The Jamaican-born and based artist was in his early 20s when his 12-inch single “Oh Carolina” exploded out of the New York dancehall underground and topped the UK pop charts in 1993. Unleashing his gruff vocals over a raw and uncut rhythm track straight the former U.S. Marine and Desert Storm veteran soon had a rocketing crossover hit and a major label record deal.
Shaggy’s subsequent single, “Boombastic,” topped the UK charts again, and reached No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the U.S. Since then he’s continued to make history year after year, blazing an enviable trail of hits and garnering GRAMMY nominations for his progressive work.
Shaggy has sold over 30 million albums to date, racking up no fewer than eight singles in the Billboard Hot 100, including two that went to No. 1, as well as seven albums on the Billboard 200, with four in the Top 40. The numbers in the UK equally impressive: sixteen Top 40 singles, nine of them reaching the Top 10 and four that shot to No. 1, including “It Wasn’t Me,” the biggest-selling collaboration in UK chart history, outpacing chart-topping duets by the likes of Eminem, Calvin Harris, and Rihanna.
And the smash records keep on coming, from the certified-diamond 2000 album Hotshot, which boasted not one but two No. 1 singles, through to 44/876, a collaborative project with British rock icon Sting, which clocked millions of streams, entered the Top 40 in 14 different countries, has remained atop the Billboard Reggae Album chart for over 4 months, and earned Shaggy his second GRAMMY Award win and the seventh nomination of his career to date.