SEAN PAUL

Jamaican dancehall superstar Sean Paul broke into the global mainstream in the early 2000s with his pop-friendly party jams, while a late-2010s resurgence introduced him to a fresh generation of fans via high-profile collaborations with pop and electronic artists. Born Sean Paul Francis Henriques on January 8, 1973, the multi-ethnic Paul (his parents had Portuguese, Chinese, and Jamaican forebears) grew up comfortably in St. Andrew, Jamaica; his mother was a renowned painter. He was a skilled athlete, excelling in swimming and especially water polo, playing for the Jamaican national team in the latter. Although his education was enough to land him a prosperous career, dancehall music remained Paul's first love, particularly crafting rhythm tracks. He became a DJ after he began writing his own songs, patterning his style largely after Super Cat and finding a mentor in Don Yute; he also found contacts in several members of the reggae-pop band Third World in 1993, which helped him foster business connections.

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