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» BREAKING NEWS, Featured » JOE BOGDONOVICH TALKS ABOUT HIS RELATIONSHIP WITH NINJAMAN!

JOE BOGDONOVICH TALKS ABOUT HIS RELATIONSHIP WITH NINJAMAN!

BY HOWARD CAMPBELL
Observer senior writer—-

 

Given their flamboyant personalities, there was bound to be headlines aplenty when Josef Bogdanovich signed deejay Ninjaman to his Downsound Records in 2013.

The tandem became official one year after the controversial entertainer was released from jail on a $2-million bail.

Ninjaman, his son Janeil and Dennis Clayton were charged for the murder of Ricardo “Trooper” Johnson in the Marl Road area of Kingston four years earlier.

Joe Bogdonovich

Joe Bogdonovich

Last Monday, as the three men were found guilty of murder in Kingston’s Home Circuit Court, Bogdanovich was preparing for his Caribbean Love fund-raising show at the National Indoor Centre in Kingston.

The affable American, rarely short on words, was measured as he reflected on his relationship with, arguably, dancehall’s most controversial figure.

“My experience with him was nothing but positive. It’s been a roller-coaster ride but personally, I have a lotta emotions right now,” Bogdanovich told the Jamaica Observer.

As a recording artist, Ninjaman was past his best when he linked with Downsound. His days as a tabloid darling, however, were far from over.

By the time their partnership ended in early 2015, there was an exodus of artists from Downsound. But Ninjaman was enjoying a career revival, performing on major shows such as Sting, Reggae Sumfest and GT Taylor Christmas Extravaganza.

Ninjaman

Ninjaman

In 2014, he even travelled to Trinidad to give youth in that country a talk on the dangers of a life in crime!

Bogdanovich said he first met the troubled toaster in the mid-1990s when he moved to Jamaica from Los Angeles to establish Downsound. It would not be until 15 years later that they formed a professional relationship.

“He made an indelible impression on me, he’s an innovative and talented person,” he declared.

According to Bogdanovich, he last saw Ninjaman in October, shortly before he was jailed and awaiting trial.

“He looked a little haggard, stressed. It’s really sad this is the way things turned out for him,” he said.

Ninjaman and his co-accused are scheduled to be sentenced on December 15.

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