Davis was born in the Waterhouse district of Kingston in 1973. He was involved in the music industry from a young age, starting toasting at the age of five, and was encouraged by his uncle Sydney Wolf, who played drums for Jimmy Cliff.
His debut album, The Invincible Beenie Man: The Ten Year Old DJ Wonder was produced by Bunny Lee and released in 1983, his first hit single following the same year with the Winston Holness-produced “Over the Sea”. In 1984 Beenie Man recorded some material with Barrington Levy (released ten years later), but his music career was put on hold while he finished school, and spent time traveling to the United Kingdom, United States, and Canada. Beenie Man continued performing and honed his craft beside the then dominant dancehall figures including Ninjaman, Admiral Bailey and Shabba Ranks. He found his artistic home at the Shocking Vibes studio where he continued to record singles with only moderate success in the early 1990s. His career gained momentum after a performance at the Reggae Sunsplash festival in 1992, and a rivalry with Bounty Killer began the following year after Beenie Man’s “people dead” catchphrase was appropriated by the other deejay.
The rivalry was captured on the 1994 album Guns Out, with the two artists settling the feud with a sound clash. Beenie Man had his first number one single in Jamaica in 1993 with “Matie”, and he won the DJ of the Year Award the same year, the first of eight consecutive awards. In 2002, he had a sizeable hit with a duet with Janet Jackson called “Feel It Boy”, but his biggest break in America came in early 2004 with the release of a remix of “Dude”, featuring guest vocals by fellow Jamaican Ms. Thing, as well as rhymes by Shawnna. He thus cemented his fan base on both sides of the Atlantic. He had hits in the UK in 1998 with “Who am I” (#10), in 2003 with “Street Life” (#13) and “Feel It Boy” (UK #9), a duet with Janet Jackson, and in 2004 with “Dude” (#7) and “King of the Dancehall” (#14). He was also a judge for the 6th annual Independent Music Awards to support independent artists’ careers. In April 2008 it was announced that Beenie Man was to co-write and star in the film Kingston. In April 2009, Beenie Man signed with Brook land Entertainment, a new record label formed by Eric Nicks and The Track masters.