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Interview: Romain Virgo

Interview: Romain Virgo

Interview: Romain Virgo

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"Donovan Germain has become something of a father figure to me"

Sampler

Romain Virgo

Romain Virgo wants to please the ladies

Jamaican wunderkind Romain Virgo dropped his self-titled album debut last June to wide acclaim. I got a chat with him a few weeks before the album hit the streets and Romain Virgotalked to him about Jamaica, his influences and what it was like working with legendary producer Donovan Germain.

Romain Virgo was only 17 years old when he in 2007 - as the youngest ever - won the Digicel Rising Stars contest in Jamaica. In 2009 he released an EP on Penthouse Records, a record that showed a great talent. Now he has an album that bears his own name.

I had a chat whit him over the phone in late May. The situation in Jamaica was critical at the time and over 60 people had been killed in the state of emergency that prevailed on the island.

- It's tough in Jamaica right now and I try not to go out unless it’s necessary, he says and adds that it is not a normal state on the island.

Working with Donovan Germain

Romain VirgoSomething much more fun to talk about is his debut album that has taken almost a year to finalize. On the album he had the chance working with legendary producer Donovan Germain.

- It’s a real nice feeling to have finalized the album and working with Donovan Germain has been fantastic. He has become something of a father figure to me.

Ladies in mind

Romain Virgo’s lyrics are about personal experiences and things happening around him. He wants the music to be uplifting and danceable and mentions a particularly important target group.

- The ladies have to appreciate the music. That’s really important, he laughs and continues:

- But hopefully the album includes something for everyone.

And he surely seems popular among the ladies. When I caught him live in Stockholm in December the ladies were excited to say the least.

Focus on his music

He grew up on classic reggae artists and says he has been influenced by singers such as Bob Marley, Dennis Brown, Beres Hammond and Alton Ellis, who he also made a tribute to.

- It was Donovan Germain who suggested a tribute to Alton Ellis after he passed away. I never met Alton Ellis, but he is a real favorite. I already knew the lyrics to Breaking Up and Willow Tree, so it was easy to record Alton’s Medley.

Romain Virgo

In addition to recording, Romain Virgo focuses on his full-time studies at the Edna Manley College in Kingston. And it's been a busy time combining recording with studies.

- I have put a lot of time on this album and am glad I have understanding teachers. Probably I will be ready to graduate in about two years and then I can focus solely on my music.

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Posted by victor hugo bautista on 01.15.2011
Kingston Town

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