Dancehall superstar Sean Paul began scoring hit singles in Jamaica in 1996 and steadily attracted international attention thereafter, eventually breaking into the pop mainstream in 2002 with Dutty Rock. Born Sean Paul Henriques on January 8, 1973, the multi-ethnic Paul (his parents had Portuguese, Chinese, and Jamaican forebears) grew up comfortably in St. Andrew, Jamaica, his mother a renowned painter. He was a skilled athlete, excelling in swimming and especially water polo, playing for the Jamaican national team in the latter. Although his education was enough to land him a prosperous career, dancehall music remained Paul's first love, particularly crafting rhythm tracks. He became a DJ after he began writing his own songs, patterning his style largely after Super Cat and finding a mentor in Don Yute; he also found contacts in several members of the reggae-pop band Third World in 1993, which helped open up business connections.