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Interview: Fire Pashon

Interview: Fire Pashon

Interview: Fire Pashon

By on - 5 comments

"The advantage of it is that I have a Father who has set a high standard in the world as one of the greatest Reggae artists"

Sampler

There should be no corner of the entire Reggae listening world where the name Sugar Minott is foreign. The legendary sweet voiced Jamaican singer has been thrilling audiences across the globe for the better part of four decades and in doing so, has seen his popularity continue to grow and grow. So popular and well regarded is Sugar Minott, in fact, that his name alone would more than enough to pave the way for any new artist he would bring forth, as just as he is well known for being an artist himself, Sugar Minott's storied Youthman Promotion Sound has helped to give many a very talented artist their starts. However, it's safe to say that in the case of Fire Pashon (aka Pashon Minott), she is by far his personal favourite. Although she doesn't shy away from comparisons to her Father, the young and impressive artist is on her way to establishing her own name in the music as well as creating and taking her own path. Fire Pashon recently spoke with UnitedReggae.com on where she's been, where she is, where she's headed (including her forthcoming debut album) and what it's like being the daughter of a legend.

Being the offspring of a legend as you are is something that can both help someone with added exposure, but also hurt with unfair expectations and you seem to be an artist who has accepted and ran with that situation - Touring with your Father - But at the same time you ultimately didn't name yourself something which was immediately discernible as being related to Sugar Minott. How have you found the overall experience for yourself - The pros and the cons of being someone in your position?

In some ways it can be good & bad. I'm a DJ, and most shows that I've been on after my performance - some people would come up to me and say "you father is a singer, why not sing?" In that aspect, people expect me to be like my dad, but I have my own style that I bring to the people. I'm not my father. The advantage of it is I have a father who has set a high standard in the world as one of the greatest reggae artists, so that helps a lot. People will listen what you're coming with when they hear that, it opens doors.

On top of that, how instrumental was the fact that you are the daughter of Sugar Minott in getting you started in making music in the first place? If your Father was not a musician and such a well regarded one, do you feel like it's something you would have still pursued?

I don't think I would pursue music if my father wasn't Sugar Minott - because I love Track & Field and Accounts. Those were my passions, but I was born and bred in music - I've never had a real job. I lived where the studio was, born and grew up there. So it wasn't a surprise to anyone when I started doing music. But who knows, if I wasn't born in music maybe I'd be working in the bank or running in the Olympics. I was a track star at school, got Champion Girl every year.

Besides that, you are a female making Reggae music and it seems these days more and more Women are appearing in the business and particularly making conscious music. What are your feelings on that and why do you think that is?

I feel the need to do positive music because the majority of the females out there are just doing regular, quick music with no real message or longevity. You can really count on one hand the amount of conscious female deejays you have, so I chose to go the positive way. My father sings positive music, that's what I know, so that's what I decided to sing.

And more on that, as an artist who is in your position, in regards to children and performers of the future, do you feel a responsibility to set a fine example for the children and particularly the young girls? And perhaps was that an inspiration for the 'Real Fire Woman' tune?

I'm glad you asked that because I'm a mother of 2 girls, and I really see the need for positive music. Because most of this negative music has an impact on society these days. I feel the more the children hear positive music, we'll get more positive results like the youth staying in school, getting a good education, etc... I think as a mom, I have to set a good example for both my children and others. As for Real Fire Woman, I did that after my 2nd child, I took a little break and figured I had to come back with Fire. Telling women to be strong, keep your head up, stand up for what you believe in, etc... More fire and pure fire.

You in particular also have a situation that you're quite easy on the eyes. Some of your peers may not be 'beautiful' in the traditional sense, but one could rather easily see you appearing on magazine covers in the future and such. Is attention for your looks something which you welcome or would you prefer that the attention and accolades given to you be strictly musical?

I welcome it both ways. I've done modeling work for companies like Lapluma Negra clothing, but I really want people to focus on my music and the message. Still, it's a plus when they find me beautiful. That's a blessing from God, and goes hand-in-hand with the music.

In terms of your music, it doesn't seem that you've been the most active of artists. Is this something you've done by design and plan or would you like to record more if the opportunities presented themselves more often?

I'm a single mom of 2 daughters; I'm the only parent in my children's life. So having 2 girls and being a mom in the music can make it very hard at times to balance both the music and family life. At times I take a break. I would love to record more positive songs, but there also has to be a certain quality upheld so I won't voice for any and any producer (big up man like Ras James aka Dr Suess for pushing conscious reggae).

You've also managed to hook up with James Lord and Irie Sounds International, who produced for you a tune in 'Mek It Inna Life' which is available worldwide through iTunes, how did that union come to be and how has it gone thus far for you?

I've known James 5 years; we met at the Sierra Nevada World Music Festival in 2005 in California. Ever since then we've been really good friends. He's a good person, as a young individual it shocks me to see how much he knows about the music and how business-oriented he is, very professional, always on time, and I look forward to doing this album with James.

And you reportedly have an album coming soon on Irie Sounds International for which you've recently shot a video. Can you tell us when to expect it and what you hope to accomplish with the album and its musical direction if possible?

As soon as the tracks are completed, we're in the process of voicing now, choosing the proper riddims, featured artists, etc... There's not an exact release date yet but probably sometime in the fall. What I hope to accomplish? That it gets nominated for a Grammy. The sky is the limit and we always strive for greatness. Musically, it's real quality reggae music - songs that last, long livity. These are songs you can play 5, 10, 20 years down the road and they have the same strength they have the day they get released. Songs with substance.

Besides your Father (I'm assuming he's one of them), who are some of your favourite artists and some who you maybe grew up listening to and enjoy listening to today and why?

I grew up listening to Tenor Saw (Tenor used to lift me up and put me on the speakerbox as a kid on the Youthman Promotion sound), Junior Reid, Garnett Silk, always been a huge fan of Capleton, Sister Carol is my favorite female deejay, who inspired me to grow my locks and gave me a lot of motivation as a teenager. Bob Marley of course as well, that's basically the foundation.

Listening to your style I, and I think most people, would refer to you as a chanter or DJ, but if you listen to certain songs like 'Time Is Dread', you have a bit of a singing voice. Can we expect to maybe hear Fire Pashon singing more in the future?

Many people might not know but I sing a lot. I do harmonies for my dad in the studio and on stage on countless tours. I love to deejay cause I'm ruff, I was a tomboy growing up, climbing trees and all of that. I have this roughness in me to deejay, but definitely look out for more singing. I even did a cover of Alton Ellis' "Sitting in the Park" for a producer in California last summer that's supposed to come out soon.

And in terms of your actual music - How do you go about writing your songs and finding the inspiration? I look at you and hear you as someone who deals with more of the social aspects of consciousness, as opposed to dealing with more of the spiritual is that something which you focus on - Trying to deal more with the topics which tangibly effect everyday life?

I write my songs based on what I see or what is happening around me. Sometimes not particularly me, but sometimes a friend may be going through a situation so I'd write about that. I do spiritual songs as well; I really just go with the mood. I don't sit and say "I'm gonna write this song." So maybe I'm by the river and a spiritual song might come, or I might be at home and a song might come where I'm speaking on behalf of the poor, etc....

And lastly, what do you, as an artist, want people to take away from your music in general? Is there one overlying message that you hope people come away thinking when they hear a Fire Pashon tune?

I want them to take strength from my music because I'm a strong Black Woman. I want them to take independence, cause I'm a very independent Black Woman. And Just positivity from Fire Pashon, nothing less.

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Read comments (5)


Posted by rootsman on 05.29.2010
Nice interview.. Sister really got her mind balanced.. Nuff Raspekt..

Posted by Blaewifey on 06.01.2010
Loving this, as I read it, I was looking forward for the responses, very strong and motivated individual, and to be doing music and balancing as a single mom, respect to you sister, keep doing what you doing, u'll surely reap the rewards........ Baddest queen

Posted by Yoplaz on 06.05.2010
I Love U

Posted by Sista Li on 09.01.2010
Still strong... You are the future. Concious women writting positive music.

One Love.

Posted by Peter Kamau Mwangi on 10.04.2013
Keep on keeping on with the good lyrics and message.

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