Turbulence the future of a Hungry Town



Even though his stage name is the chaos-inducing 'Turbulence', this 24 year-old artiste is one of the most grounded, humble and focused young artistes you will find in the music business today.

Born Sheldon Campbell January 11, 1980, he attended Swallowfield All Age, and St. Andrew Technical High school before graduating from the latter in 1998.

Turbulence grew up in the poverty-stricken area of St. Andrew which had been charmlessly dubbed 'Hungry Town' by its residents. 'Hungry Town' is actually 6 Mary Crane Lane, Kingston 8, a network of concrete squatter settlements located close to Constant Spring in St. Andrew. However, it was a rough-and-tumble experience for the young man, and he got into mischief at times, but his passionate love for music kept him grounded and led him to the path he needed to follow to fulfil his true potential.

"I grew up with two brothers, one sister and my mother, and it was really hard. Often, we didn’t have enough to eat but there was always a lot of love to go around from my mom because I never knew my father. The place is called 'Hungry Town' and with good reason because a lot of real poor but trying people lived there... sufferation, violence, and real uptown ghetto. But I got through it," he said.
A year after completing his secondary school education, Turbulence hooked up with the Exterminator Record label which already boasted such heavyweight acts such as Luciano and Sizzla. Turbulence's life was about to change forever.

Realising the incredible talent harnessed within the slender frame of this young man, Phillip 'Fattist' Burrell, the head of Exterminator adopted him into the family, and that's where he has remained for the past four years.

During his first year with the camp, Turbulence made an immediate impact with an inspirational gem of a song, 'Think of Peace', and his first ever song, 'On My Way to Zion' which he recorded in 1999, and a critically acclaimed debut album.

On the strength of this album, he became the opening act of dancehall firebrand Sizzla, and after wowing an audience in his first ever performance in Trinidad in front of thousands who had come to see a show headlined by Lauryn Hill, Turbulence never looked back.

"I am really grateful to Exterminator, they are the ones who believed in me and put me on the map. The people there look out for my welfare, it's not just a producer and some artistes, it is a family," he said.

Known for his high-energy, 'riot-inducing' performances, Turbulence has toured the United States extensively, and has been on a number of European and Caribbean tours.
In 2003, he followed up his debut album with sophomore effort, 'Rising', and more success followed. Recently, he released his latest album, 'Join Us', and has a small armada of singles which have been enjoying airplay locally such as 'Run Cow', 'Babylon You Doomed', 'Not Like Them and Those', 'Universal Struggle', 'Gideon Start Again' with Ancient Monarchy a.k.a Frisco Kid, and the popular 'Want a Natty' alongside Billboard chart-rider Sasha. The combination single, 'Want a Natty', has been doing very well, and the video for the song is in heavy rotation on local television and cable stations. A new medley video for the soon-to-released single, 'Name and Number' and the single, 'Baby Let's Go' will be introduced to the public soon as well.

Now, years later, Turbulence has built a house for his mother far from 'Hungry Town' but she refuses to move. He says he understands that she 'feels comfortable being there'.

"I still live close by to the town, but I had to move out to seek my fortunes. The people look to I and I to make it better. Many times, I am the one who sends their children to school, and help in several other ways; they are good people but I need to rise so that in the future, I can help those who need help," he said.

Last year, he wowed a jampacked Sumfest audience with a marquis performance right after the enigmatic Beres Hammond as he was still the opening act for Sizzla.

"After the first five minutes, mi just get mad and do my ting, and everybody was surprised that I could go so hard, I made my impression and this year, I have my own 25 minutes slot...things are looking up," he said.

"Ultimately, I see myself opening up a chain of community centres across Jamaica, each with its own studio so we can more adequately harness the talents of the inner-city youths in Jamaica. We have to get the youths positively engaged in something so that they will choose something other than crime and the gun. We have to give them hope," he said.

Turbulence is offering the same brand of 'hope' in his hometown, 'Hungry Town' where he has formed a group called 'Higher Trod' which consists of artistes like Jumbo Rass, Natty Paul, Black Warrior, Sonny Terrible, Mangaroo, Prince Jared, Mastablade, and I Star, all sons of the same community.

"You have to know yourself, and know your purpose so you can elevate yourself and make a positive impact on the world," he said.