SIZZLA

BIOGRAPHY

ABOUT SIZZLA KALONJI

Born Miguel Collins on April 17, 1976 in St Mary, Jamaica, Sizzla Kalonji is considered as one of the most prolific artists within the homegrown reggae and dancehall movement. Emerging in the latter half of the 90’s, he began his career in the music industry in his early teenage years, he earned his moniker from Mr. Homer Harris because of his burning appetite for hot soup.After honing his skills, he landed a gig with the Caveman Hi-Fi sound system, where he first made a name for himself as a performer. He cut his first single for the small Zagalou label in 1995, and then Mr. Harris introduced him to Bobby “Digital” Dixon and Luciano. This eventually led to extensive touring with fellow roots and culture artist Luciano, later earning Sizzla critical acclaim.
After honing his skills, he landed a gig with the Caveman Hi-Fi sound system, where he first made a name for himself as a performer. He cut his first single for the small Zagalou label in 1995, and then Mr. Harris introduced him to Bobby “Digital” Dixon and Luciano. This eventually led to extensive touring with fellow roots and culture artist Luciano, later earning Sizzla critical acclaim. However, he didn’t manage a breakout success until saxophonist Dean Fraser recommended him to producer Philip “Fatis” Burrell. Working with Fatis marked an important turning point for Sizzla. with a run of successful singles leading to the release of Sizzla’s debut album, Burning Up (RAS) with the follow-up, Praise Ye Jah (JetStar) a year later.

His major breakthrough came with the release in 1997 of the now classic album, Black Woman and Child (Greensleeves). Along with universal praise came Sizzla’s first nomination for Best International Reggae Artist of the Year at the 1998 MOBO Awards and a place in various magazines’ top 100 albums of the year. Sizzla scored several more hits during 1997, including Like Mountain, Babylon Cowboy, Kings of the Earth, and the Luciano duet Build a Better World. Sizzla released what is arguably one of his best albums to date, Da Real Thing in 2003. The album consisted of strictly roots and lovers rock material with every single tune eventually becoming a bonafide hit.

In his community of August Town, he also began the Sizzla Youth Foundation to provide programming and resources for the youth. Through their initiatives, 2016 marked a historical year for Zero Murders Campaign in the community of August Town with the foundation being honored for its work in ceasing the violence. The Sizzla Youth Foundation Museum is being built and will house a community center, museum, library, computer lab and more. He also started the Augustown Bicycle Club and Crank Up Bikers to give the youth in his community a positive alternative. Sizzla also sponsored in 2019 a delegation of over 10 elders from the Incient Nyahbinghi Council to South Africa to repatriate and work with the Rastafarian Family there.Sizzla is still very much dedicated to uplifting the world, Rastafarian, and the social justice movement. Sizzla Kalonji was named Music Ambassador for the 11th International Roots Homecoming Festival in May 2014, which serves as a bridge between the Diaspora and Africa. Invited by the Ministry of Tourism, he led a delegation of 18 Jamaicans to The Gambia to participate in the historical event. The trip began dialogue around Repatriations for Africans in the Diaspora to Gambia.

His major breakthrough came with the release in 1997 of the now classic album, Black Woman and Child (Greensleeves). Along with universal praise came Sizzla’s first nomination for Best International Reggae Artist of the Year at the 1998 MOBO Awards and a place in various magazines’ top 100 albums of the year. Sizzla scored several more hits during 1997, including Like Mountain, Babylon Cowboy, Kings of the Earth, and the Luciano duet Build a Better World. Sizzla released what is arguably one of his best albums to date, Da Real Thing in 2003. The album consisted of strictly roots and lovers rock material with every single tune eventually becoming a bonafide hit.