Reggae/Dancehall star Buju Banton has earned a Gold certification in Canada for his 1994 hit Champion.
According to Music Canada, the song was issued the Gold Single certification on July 27, after it sold more than 40,000 units from digital and physical single sales and on-demand audio streaming in the country.
Champion, a catchy anthem about what makes a woman qualify for the title, is Banton’s first song to be certified in Canada.
Produced by Donavan Germain and co-written by Leroy Sibbles, the song was recorded on the same riddim as Sibbles’ No Bad Feelings, Beenie Man’s Beat Of The Ghetto, and Spragga Benz’s Move Up The Line.
It appeared on Buju’s fourth studio album ‘Til Shiloh in 1995.
Champion is the Grammy Award winner’s biggest hit in the US, peaking at No. 17 on the Billboard US Bubbling Under Hot 100 chart, and No. 67 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart.
It has been sampled by several artists over the years, including Selena Gomez in Like A Champion (2013), Eve in Eve Of Destruction (1998), Busta Rhymes and Nicki Minaj in #Twerkit (2013).
The song’s official music video currently has over 20 million views on YouTube.
‘Til Shiloh, which also featured Murderer, Untold Stories, ‘Til I’m Laid To Test and Not An Easy Road, is certified Gold in the United States.
“Til Shiloh was a turning point not only in my musical career but in my life as a young man. Always. I’ve always seen the culture promulgated in Jamaica. But then the culture came directly to me. And it was a time in my life when I had to make a decision: do I want to continue singing dancehall or do I want to broaden my musical horizon and [challenge] myself to inculcate different songs, different instrumentations, different musical compositions? The latter was more appealing to me,” Banton recently told EDITIONML.
He added: “Prior to the journey of making ‘Til Shiloh, Donovan Germain didn’t know my direction but he said, “If this is what you’re feeling, express it.” That was the best thing anyone could ever say to me as a young man. It wasn’t like, “Nah mon, you’re supposed to sing dancehall for the girls dem.” He allowed me to grow and he was right beside me. Lisa Cortes was there also, I cannot forget her she was instrumental and pivotal in my executing [the album].”
In 2020, the album was reissued on its 25th anniversary with remixes of Not An Easy Road, Wanna Be Loved and a unreleased track called Come Inna The Dance.
The singer, whose real name is Mark Myrie, is set to release his 13th studio album, Born For Greatness, come September 8.
The 17-track set features notable collaborations with Victoria Mònét in Body Touching Body, Stephen Marley in Feel A Way, and Snoop Dogg in High Life.