In 2020, Jahblend released his first single “Black on Black”. Since then he’s gone on to make significant strides in the reggae & dancehall music scene. Earning charting positions and recognitions on DSPs. He speaks with us on journey into the industry so far.
Good evening Jahblend. Welcome to MaxChat, how’re you feeling tonight?
Bless up! Me feeling IRIE!
No better feeling than that. Let’s start from the beginning, so what was it about Reggae/dancehall music that you were so drawn to growing up that made you know you’d want to make a career out of it?
The genre was like the Soundtrack to my childhood. My parents loved the music and made sure we heard it. Back then ghettos around me slammed it on repeat made me love the genre.
I decided to make a career out of it because it’s a timeless genre and I want to still be here years after I’m gone.
And you’re doing amazing with it. Although you’ve only released one EP (Compos Mentis), you’ve been making music for many years now. What’s been the biggest thing you’ve grown to know about yourself in the process?
I’ve leant that I can be very patient, a skill I’ll say I learnt over time too.
That’s interesting. The official video for your 2021 single, “Jah Guide Me” has amassed over 100k views on YouTube. Congratulations on that. Walk us through what inspired the record, it’s video and how you were feeling at the time. What made you decide to shoot that video in Ghana?
Thank you. I made the song during the lockdown 2020, I was feeling grateful for all I had at that moment and how far I felt I had come, against all odds it had to be God’s guidance.
We knew we had a message in the song and agreed we needed to show it and make my listeners feel the message on some other level. Fortunately I and my team were in Ghana at the time (a very spiritually endowed place), so there was no better place to shoot, no better lens to tell the story than the divinely planned.
Amazing. You’ve already had a lot of success so far. Being a Top 200 Shazam Charting Artiste in Seychelles, featuring on Top 10 Apple Music Reggae Song & Top Album Charts in over 17 countries. What do these accomplishments mean to you as you look at your overall career?
I see them as pointers, also they confirm everything I’ve said in the past. I believe if I can do them now then I’ll do even more, no limits. I’m grateful for them and they are steps in the very long ladder of my goals.
You are definitely achieving greater goals. Now being a reggae/dancehall artiste in a country where Afrobeats is the predominant genre requires a lot of work to gain recognition. How have you been able to make it work? Do you feel you can make a significant impact with dancehall music in Nigeria widely?
I’m grateful for my type of mentality and the type of people I have around me. I realized it’s all about consistency and so I keep on going. I feel like I’m already making an impact with dancehall and the plan is to take it to the world.
Dancehall to the world! We love that! Back in November 2021, you had shared your grievances on social media concerning the misrepresentation of Reggae and Dancehall music at the MOBO Awards. Can you shed more light into this?
Well everybody knows Reggae is different from Dancehall, so a reggae award category should be different from a dancehall award category. Creating only a reggae category available and nominating more dancehall artiste than true reggae artistes means both genres suffer.
That’s true. Tell us, If you could only listen to (5) artists for the rest of your life, who would they be?
Jahblend: Damien marley, Whitney Houston, Popcaan, Burna boy, Jahblend, Chronixx.
Wow, That’s a heavy list. Supposing you needed to drop one person to keep it at 5. Who will you drop?
Jahblend: Jahblend! Haha!!
Haha! So we’ve seen you deliver outstanding performances at events and shows. Tell us, If you had the ability to headline any music festival or musical event – which would be a dream for you to perform at?
It has to be a Jahfire Festival. I’ll be mad happy to perform at the big festivals but what I want to do with the live aspect of my music, something generations will speak of.
We’d love that. Finally, walking into 2022 you’re yet to release any song but we believe you’ve been working underground. How can you say the way you approach/create/think of music changed since your last release? Also, what can fans expect from you for the rest of 2022?
Well my voice got better, been doing a lot of songwriting gigs lately so that has helped improved the passing messages in songs aspect, apart from that jahfire still burns the same way. This year expect collaborations, international and local ones. Just great music all year!
Thank you for joining us tonight. We appreciate you for finding time to have this interesting conversation with us. We wish you the best in your future musical endeavors, while we anticipate new music from you soon. Have a lovely night!
This Interview was carried out and written by Emmanuel Harrison. Powered by Maxtreme HQ