An up-and-coming New York-based Guyanese artiste Curt “Ceejay” Johnson was gunned down early this morning while leaving a party in New Jersey.
Details surrounding the shooting are sketchy, but it is suspected that robbery might have been a motive. There are reports that he was shot at least seven times.
As news of his death spread across social media, other Guyanese musicians and entertainers expressed their shock and sympathy, remembering “Ceejay” as a lover of good music and a great performer.
Guyanese reggae singer and songwriter, Fojo said Ceejay will forever be remembered. He said the death has hit him hard since the two met recently to discuss some collaborative work.
“You said you wanna do a soca song but only wanna do it with me. I told you I will come to your studio and we will work it out. Now for me to typing gone too soon, I’m in tears bro”, Fojo wrote on his Facebook page.
Another Guyanese artiste, Gaddiel Henry reflected on one of the latest releases from Ceejay, a song titled “Goodbye”. He said he never realized that the young singer was really saying goodbye to everyone in his last song.
Local rapper Esan Benzy shared on his Facebook page that the singer’s death has left him in disbelief. “Great Artiste with a great soul. It was a pleasure working with you my brother and we got the opportunity to share that conversation and God knows his doings”, Benzy stated.
Atlanta-based, Guyanese designer Shawn McAllister of Demroc Clothing, fought back tears as he spoke about the friendship he shared with the murdered singer. He said Ceejay was very supportive of his clothing line and when the two first met, the singer bought several of his pieces to wear in a music video. He said he respected that act by the artiste and still can’t believe he is gone.
Ceejay was listed among the group of Guyanese singers to perform at the Guyana Day celebrations in New York in August.
In a Guyana Chronicle feature a year ago, Ceejay spoke about his love for music and representing Guyana on the international stage. He migrated to the US in 2002 and got involved in the music industry almost immediately, launching his own record label and a number of singles over the years.
He had explained that he launched that record label to give other musicians a chance to showcase their hidden talent and be seen and heard in a crowded music market.
Investigations into his death are ongoing.