Jamaica’s King Mas dares local artistes

BY PRECIOUS CHIDA

UNITED STATES-BASED Jamaican reggae artiste Glenford “King Mas” Prospere (pictured) yesterday said it was important for managers of local musicians to secure spots on international streaming platforms so that they can get revenue for their artistes.

King Mas, who is on a 100-day tour of Africa to document his experience and challenge the misinformation by Western media, told NewsDay Life & Style yesterday that although local music was on track, there was need to tie up a few loose ends.

“I think that the Zimbabwean music industry is on the right track. One potential improvement is for artiste management teams to secure proper distribution on international streaming platforms to ensure that revenue from these sources of income gets to the artistes,” he said.

King Mas — who has featured some of the top musicians who include Busy Signal, Jah Cure and Capleton — said local artistes should also be innovative by incorporating live instruments as that would add a distinctive flavour, which would give their music a cutting edge.

He said the artistes could consider fine-tuning their craft by becoming versatile in playing instruments.

“It’s important for the artistes to be innovative and take their craft to higher levels. Learning to play live instruments and incorporating them into their songs will add a distinct flavour to their sound and separate them from other artistes,” he said.

“The helmet vibe is a major part of the culture, but it will only take artistes or producers so far on the international scene.”

During his stint in the country, King Mas recorded six songs with various artistes, including Tocky Vibes, Guspy Warrior, Dadza D and Sharon Rue.

Married to a Zimbabwean woman Mirirai Munemo, King Mas said he has been exposed to plenty of Zimbabwean artistes over the years whom he thinks have a diverse array of talents which are of world-class quality.

Meanwhile, the musician said his tour of Africa would give him a better appreciation of the lived experiences in Africa and he would use it to counteract the negative portrayals in Western media.

“The Western media tends to emphasise the worst aspects of life in Africa, but there is a lot of love, life, and positive movement here and I want to share that narrative with those who may not be able to make the journey for themselves,” he said.

Having been in the country since November 2, King Mas said he would be flying to Kenya today and was excited by the opportunities to reconnect with his ancestral land.

He described his experiences in Africa so far as “refreshing” and particularly cited the people, the food and the music.

The musician has three albums under his belt — One Wish, Rasta Evolution and Crown.

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