His singles “Get Busy” and “Temperature” topped the charts in the United States, and most of his albums have been nominated for the Grammy’sÂ Best Reggae Album, withÂ Dutty RockÂ winning the award. Sean Paul has also been featured in many other singles including chart-toppers “Baby Boy” byÂ BeyoncÃ©, “What About Us” byÂ The Saturdays, “Rockabye” byÂ Clean Bandit, and â€œCheap Thrillsâ€ byÂ Sia.
Sean Paul Henriques was born in Kingston, Jamaica to parents Garth and Frances on 9 January 1973. His mother is a painter.Â His paternal grandfather was of Portuguese Jewish descent, hence his Portuguese last name of Henriques; his father is of Portuguese and Indo-Jamaican descent, while his paternal grandmother wasÂ Afro-Jamaican. His mother is of English andÂ Chinese-JamaicanÂ descent.Â Sean Paul was raised as aÂ Catholic.Â Many members of his family are swimmers. His grandfather was on the first Jamaican men’s national water polo team.Â His father also played water polo for the team in the 1960s, and competed in long-distance swimming, while Paul’s mother was a butterfly swimmer.Â Paul played for the national water polo team from the age of 13 to 21, when he gave up the sport in order to launch his musical career.Â He attendedÂ Wolmer’s Boys’ SchoolÂ and the College of Arts, Science, and Technology, now known as theÂ University of Technology, where he was trained in commerce with an aim of pursuing an occupation in swimming.
In 2012, Paul married his long-term girlfriend Jodi Stewart, a Jamaican TV host.Â In August 2016, it was announced that the couple was expecting their first child.Â On 26 February 2017, Sean Paul announced the birth of his son, Levi Blaze.Â Their second child, Remi, was born on 20 August 2019.
Paul has suggested that Jamaican musicians making use of “hardcoreÂ patois“, a mixture ofÂ EnglishÂ with several languages spoken in Jamaica, create a language barrier that prevents them from becoming successful in theÂ United StatesÂ and theÂ United Kingdom.
1994â€“2000:Â Stage One
Manager and producer Jeremy Harding heard about Sean Paul[when?]Â when Harding’s brother told him about seeing someone at a smallÂ open micÂ event in Kingston who sounded a lot like theÂ dancehallÂ DJ andÂ toasterÂ Super Cat.Â Harding eventually met the singer when Paul came by his studio to ask for some advice. During the meeting Paul recorded a vocal over Harding’s rhythm track and in the process created the song “Baby Girl”.Â Paul began hanging out at the studio every day, and the pair collaborated on several more tracks. When they recorded “Infiltrate” they decided they had something good enough to get on the radio. As Sean Paul started to attract local attention, Harding began looking after his affairs. He later toldÂ HitQuartersÂ that his support of Paul’s fledgling career initially led him assuming the roles of “DJ, manager, road manager and security guard.”Â Paul made a cameo appearance in the 1998 filmÂ BellyÂ on stage performing. He made a successful collaboration withÂ DMXÂ andÂ Mr. Vegas, “Top Shotter”, to the soundtrack of the film. In 2000, Paul released his debut album,Â Stage OneÂ withÂ VP Records.
2001â€“2004:Â Dutty Rock
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In 2002, Sean Paul continued his work with manager/producer Jeremy Harding, and after a joint venture deal with his label VP Records and Atlantic Records, announced the release of his second album,Â Dutty Rock. Pushed by the success of the singles “Gimme the Light” and theÂ BillboardÂ Hot 100Â topper, “Get Busy“, the album was a worldwide success, eventually selling over six million copies. The albumÂ Dutty RockÂ won the Reggae Album of the year at theÂ 46th Annual Grammy AwardsÂ in 2004. “Get Busy” was also nominated for best Rap Song in that year. Simultaneously, Sean Paul was heard onÂ BeyoncÃ©‘s U.S. #1 single “Baby Boy” andÂ Blu Cantrell‘s “Breathe“, a chart hit in Europe. Both helped to push his reputation further still in the United States. This album also helped develop the genre ofÂ dancehall pop,Â a musical fusion between the rhythmic styles and melodies of dancehall and pop music.He appeared onÂ Punk’d,Â 106 & Park,Â Sean Paul Respect,Â Making the VideoÂ (“Get Busy”, “Gimme the Light“, and “Like Glue“) and his music videos have been broadcast onÂ MTVÂ andÂ BET.
2005â€“08:Â The Trinity
Paul’s third albumÂ The TrinityÂ was released on 27 September 2005. The album produced five big hits, “We Be Burnin’“, “Ever Blazin’“, “Give It Up to Me“, “Never Gonna Be the Same” and the U.S. chart-topping smash hit “Temperature“. The video of “Give It Up to Me” (featuringÂ Keyshia Cole) was featured in the filmÂ Step UpÂ in 2006. He was nominated for four awards at the 2006Â Billboard Music Awards, including male artist of the year, rap artist of the year, hot 100 single of the year, and pop single of the year for “Temperature”.Â He also won anÂ American Music AwardÂ for “Give It Up to Me” beatingÂ Kanye WestÂ andÂ Nick LacheyÂ who were also nominated for the award. “Send It On” fromÂ The TrinityÂ featured on the 2005 VauxhallÂ CorsaÂ advert. Sean Paul often contributes his songs to variousÂ Riddim DrivenÂ albums by VP Records. In March 2007, he returned to Jamaica to perform at theÂ Cricket World Cup 2007Â opening ceremony.
2009â€“10:Â Imperial Blaze
The album consists of 20 tracks including “So Fine”, “Press it Up”, “She Want Me”, “Private Party” which are party tracks and also love songs such as “Hold My Hand” (feat Keri Hilson), “Lately”, “Now That I’ve Got Your Love” among others. Producers on the album include Don Corleone, Jeremy Harding, and Sean’s brother Jason ‘Jigzagula’ Henriques.Â All the songs of the album have been added to Sean Paul’s Myspace pageÂ on the day of release of the album.
The album spawned eight music videos: “Always On My Mind (withÂ Da’Ville)”, “Give It to YouÂ (withÂ Eve)”, “Watch Them Roll“, “Back It Up” (with Leftside), “(I Wanna See You) Push It Baby” (withÂ Pretty Ricky), “Hit ‘Em” (with Fahrenheit and his brother Jason “Jigzagula” Henriques), “Come Over” withÂ Estelle,Â and also the video of his first single, “So Fine“.
Sean Paul appeared inÂ Shaggy‘s video, “Save A Life”, which also includes appearances fromÂ Elephant ManÂ andÂ Da’Ville, among others. In an effort to raise money for a children’s hospital, Shaggy, Sean Paul and others had a benefit concert. All proceeds went towards getting new equipment and technology ‘For Aid to the Bustamante Hospital for Children’. During the premiere for MNET’sÂ Big Brother Africa: All-StarsÂ on 18 July 2010, he performed his songs “Temperature”, “Hold My Hand”, and “So Fine”.
2011â€“12:Â Tomahawk Technique
The first single “Got 2 Luv U” features vocals from American singerÂ Alexis Jordan. It was released on 19 July 2011 byÂ Atlantic Records. The song was written by Sean Paul,Â Ryan TedderÂ andÂ StargateÂ and produced by Stargate.
“She Doesn’t Mind” is the second single from the album. It was written by Sean Paul,Â ShellbackÂ andÂ Benny BlancoÂ and was produced by Shellback and Benny Blanco. It was released on 29 September 2011 onÂ NRJÂ andÂ SkyrockÂ (French radios), and toÂ iTunesÂ on 31 October.Â Like its proceeder, “Got 2 Luv U”, it topped the charts in Switzerland, but it debuted at that spot. Sean appeared on theÂ Never Mind the BuzzcocksÂ episode which aired on 21 November 2011.
Tomahawk TechniqueÂ was released on 18 September 2012 in the U.S. The album was nominated for the best reggae album in theÂ 55th Grammy awards.
2013â€“15:Â Full Frequency
During 2013, Paul worked on his sixth studio albumÂ Full Frequency, which was released on 18 February 2014.Â The first single on the album, “Other Side of Love”, was released to iTunes on 10 June 2013.Â The second single, “Entertainment”, which featuresÂ 2 ChainzÂ andÂ Juicy J, was released on 25 June 2013.Â Paul released the official remix to “Entertainment” on 3 September 2013 with an additional feature fromÂ Nicki Minaj.Â “Turn It Up” was released as a single in the UK on 20 October 2013. It was to be released in Germany on 22 November 2013. “Want Dem All” was released as a single in the U.S. on 5 November 2013. The album features guest appearances fromÂ Damian Marley,Â Iggy Azalea,Â Brick & Lace,Â Konshens, Nicki Minaj, 2 Chainz and Juicy J. Also in 2013, Paul was featured on the single “What About Us” by British girl groupÂ The Saturdays. The single went straight to the top of the Official UK Charts with over 100,000 sales in its first week, becoming the fastest selling single of the year at the time of release.
In January 2014, Paul was the main international artist at Fiestas Palmares 2014Â in Costa Rica. Also in 2014, Paul was featured on the official English-language version of long-running Latin American chart topper “Bailando” byÂ Enrique IglesiasÂ featuringÂ Gente de ZonaÂ andÂ Descemer Bueno. The video for the English version was shot concurrently with the video for the Spanish version in Santo Domingo. The English version reached top 10 status in the United States and topping the charts of several other countries.
Sean Paul appeared on theÂ Apocalypse SoonÂ EP by electronic groupÂ Major Lazer, on the track “Come On to Me“, which was released as the second single from the album, after “Aerosol Can”, a collaboration withÂ Pharrell Williams.Â He also collaborated with Nigerian recording artistÂ TimayaÂ on a remix of his song “Bum Bum”. An accompanying video directed by Shutah Films was released online on 11 April.Â The album was also nominated forÂ Best Reggae AlbumÂ at the Grammy’s in 2015. But, in September 2014, Sean Paul confirmed that he had left Atlantic Records and will become an independent artist.Â On 6 July 2015, Paul released the music video for his song “Take It Low” on the albumÂ Full Frequency.
2016â€“present:Â Mad Love the Prequel
Under new management of Steve “Urchin” & Jules Dougall, Sean Paul enjoyed a commercial resurgence in his career throughout 2016 after being featured on three largely successful hit singles by Australian singerÂ Sia, girl bandÂ Little MixÂ and classical crossover groupÂ Clean Bandit. On 6 February 2016, Paul performed in the opening ceremony ofÂ Pakistan Super League. On 11 February 2016, Sia released a remix version of her song “Cheap Thrills” featuring Paul. The song became an international hit, reaching number one in more than 15 countries, including the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Sweden. On 11 April 2016, it was confirmed that Paul would be featured on a track by Little Mix called “Hair“, from their third albumÂ Get Weird.
In June 2016, he signed withÂ Island Records.Â In November 2016, Paul citedÂ Toots and the MaytalsÂ as inspiration when it comes to his own personal career longevity by saying, “I’ve seen some great people in my industry, you know, people likeÂ Toots… Toots and the Maytals. Toots he’s a great reggae artist and heâ€™s still doing it… He’s up there in years and he’s doing it. Those kind of artists inspire me. I know I’m just going to keep on doing music as long as I can.”Â In October 2016, Clean Bandit released the song “Rockabye“, which features Paul and English singerÂ Anne-Marie.Â It spent nine consecutive weeks at number one of the UK Singles Chart, and gained the covetedÂ Christmas number one.Â On 18 November 2016, he released “No Lie” featuringÂ Dua Lipa, which served as the lead single from his EPÂ Mad Love The Prequel.
It was announced that he would receive theÂ Order of Distinction, Commander class (CD) from the Jamaican government on 21 October 2019, “for contribution to the global popularity and promotion of reggae music”.
- Stage OneÂ (2000)
- Dutty RockÂ (2002)
- The TrinityÂ (2005)
- Imperial BlazeÂ (2009)
- Tomahawk TechniqueÂ (2012)
- Full FrequencyÂ (2014)
Awards and nominations
|Year||Nominee / work||Award||Result||Ref.|
|2004||Himself||Best New Artist||Nominated|||
|“Get Busy“||Best Male Rap Solo Performance||Nominated|
|Dutty Rock||Best Reggae Album||Won|
|2017||“Cheap Thrills“Â (withÂ Sia)||Best Pop Duo/Group Performance||Nominated|
|2003||American Music Awards||Favorite Hip-Hop/Rap Male Artist||Nominated|
|Favorite Hip-Hop/Rap Album (Dutty Rock)|
|BET Awards||Best New Artist|
|MTV Video Music Awards||Best Dance Video (“Get Busy“)|
|Best New Artist in a Video (“Get Busy“)|
|MuchMusic Video Awards||Best International Video (“Gimme the Light“)||Won|
|MTV Europe Music Awards||Best New Act of the Year|
|Source Awards||Dancehall Reggae Album of the Year (Dutty Rock)|
|2004||International Reggae and World Music Awards||Entertainer of the Year|
|MTV Video Music Awards||Best Choreography in a Video (“Like Glue“)||Nominated|
|2005||MOBO Awards||Best Reggae Act|
|International Reggae and World Music Awards||Entertainer of the Year (shared with Wyclef; Malachi Smith; Beenie Man)||Won|
|ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Music Award||Top Reggae Artist of the Year|
|2006||American Music Awards||Favorite Pop/Rock Male Artist|
|MOBO Awards||Best Reggae Act|
|MTV Video Music Awards||Best Dance Video (“Temperature“)||Nominated|
|Best Choreography in a Video (“Temperature“)|
|MTV Video Music Awards Japan||Best Reggae Video (“We Be Burnin’“)|
|MuchMusic Video Awards||Best International Artist (“Temperature“)|
|World Music Awards||World’s Best Rap/Hip-Hop Artist|
|BillboardÂ Music Awards||Male Artist of the Year|
|Hot 100 Single of the Year (Temperature)|
|Pop Single of the Year (“Temperature“)|
|Rap Artist of the Year|
|MTV Europe Music Awards||Best Male|
|2007||NRJ Music Awards||Best International Male Artist of the Year|
|Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards||Favorite Male Singer|
|MTV Video Music Awards Japan||Best Reggae Video (“Temperature“)|
|Soul Train Awards||Best Dance Cut (“(When You Gonna) Give It Up to Me“)|
|ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Music Awards||Reggae Artist of the Year||Won|
|MTV Romania Music Awards||Best International Artist|
|2009||MOBO Awards||Best Reggae Act|
|Soul Train Awards||Best Reggae Artist|
|2010||MTV Video Music Awards Japan||Best Reggae Video (“So Fine“)||Nominated|
|2012||NRJ Music Awards||Best International Male Artist of the Year|
|MTV Europe Music Award||Best World Stage|
|Soul Train Awards||Best Caribbean Performance||Won|
|MTV Video Music Awards Japan||Best Reggae Video (“She Doesn’t Mind“)|
|MOBO Awards||Best Reggae Act|
|2013||Youth View Awards||Favorite Local International Artiste of the Year|
|Star Awards||Album of the Year (Tomahawk Technique)|
|MOBO Awards||Best Reggae Act|
|2017||Brit Awards||British Single of the Year (“Rockabye“)Â (withÂ Clean BanditÂ andÂ Anne-Marie)||Nominated|
|British Video (“Hair“)Â (withÂ Little Mix)|
|British Video (“Rockabye“)Â (with Clean Bandit and Anne-Marie)|
|MTV Europe Music Awards||Best Song (“Rockabye“)Â (withÂ Clean BanditÂ andÂ Anne-Marie)|