Harold George Belafonte, Jr. (born March 1, 1927 in Harlem, New York, United States) is an American musician, actor and social activist. One of the most successful American musicians in history, he was dubbed the "King of Calypso" for popularizing the Caribbean musical style. Throughout his career he has been an advocate for civil rights and humanitarian causes. In recent years he has been a vocal critic of the policies of the Bush administration.
From 1935 to 1939 he lived with his mother in the village of Aboukir in her native country of Jamaica. When he returned to New York he attended George Washington High School after which he joined the Navy and served during World War II. At the end of the 1940s he took classes in acting and subsequently received a Tony Award for his participation in John Murray Anderson's Almanac. He starred in several films during the 1950s. These include the all black cast Carmen Jones and the then controversial Island in the Sun, for which he wrote and sang the title song.