4 years ago Jamaican entertainer Ishawna did her unofficial rendition of Ed Sheeran’s “Shape Of You” causing much uproar in the dancehall community from Bounty Killer and others. Now Sheeran himself in an interview on Qmusic Nederland made comments on how he would sing her version many times.
Sheeran said, “what I like about Shape Of You is anywhere I go in the world people know that song and there are so many remixes of it, I was in the Caribbean, and I heard like a totally different song, It is really really filthy, but she is just singing about her man going down on her”.
A happy Sheeran then went on to sing the song word for word then said, “I have listened to it so many times when she says ‘if you want head my cute you haffi suck this” he boasted.
Sheeran’s approval of the unofficial remix comes after Ishawna suffered much criticism in her island of Jamaica from other artist who do not share here sentiments. As the song grew in popularity ishawna drew much opposition in the industry and she was also unable to upload the song due to lack of clearance.
She posted the ordeal on her Instagram post in response to Sheeran’s endorsement.
“When I recorded Equal Rights it was never meant to be a “real” song. I was just so in love with Ed Sheeran song and the riddim just moved me in a way I couldn’t explain. I’ve always wanted to touch on the topic and I just knew it was time. The song went viral immediately, yet it wasn’t on any streaming platforms. At that point I didn’t have any clearance to use the track and I thought. Ed Sheeran would never give me the clearance because I’m an independent artist and i had no major label behind me to reach out to his team. I ended up putting out the song on a brand new riddim to avoid any legal issues.(If you check iTunes, Spotify etc you will see that it’s a different version)”
Previously WAP Rapper Cardi B endorsed Ishawna’s verse by calling it “too nasty” in a compliment in her Instagram story.
However among some of her peers in Jamaica, the song was considered taboo in dancehall and lyrics caused discomfort to some, mostly males in the industry.
One artists at the time, Prince Pin, enquired: “How some man so silent and when man talk dem say we violent?” in the intro to his song. His lyrics went on to lash out for the “real Jamaican dem” in a distasteful banter.
Legendary dancehall figure Bounty Killer made a post threatening Ishawna not to sing her song at a concert they were both billed to perform.
Ishawna responded with defiance and said, “Bring it on Rodney” on her Instagram post. She went on to perform the song in his presence at the event in Portland Jamaica to massive approval from the crowd.
During his performance at the show Bounty Killer said, “Weh the clean mouth gal dem deh now, me heard some a unuh a sing some sumn” a clear jab at her.
Other artists refused to use the same mic as Ishawna whenever she was booked for a show.
Sheeran himself, unconcerned about “real Jamaican men” and dancehall artist’s sexual practices sang the song word for word during his interview.
Ishawna expressed heartfelt gratitude to Ed and her fans. She concluded on her Instagram post:
Fast forward 4 years later Ed Sheeran is singing my song Equal Rights word for word saying it’s his favorite.😭🔥🔥🔥🔥I say that to say this, NEVER ever let FEAR stop you from pursuing your dreams. I remember all that I went through and I’m STILL going through simply because I express MYSELF doing what I love…music!
Equal Rights is one of, if not THE MOST ICONIC SONGS OF THIS GENERATION PERIODT!!! 🔥🔥🔥
#NO official release on streaming platforms
#NO big budget
#NO distribution deal
#NO major record label
#NO fake views/streams
Just authentic love💕 Now that’s Legendary😉👑☺️
Thank you so much @teddysphotos @qmusicnl 🙏🏽😁And thanks to my true fans and loyal supporters….I LOVE THIS FOR US