Words by Jesse Serwer–
As his star has grown, dancehall’s newest star Tommy Lee has come under fire for the demonic imagery invoked in his lyrics. While it’s easy to understand why people, particularly in Jamaica, are troubled by the darkness that pervades the Vybz Kartel protege’s music, it seems that his motives are more theatrical than diabolical.
“Shook (Uncle Demon)” is probably Lee’s most chilling song, but his brand-new video for the recent single, premiered online Friday night, is pure camp. Lee, seen in the video sporting facepaint vaguely reminiscent of ’80s metal singer King Diamond, says the video was inspired by Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” and the haunted past of Port Royal. Now quaint, the seaside town where the video was shot was the world’s seediest den of iniquity before earthquakes destroyed it 400 years ago. “Uncle Demon is entertainment, mi want recreate the horror house from school days and weh me see Michael Jackson a gwaan wid back inna the days,” Tommy explained, in an e-mail sent out with the video. Watch the video below, and judge for yourself.
Meanwhile, Lee has just announced he will be releasing his first proper artist release next month. The nine-song Grim Reaper EP will be out on iTunes Oct. 2—just in time for Halloween.