Chaka Demus to revive the legacy left by Jamaica's musical forefathers Image

by Biko Kennedy

As veteran Reggae/Dancehall artiste Chaka Demus preps his upcoming solo album, The Second Coming of Chaka Demus, he aims to do one thing… to revive the legacy left by Jamaica's musical forefathers.

The upcoming album is set to include hints of Ska, Reggae, Dancehall, Mento and Rocksteady over its 12-track playlist which have already raised a few intrigued eyebrows from persons who have heard some of the project.

"It's been a long time since an album like this has been produced and mi and Pliers have a collaboration album coming up which maintains the same diverse and international standard. So a lot of work going on right now; I live in the studio," explains Demus to The Gleaner.

Chaka Demus, whose real name is John Taylor, intimates that he recorded the album at his home studio in Edgewater, St. Catherine where his Bright Star Productions company is based but is currently negotiating with major international record label Sony Music Group. Having worked with major labels like Island Records and Universal Music Group in the past, the 'Murder She Wrote' deejay hopes to endorse his product through another major company in an attempt rewrite history.

"The advantage of working with a major label is that you get a wider distribution all over the world and your albums will be in the same store with people of high calibre like Nicki Minaj and other people," he said.

Though a number of Reggae/Dancehall acts have lashed out against major labels taking advantage of their artistry, Demus sees it as a case where an artiste basically needs to be disciplined and not pigheaded about their approach with the labels.

"Your work has to be of an international standard. As for me, I have my name out there already, so they will grab my work and push it, but if it's a little young artiste it might be harder for him to get partnership with a major label. Labels are looking forward to working with people who are mannerable, easy to work with, and not about the hype," Chaka Demus said.

Despite not having a recent hit song on the charts, Chaka Demus and Pliers (Everton Bonner) have been touring and putting together a collaborative effort which will be released after Chaka Demus' solo project.

In more recent times the duo made its long-awaited return to the 2013 Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival as well as have been the inspiration for the newly released single 'Freaks' by American rappers French Montana and Nicki Minaj to which Demus explains is "a joy that they want to do over our song because a lot of people do songs and never get recognition for it so this is really good. When yuh have people recognise you as legend and want to use your work, it's very good because they never had to do it."

But Demus stands confident that he still possesses the ability to make platinum records, which is one of the main appeals to any record label; how well can an artiste sell records.

"I can go back to the same bar that was set with Murder She Wrote. All we need is the people to back us, because is promotions do it. A lot of Jamaican artistes have the talent to sell diamond records, but we can't do that without the right backing. If we get the backing the thing shot weh."

"Chris Blackwell spent some money on Bob Marley and it worked, dem spend some money on Shabba and it worked, and dem spend some money on Shaggy and it worked. Suh if di youth dem get promotion it dun," explains the artiste.

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