Written by: Overtime Media
Dancehall superstar, Sean Paul has taken notice of the “Trinibad” dancehall movement and is advising the local acts to balance their lyrical content and song topics. Speaking to Overtime Media this week about his new album entitled LiveNLivin, the Grammy Award-winner said the title of this album released on March 12 is a positive affirmation – both for himself and the dancehall genre. He said:
“The album is called Live N Livin to reaffirm that I am alive and living – it’s a positive affirmation to anyone that’s listening to realise that I understand this and also to reaffirm that dancehall music itself is live and living – even in different territories such as the Trinibads and these places. I have heard Prince Swanny and dem boy dey.”
Asked for his opinion on the Trinibad movement, Sean Paul saluted local acts like “Prince Swanny”, “Jahllano” and others for keeping dancehall music alive and telling the stories of life in Trinidad. However, in light of the deaths of several of these local acts over the past year, he also advised the young singers to “maintain ah balance” and to tell all sides of their stories. He said:
“This music is to tell people what’s going on in our lives and I encourage people to talk the truth every time. A lot of time now, we kinda embellishing or over-exaggerating or over glorifying a violent type of lifestyle like it is the realist thing – like we get up every morning and drink tea and buss gun inna boy head – and that ain’t true, or else there would be none of us left on earth. Scene?”
“So, that’s my only thing with the badness: meh just wanna big up everybody who does music and says yes, you must reflect the badness that is in society, cause yeah, because that is what the music is for, but also tell the real story. Tell the story when you shoot somebody and have to go hide inna hill and you can’t see your baby mother nor your baby for months, yuh understand? Tell the story when police come to look for you and you frighten and you paro (paranoid) because you can’t even trust your best friend cause them will sell you out cause them know what yuh do. So tell that story too, not just the ones where you have the baddest thing and no boy can’t test. Cause if they test I. there’s pure problems and violence!”
Born Sean Paul Ryan Francis Henriques in 1973, to mixed parentage in Jamaica (his parents had Portuguese, Chinese, and Jamaican forebears), “Sean Paul” was an excellent swimmer who also played water polo and later represented the Jamaican national team in the latter. After making a name for himself on the regional dancehall circuit, he broke into the global mainstream in the early 2000s with pop-friendly party jams like “Get Busy” from his Grammy-winning Dutty Rock album, plus the chart-topping smash “Temperature”.
His latest album LiveNLiving was released on March 12 and features traditional dancehall production with a stellar cast of collaborators such as: Buju Banton, Damian Marley, Mavado, Busy Signal, Suku Ward, Serani, Govana, Intence, Masicka, Skillibeng, Quash, Chi Ching Ching, Jesse Royal, Sutu Bless, Luga Man and Rassa Joy. The father of two is also scheduled to release another album later this year (with more international collaborations) entitled Scorcha and will host his first live streaming concert for 2021 on May 8 from Jamaica.
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