosecutions on the matter, to see whether the police can proceed with any action.

    Speaking exclusively to the Express yesterday, Sampson said he had not been contacted by police. He said the whole affair was "a nightmare" and described the song and video as "a mix-tape track and experimental video that was never supposed to be seen by the public".

    He said, "Anyone in the local hip-hop industry can tell you that those lyrics I used on that song are from verses I used when battling in a rhyme cipher. Those lyrics were used to humiliate my opponents and defeat them in lyrical battle, but I never recorded them. Then, a Guyanese friend of mine called Zagga B came up with the hook, which talks about 'cochore' and Babylon, not Cudjoe! Because I needed another track for my latest mix-tape at the time, we put it together, but that song was done quite back in 2004 when I just started growing my ras."

    "Cochore" is a Guyanese slang which is used to refer to a police informant. Sampson said he was acquainted with recently executed gang leader Merlin "Cudjoe" Allamby because they lived in the same area. He recalled that Allamby had been interviewed by him and featured in Part One of the "Real Talk" DVD Magazine.

    The "Real Talk" DVD Magazine features interviews and testimonials from local artistes and entertainment industry figures, as well as ordinary citizens concerning pressing issues in society and the industry. After three successful editions, the creators of the DVD, Grassroots Entertainment, spawned a popular television programme of the same name, which airs weekly on Gayelle The Channel. Sampson is the host of both the popular DVD and this television programme.

    At the time of the "FBI" video, Sampson had a dispute with the members of Grassroots and also called their name in the song. Today, they work together to produce film and edit the "Real Talk" series for broadcast on Gayelle. Sampson said this is indicative of the difference between the imagery depicted in the video and reality.

    "Yes, I know that this video is not a positive reflection of my character, my neighbourhood or the hip-hop community in general, which is why it was never released in any form or fashion. It was one of my first attempts at creating a video and I tried to make it as interesting as possible with what I had at the time.

    "Today, I am a much more responsible citizen, and I try to help and uplift the youths in my community by teaching them some of the skills I have learnt and encouraging them to get involved in music and the arts, instead of liming on the block or doing illegal things that can get them in trouble."

    Admitting that the guns used in the video were not real handguns, Sampson said he was not even present during the taping of those parts of the video which featured the St Barb's Police Station in the background.

    He said, "That video was done four years ago, when I was just learning how to edit videos, so I was happy to get any kind of footage. We shot one part on one day with a cyber-cam I borrowed for my computer, but Saga was not there at the time. When he came, he complained about the fact that we shot the video without him, so they went and shot that scene the next day.

    "I am a peace-loving citizen now, I don't even battle anymore in rap and if my family get in trouble, who would I have to call, not the police? This is a lesson I have learnt and I hope others will learn from it as well to be careful what you do and say when you're young and reckless because it can come back to haunt you."

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