Janet Silvera, Senior Gleaner Writer
Marion 'Lady Saw' Hall could easily have taken on the lead role in any of Tyler Perry's Madea-themed movies.
Saw was one 'Angry Black Woman' as she appeared onstage at Reggae Sumfest 2013 Dancehall Night. Offstage, she was like a beaten woman ready to turn her life over to Christ.
"This is my last performance on Reggae Sumfest, my last performance in the dancehall, I am going to do gospel music," Saw declared, hoping to convince herself and this writer that this time around she meant every word.
Refusing to do any interviews backstage, the woman who has changed the face of dancehall for women in this country said she was returning to the church.
"I am retiring because I hate the business. Dancehall too wicked. I am not loving it anymore, so I am going to be baptised."
This would be her second baptism, calling this one the last time.
"Renewing my vows with the Lord is going to be much better than what I am experiencing in the dancehall," she told The Gleaner, adding that her new role would mean getting many souls for God.
In the last six months, Lady Saw's life has been tumultuous. Her common-law husband John John, whom she has lived with for 17 years, allegedly cheated on her, resulting in the ending of a relationship that had become the fabric of the dancehall queen's existence.
Her situation has not got better, and even with the release of the chart-topping song Heels On, she has been having a war of words with her protégée, Macka Diamond, whose Dye Dye has been burning up the airwaves.
Qualifying that John John had nothing to do with her decision to return to the church, Lady Saw said last February she went to a worship centre in Florida and on the first night the holy ghost was about to take her over, but she denied it by leaving the premises. However, she was drawn back the following night, and for the next two to three days she knew her life was changing.
Not about John John
"It was not about what John John did to me, because I wasn't aware then about his relationship. I had an intuition, but no concrete evidence," she noted, adding that when you are with someone for 17 years, after a while you are able to decipher.
Her decision, she said, was spurred by the hatred being spewed in the dancehall.
"I hate the people who get up every day to tell lies on me," she argued, clarifying that she has never paid a disc jockey to play her music, "much less to say I am paying persons to block someone else's song."
The artiste has been accused of blocking Macka Diamond from performing on shows she is booked on, something she denies vehemently.
She said her age is now a problem, with her enemies criticising her for being in the dancehall for too long, stating it was now young people time.
"Did they tell Beres Hammond and Marcia Griffiths to leave the business?" she asked.
She feels she is being called by God, who has a hand in getting them to terrorise her and push her towards Him.
She also said God used John John to open her eyes. "God is a jealous God, I spent more time with him than God."
She is convinced she is being punished by her saviour.
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Lady SawA mean Lady Saw in the video -File
FileLady SawSheena Gayle The Queen of the Dancehall Lady Saw was in her element as she gave a brilliant performance at Reggae Sumfest.