b. Jamaica, West Indies. Kelly worked with Donovan Germain in the late 80s, and was employed as the resident engineer at the Penthouse studio in Slipe Road, Kingston, Jamaica. In 1990, he was introduced to Buju Banton, and together they wrote many of the songs that helped to earn the DJ an award as the Most Exciting Newcomer Of 1991. Kelly continued to work at Penthouse while he set up his own Madhouse label, which was eventually launched with Buju Banton’s ‘Big It Up’, featured on the DJ’s Penthouse debut Mr. Mention. Kelly is widely regarded as an innovator, contriving distinctive rhythms including the ‘Pepperseed’, ‘Joyride’, ‘Arab’, ‘Stink’ and ‘Medicine’. He worked with many top performers in the 90s, including Beenie Man (‘Old Dawg’ and ‘Slam’), Frisco Kid (‘Rubbers’), Lady Saw (‘Sycamore Tree’) and Nadine Sutherland with Terror Fabulous (‘Action’).
In 1997, Kelly embarked on an adventurous musical project known as Alias, electing to avoid any media hype; he refused to be photographed and formed a co-operative with Wayne Wonder, Frisco Kid, Spragga Benz, Alley Cat, Baby Cham, Textra and Mr. Easy. Working on a totally non-hierarchical basis, the enterprise featured Kelly as producer, writer, musician and even performing as a DJ (hiding behind an alias). He courted controversy when he produced Beenie Man’s ‘Nuff Slam’ jingle to promote a new condom known as ‘the Slam’. The sheath’s packaging featured Carlene (The Dancehall Queen) in an alluring pose and the proclamation ‘Slam Country’ over the Jamaican flag, which led to protests in Gordon House.
In the new millennium, Kelly’s engineering and production credits have included work with Elephant Man and Akon. He also continued working with Buju Banton, Lady Saw, Spragga Benz, Beenie Man and Baby Cham, most notably on the latter’s US breakthrough Ghetto Story.