One part reggae revivalist, one part roots influenced and all parts mega, mega talented, Jamaican singer Protoje has certainly been going all the way up ever since he hit the scene in 2010.
First with his well received debut set, The Seven Year Itch, and then with a steady stream of singles and cuts including “Who Knows,” “Rasta Love” and “Kingston Be Wise,” all of which will most likely be featured when Protoje takes the stage spotlight over at Coda later tonight.
But before he owns our-first-night-of-summer live music lives (the timing couldn’t be more perfect), he was gracious enough to stop by Philly Mixtape for a little music tea, where he broke mugs about his humble beginnings, artistic influences and what it really takes to make it in this crazy music business.
Check it out and then of course…dance.
First up, how’s everything going these days? How’s the weather in Jamaica right now? Although I’m sure I just answered my own question… I’m awesome. [It’s] better than where you are, probably!
How did you get your start in music? I started writing music [at an early age], came to Kingston and started on the sound systems and mics and just performed by way into the business through there.
Shout out some of your artistic influences…. Jay Z, Ini Kamoze, Damon Marley
Now, you just mentioned Jay. Any particular albums or tracks by the Hov that you absolutely live for? My favorite Jay album is The Blueprint and then Reasonable Doubt comes second. I love feeling it on Reasonable Doubt and….everything from BluePrint.
Have you been to Philly before? Get a chance to grab a cheesesteak? Yeah, I’ve been there when I was younger and I played there last year. I’m vegetarian, but I have had a Vegan Philly cheese steak before. Which I’m sure isn’t the same but that’s as close as I can get to it!
Any words of advice for any aspiring performer out there? It’s very hard to make something of yourself and anything you do is going to be a challenge. You have to stay focused in it, even with the hardships.