Interview with ...
Your artist name Aaron was given to you by your brother Garnet. Is it a reference to the lyrics of his song "The Rod" ("Music is the voice of his brother Aaron") inspired by the chapter on the exodus in the Bible ?
Yes, it is inspired by the chapter on the exodus in the Bible. Garnet has often said that I have to come and help him with the work as he cannot do it alone.
You recorded your first single "Show I the Way" (for Talent Corporation label) composed by your brother Garnet one year after his death. When did you decide to lead a professional career ?
I decided to go professional when the voice of my brother Garnet kept haunting me saying my name is Aaron, and he cannot do this alone.
Your song "Right Path" on the Lala Bella riddim recorded for Tony Rebel's Flames label on Penthouse studio was one of your first hits. Did you realise when you heard the riddim for the first time that it would become one of the biggest riddims of the 90s ?
First time I heard the Lala Bella riddim, I knew it was a hit. I decided I wasn’t gonna let this riddim go out without me. The song "Right Path" was written by a good friend Andre Francis for Garnet to record. Garnet never got around to recording the song as he shed flesh that same year. I decided to record this song on the Lala Bella riddim.
You write many cultural lyrics. Where do you find inspiration ?
My inspiration comes from the most high, Haile Selassie the 1st, which my mediation is strong towards when sitting to write to see the world.
You recorded your first song for Donovan Germain's Penthouse label in 1996. How did you get connected ?
I’ve been going to Penthouse studio from early days with Garnet, and seeing Germain as one of the biggest producers in Jamaica. It was a honor to record for him.
Could you tell us about this song "Bless Me Oh Jah", in honour of your brother Garnet ?
"Bless Me Oh Jah" was a comfort seeker, looking for answers of why my brother shed flesh. I turned to the bible for answers. When writing the song it was simple re-tracking my trail of how and why my brother was taken from us.
Your second single for Penthouse "Trust Me" was recorded on the Forever Loving Jah riddim in 2001. Can you tell us more about it ?
"Trust Me" was written out of anger, anger of all the manipulation and what our fore fathers have been through in slavery days. This manipulation and lies are still haunting us today, by the polititians, and the bosses who demand hard work, and not willing to pay.
Why you did not record any more for Germain since ?
I have actually recorded several songs with Donovan Germain, and actually look forward to doing more work with him in the near future.
You recorded for many labels. What is Donovan Germain's singularity comparing to other producers ?
Donovan, to me, is a perfectionist. Easy going, and hard to please. If a song is not properly written or composed, he won’t be voicing with you. He is a producer who is very honest and straight forward. If he does not like something he won’t hesitate to say it. That is what makes him such a successful producer.
Talk us about your debut album "Bless I Oh Jah" produced by Culture Shock in 1999. How was this project born ?
In 1995, I was recommended by Everton Blender to the promoter Keith Simmonds of Culture Shocks Festival in Bermuda. We linked up and immediately after my performance, we began talks of putting together an album. "Bless I Oh Jah" was born some years later, produced by Mikey Chung and me.
You often sing songs of your brother Garnet during your shows. Which one is your favorite ?
I can never have a favorite amongst all of Garnet songs, they each mean something special to me, and to all his fans as well.
Your songs have evolved since your debut. You’ve adopt a more soulful side. Why this change ?
Change came about, as change is necessary in reaching your full potential, whether musical or otherwise. In this case, change came about as singles are released based on the opinion of each producer. Producers choose what they think would be best at the time of the release of a particular riddim or song.
To conclude, what are your plans ? I've heard an album is due to be out soon.
My plan is to continue singing positive, conscious music to the people. Music is Love, Music is Life, Music is Powerful. As Garnet said “Music is the voice of his brother Aaron, preaching and comforting at the Father's command”.
DISCOGRAPHY ON PENTHOUSE RECORDS : |
- Bless Me Oh Jah (1996 - Single Parent riddim)
- Trust Me (2001 - Forever Loving Jah riddim)
listen to these singles :