Curtis Campbell, Gleaner Writer
Up-and-coming dancehall/reggae artiste Lamon 'Libran' Cousins, is begging the powerhouses in the music industry to give more exposure to young acts.
According to the up-and-comer, recording artistes hoping to make it to the top are at a huge disadvantage when compared to artistes in different parts of the world.
The artiste points out that young acts are plagued with a lack of financial backing, poor recording and little or no promotion. He also believes that Jamaica possesses the talent to fill the gap created by the absence of artistes like Bob Marley, Vybz Kartel, Peter Tosh, Dennis Brown, and other influential individuals, but that talent is yet to be exposed properly.
"As a young artiste wi feel the pressure, and a nuh suh it must go. The music industry should be welcoming young artistes to bring new life to the genres, and also to carry on the work. But inna Jamaica, that does not seem to be the case, it seems to be about keeping the young artistes out. There are a few who support young talent and kudos to them, but the majority don't give us the time of the day," Libran said.
The hip-hop music industry exposes and adds several new acts to its roster on a yearly basis. Since last year alone, the hip-hop community saw the rise of Meek Mill, ASAP Rocky, 2 Chains, Kendrick Lamar, Hopsin, Iggy Azalea, Big Sean and Ca$h Out, among others.
Libran believes Jamaica should have exposed as many.
WHY NO EXPOSURE?
"In Jamaica, only Chronixx, Omi and Tommy Lee Sparta get some good promotion so far fi last year. And as a place with so much talent, we should have more young artistes coming through the pipeline to help develop the music and nuh mek di thing look stagnant, like the young artistes not good enough to carry on the banner. We record far more than the hip-hop artistes. Dem duh one album per year and with our catalogue we can release at least three albums per year, no exaggeration. Suh why wi young artistes dem cyah get exposure?" Libran pondered.
The artiste also said Jamaican stage shows were using the same acts from the '90s to close shows. He believes this is testimony to the fact that the music industry has failed to expose talent to match the needs of the market.
"The other day, a big show like Sting was in trouble after Bounty Killer pull out and there was no immediate person in his class to fill the gap, and that should not have to be. We have too much talent here, but because dem nah buss di youth dem, dem nuh know what wi have to offer. You can imagine from way back till now if Ninja Man nah clash, nobody is there?," he continued.
"Mi a beg unno give the young artistes a chance fi shine, man; for the sake of the music, help wi out. The youth a di future, the legend dem a di root and we are the branches and the two of us go together, suh pay more attention to the youths, mi a beg unno," Libran said.
Libran is also promoting a brand new single titled Nowadays, produced by Jason Dacres on the World Medz Rhythm.
Nowadays highlights aspects of the Jamaican society and situations faced by many on a daily basis.
According to Libran, the concept of the song was inspired by the hardship and struggles he experienced during his quest to make it in the music industry.
The song is now available on iTunes and other leading digital music outlets and is distributed by 21st Hapilos Digital Distribution. Libran also has a collaboration with Chico called Sexy Body.
"I especially want to thank Ally of Classic Super Shop and my management and promotional team, and for the rest of 2013, I hope to reach that elusive pinnacle in the music industry," he said.