John Holt’s grandson ready to chart his own course
Scwayne Holt, grandson of the late John Holt, says he is well aware of the musical shoes he will have to fill, and while he is ready to carry on the family legacy, he is keen on doing, things his own way.
The 27-year-old who goes by the stage name Bamm Holt, says that while his last name opens doors in the industry, he is not looking for a free pass. “I would feel pressure not coming from that kind of family and having to try come up out of nowhere. Being born into a musical family is a blessing to me. I got a step ahead, a one foot forward and I consider that headstart a blessing,” he said. “But, I’m not looking a free pass in music. I want to make my own way. While I’m not going to take that last name out of the mix, I’m not gonna make it the main focus.”
“Being the grandson of someone like John Holt, everybody has their own ideas of how you should look, how you should sound. Everybody is thinking that because I’m his grandson, I’m going to be doing reggae music or singing rock steady. I mix reggae with hip hop, and people hear that, and it’s kinda hard for them to accept it. But that is me, and that is who I will bring to the people. I am my own person. I will be keeping my grandfather’s legacy alive, but I will have my own,” he continued.
The entertainer told The Gleaner that although his mind is set on having a serious career, 10 years ago, he wasn’t actively pursuing music. “I been doing music for over 10 years now, but I didn’t really start taking it serious until about five years ago. For the first five of those 10 years, I was practising. I was trying to find my own sound, and I finally found it,” he said. “I am ready now to go all out, and I believe I have what it takes to really go far in this industry.”
Holt is currently promoting the track Money Problems. He believes the song has potential to attract the attention he needs to get people in tune with his music. Listing his grandfather among his biggest inspirations, the entertainer hopes to make him proud. “His influence to this day, even though he’s not here, is very much present. I feel like he’d be talking to me sometimes. I really want to make him proud.”
John Kenneth Holt came to prominence as lead singer of the group The Paragons before leaving to focus on his solo career in the 1970s. His song Stick by Me was, perhaps, Holt’s biggest success, and in 1972, it went on to become the biggest-selling Jamaican record for that year. He passed away in October 2014 after battling ill health for some time.