What inspired you to first start making music? And how did you come to be in your current incarnation? Or if you prefer, a brief bio about you.
I have to say that music has just always been inside of me; it’s a creative force that was present ever since I was a child. It’s something I was born with. Unfortunately, it’s also something my parents weren’t fond of. I came from a very religious background, so I wasn’t able to pursue this passion until I left home. It wasn’t until I was in my 30s that I actually got into really writing and collaborating with different people and creatives.
Provide us with some info about your latest release…
Our latest release is called “Bounce” and the track basically touches on toxic relationships. These can be romantic relationships, but can also extend to your entire environment: all the people you surround yourself with and the habits that you’ve developed as a consequence.
The song is about following your heart and to take the stand to remove any toxic influences that you have in your circle that are potentially acting as a block that is stopping you from achieving your purpose.
Which ones would you consider your main influences both music-wise & non-music-wise?
I’m originally from Jamaica, and I grew up in a pretty dysfunctional home, so I was really looking for characters who gave out positive messages that I could relate to. So I ended up being influenced by strong black forces like Sidney Portiere, Mohammed Ali, Martin Luther King Jr, Maya Angelou, Angela Davis, Oprah Winfrey, Toni Morrison, Nelson Mandela and so forth.
Music wise: Just to name a few, Jill Scott, DeAngelo, Prince, Rachelle Ferrell, Quincy Jones, Luther Vandross, Marvin Gaye, Al Green, Chaka Khan, Busta Rhymes, Grace Jones and the Funkadelics.
In what way does your sound differ from the rest genre-related artists/bands and why should we listen to your music? In other words, how would you describe your sound?
What makes my music different from the rest is that it’s what I’m feeling in that particular moment, and my feelings are really unpredictable. If you listen to more than one track, you’ll see that OMG Collective is genre-bending, so it’s difficult to anticipate what you’ll get. It also means that the music created is perfect for just about any kind of mood people can find themselves in.
Please name your 3 desert islands albums, movies & books…
1. Jill Scott – Who is Jill Scott? Words and Sounds Vol 1.
2. Michael Jackson – Off the Wall
3. Pat Metheny – Off Ramp
1. Black Panther
2. The Color Purple
1. Nelson Mandela – Long Walk to Freedom
2. Michelle Obama – Becoming
3. James Baldwin – The Fire Next Time
Do you prefer studio or performing live and why?
This is a tricky one. I love performing because I find that I totally let go and don’t worry about anything. Performing live is where I get to communicate with the audience. On the other hand, while in the studio, I tend to focus on every little thing. What is the mic picking up? How does this sound? I can get pretty microscopic and worrying about the track being perfect. It’s definitely fun in the studio, but I prefer live performances.
Is there any funny-unique story you would like to share with us, always in relation to your music ‘career’?
I always remember how scared I was when I first started this journey. Prior to my grandmother’s death, I promised her that I would fulfill my dream. So I did. I was working security at the time at Ronnie Scott’s in London and I mustered up the courage to ask the Artist Director there if I could perform, and surprisingly he said yes.
When he asked when I could do it, I said to give me 4 months. And in those 4 months, I used to go on the stage and pretend that I was doing surveillance. I’d act as if I was looking around for stuff, but I’d make sure to turn around and look at the crowd. Each time I did, my stomach would just drop and I’d feel like I wanted to throw up. After the crowd would leave, I’d go back up and pretend they were there… all to get my confidence up. I was so incredibly nervous, but thanks to that practice, now I can do it easily!
Which track of your own would you point out as the most unique and why?
My most unique single would be a track that’s going to come out next year. I’m really excited about it because of the messaging above everything. It’s about finding myself in a pretty special situation and place in life that most people don’t get the opportunity to be in. There are a million and one songs about heartbreak for instance, but songs about this topic? Very few probably.
Would you like to share with our readers your future plans?
A lot of fresh releases! The plan is to produce 4 new singles next year and just to continue the momentum flowing.
Free question!!! (Ask yourself a question) you wish to answer and haven’t been given the opportunity…
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten?
The best piece of advice I’ve ever gotten is to stay true to you and to develop a thick skin. If you know what you’re about and believe in what you do, you’ll accomplish anything. If you don’t, you’ll be forever seeking validation from others and that’s just going to continue to break you down. So, believe in yourself and in your purpose, that’s your driving force.
Curated by: Christos Doukakis
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