Garnett Silk’s Death Still a Mystery Almost 30 Years Later

Thursday, June 20, 2024, 3:25 PM GMT-5

The death of Reggae artiste Garnett Silk has led to numerous speculations. Despite authorities ruling his death as an accident, many fans are still not convinced by the official explanation. Garnett Silk died at the age of 28 after gaining global recognition and being on the verge of international superstardom.

The entertainer, who hailed from Brumalia in Mandeville, Manchester, started performing music at age 12. Born on April 2, 1966, Garnett grew up in the Hatfield district and attended the Hatfield All-Age School.

Before taking the moniker Garnett Silk, he called himself Little Bimbo. Garnett, legally named Garnett Damion Smith, started his career as a deejay, developed a friendship with Tony Rebel, who was an upcoming deejay at the time, and later moved to Kingston.

Afterwards, Tony Rebel introduced Garnett to Rastafarianism, leading Garnett to convert and greatly influencing the Rastafarian Renaissance with his spiritual and cultural music. He became a spiritual leader, influencing others such as Buju Banton and Luciano to embrace spirituality, according to the Reggae Association Society.

Later, Garnett started singing soulful songs following Derrick Morgan’s advice to switch from deejaying to singing, which ultimately catapulted his career. The artiste got a deal with VP Records and released his best-selling album, It’s Growing, in 1992.

In 1993, he released his second album, Gold, which reached No. 1 on the Reggae charts in the United States, Jamaica, Canada, and Japan. Among his popular tracks is Hello Mama Africa. Garnett was described as the next Bob Marley by music enthusiasts due to his talent, popularity, and spirituality.

As his career continued to flourish, he toured and then signed with MCA Records in early 1994. He also performed at Reggae Sun Splash and Reggae Sumfest. However, 1994 was also the year Garnett died horrifically in a fire with his mother.

According to reports, on December 9, Garnett, his mother, his two brothers, and friends were all at his mother’s one-bedroom house in Mandeville. Silk reportedly had a shotgun because he had been receiving threats, and thieves were stealing the construction materials he had purchased for the new house he was building for his mother.

It is said that there was a demonstration at the house with the weapon, and the gun accidentally discharged, resulting in pellets from the gun striking the gas cylinder, causing an explosion. Garnett, his brothers, and his friends made it out of the burning house, and when the singer realised his mother was trapped inside, he rushed inside the house to get her and perished with his mother.

Although the police concluded that it was an accident based on their findings from the scene, which included a shotgun, illegal firearms, and ammunition, many believed Garnett was killed due to jealousy. People close to Garnett, including Freddie McGregor and Richie Stevens, have even disputed the claim that the Rastafarian had a gun.

Many Jamaican musicians have suffered a similar fate as Garnett Silk, losing their lives in various incidents and leaving behind the legacies they created.

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