My Secret Life: Shaggy, pop star, 42


My parents were... My mum is a rough-necked Jamaican, who would throw their shoe at you in two minutes and bust yo' ass. A very stern Jamaican mum. My father, I didn't know very much.

The house/flat I grew up in... I lived with my mum, but I was always at my grandmother's – she was a softer soul. She taught me to waltz on the veranda and my friends would laugh. But I guess she just wanted to dance.

When I was a child I wanted to... I always wanted to be a fireman. Then I saw King Yellowman perform and I got the music bug. Later I thought: I should have been Hugh Hefner. That would be the perfect job.

If I could change one thing about myself... I wish I wasn't this passionate about music. It's a drawback, because music changes, and sometimes not for the best and you're meant to roll with it even if it's garbage.

You wouldn't know it but I am very good at... art. I paint, I draw, I sketch. I could have gone to art school, but instead I went into the military.

You may not know it but I'm no good at... dancing. There is one move I have, and that's with my pelvis; I've had a lot of practice in that area.

I wish I had never worn... I went climbing the Blue Mountain Peaks and I wore some Timberland boots, thinking I was going for the whole camping thing, dressed to walk, this shit was going on. When I came back down, they were the worst. All the pressure was on your toes, and they're steel-toe capped. I got rid of those bitches after that.

What I see when I look in the mirror... Comedy. I think 'what a joke'.

It's not fashionable but I like... fried stuff. Anything fried tastes really good. In fact anything that's not good for you tastes really good.

My house is... in Jamaica, I have a very traditional home, colonial style, we're talking huge windows, wooden floors, and 11 bathrooms. My latest place is in Miami; it's smaller, there's less furniture, 'cause I kinda got into feng shui. Less is more.

My favourite building... Your Parliament building, it's pretty unique – such attention to detail. The Brits must have really had a lot of time on their hands to do that.

My secret crush is... There are a lot of females that I find very desirable. Jessica Biel, Halle Berry, Nicole Scherzinger – the list goes on and on. I love women, I love what they stand for, their beauty, and that they're passionate about things. Eva Longoria – wow. I thought: 'How shallow!' but then I saw her on the Piers Morgan Show and I realised how much she was doing for good causes. That made me like her. Beauty sometimes comes from within.

Movie heaven... is a shoot 'em up, especially if they're clever with the shooting.

A book that changed me... If you want to hide something from me, put it in a book.

My real-life villains... People who do things they're not passionate about. I'm involved in a lot of charities but at fundraisers you see people who aren't really making a difference – it's just a conversation piece for them. I call them the devil.

The last time I cried... Every time I look at my daughter. I have a six-year-old and I have never experienced love like this.

My life in six words... eventful, exciting, passionate, kind, loving, winning. Always win, darling!

A life in brief

Shaggy was born Orville Richard Burrell in Jamaica in 1968. After moving to New York at 18, he joined the Marines, before returning to Brooklyn where he secured a record deal. His 1993 single "Oh Carolina" was a dancehall-pop crossover hit, and was followed by 1995's chart-topper "Boombastic". In 2001 his album Hot Shot became one of the bestselling reggae albums ever, propelled by the singles "It Wasn't Me" and "Angel". Shaggy is playing at the One Love Peace Festival at Wembley Arena, 31 July. He lives in Jamaica and Miami

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Recruitment Genius: HR and Payroll Manager

£35000 - £38000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This dynamic outsourced contact...

Recruitment Genius: Production & Quality Control Assistant

£19000 - £21000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An excellent opportunity for a ...

Ashdown Group: Group HR Advisor - Kettering - £32,000

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Group HR Advisor with an established...

Guru Careers: HR Manager / HR Generalist

£40 - 50k (DOE) + Bonus: Guru Careers: We are seeking a HR Manager / HR Genera...

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss