Mon | Nov 19, 2018

Secrets to her strength

Published:Friday | October 6, 2017 | 12:00 AM
The cover of Etana's 2008 album, The Strong One.

Etana has held a firm grip on the reggae industry since her breakout hit Wrong Address in 2008, included on her debut album The Strong One that year. Also on that VP Records set were Warrior Love, Blessing (featuring Alborosie) and Roots.Since then, Etana has maintained a level of musical excellence that has allowed her to remain at the top of the industry. The strong one holds nothing back as she gave advice to up and coming talent as well as her wishes for young women of the beautiful island she calls home.

5 Questions With... Etana

1. What is Etana's secret to remaining relevant as an artiste and what advice do you have for young artistes who want a long lasting career?

Etana I work hard with a team of people who have my best interest at heart, and create music from the heart in collaboration with others who walk with a passion for music. My advice to those who want a long lasting career in music is to be smart from the beginning; find an affordable lawyer, don't be too quick to sign anything, learn the business as much as you can and work with people who have some knowledge in the business of music. Know that there is much to gain when the right song breaks and you never know which it will be, so guard your publishing. And last but not least, you have to love it, because you may make a lot right from the start or nothing in your first year or two and you may have to build your way up. If you don't love it, walk away.

2. What is your favourite thing about Jamaica and where is your favourite place to unwind and relax on the island?

Etana: My favorite thing about Jamaica is the strength and vigour in the people. No matter how hard it may get, joy and the will to make it is always present. I also enjoy the beauty of our culture, the food, hills, mountains, valley and the water. My favourite place to unwind is at home in the hills or by the river.

3. How do you balance family life with your career and what has been your most challenging thing in trying to strike that balance?

Etana: It's definitely not easy to balance family and music and at times I do feel like I'm struggling with balance. However, what keeps me focused is my passion for both and knowing that I can't do one without the other. The hardest part is leaving my family for a three month tour. Leaving is always hard.

4. If you could influence young women into doing one thing to help change the world, what would that be?

Etana: Self worth/self preservation. Too many women don't know their worth and throw themselves to anyone. If all women knew how valuable we all are to this world and how great our influence is on generations, our mannerism would be much different. We would all make better choices and men would just have to straighten up.

5. Everyone seems to be doing something to jump onto the fitness train. Is Etana into fitness and healthy living?

Etana: Yes I have to be. If I don't do everything to maintain or to improve my health, then that affects my personal and musical life.