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Interview: CeCile

Interview: CeCile

Interview: CeCile

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"I've experienced the hostility towards Jamaicans and I want to change the perception of me"


Ce’Cile found Jamaican reggae in Europe

The self-imposed bad gyal Ce’Cile dropped her second full-length album Jamaicanization in August, for which she went to Europe to find the Jamaican reggae sound she was looking for. United Reggae got a chat with her when she stopped by Paris on her European promotional tour.

Ce’cile is a nice breeze in the heavily male dominated reggae and dancehall scene. Just like Lady Saw she has made a name for herself by being outspoken and delivering fierce and risky lyrics over pulsating dancehall riddims.

But Ce’Cile and Lady Saw have more in common. They both have their respective alter ego. Lady Saw sings gospel and more roots oriented reggae under her real name Marion Hall. Ce’Cile has created her bad gyal alter ego for her more equivocal tunes.

On her latest album 'Jamaicanization' she is more radio-friendly than ever. But her voice is the same – combining sultry singing with rougher deejay parts.

“It’s another side of me,” says Ce’Cile on the phone, and continues:

“The concept I wanted was truly Jamaican. I wasn’t feeling that hip-hop coming from Jamaica,” she explains, and adds:

“There’s a lot of negativity in music right now. I don’t want to be vexed. I want to feel that love from Jamaica, a sweet island breeze. Easy-listening and fun.”

Change image

CeCile - JamaicanizationCe’Cile talks fast. Very fast. It’s hard for me to keep up with her pace and understanding her patois at times. But what is perfectly clear is that she wants to change her image, partly due to the general view of dancehall artists as being rude and unreliable.

“It’s not an accident that it’s radio-friendly. I’ve experienced the hostility towards Jamaicans and I want to change the perception of me,” explains Ce’Cile and gives an example:

“One time I was offered a pre-recorded interview. And when we did the interview he [the interviewer] said ‘oh my God, you’re wonderful’. I’m being punished for something I haven’t done.”

Authentic reggae in Germany

Ironically enough she found the Jamaican sound she was looking for in Germany and producer Ben Bazzarian.

“I don’t want a wack hip-hop beat when I ask for a riddim. I don’t know what genre it is”, she says, and continues:

“I wanted something authentic Jamaican. Ben is born in Iran and lives in Germany. He respects the culture and history of Jamaica. It’s a very good vibe in Germany.”

Slackness sells

Ce’Cile says that it’s important to be a well-rounded artist and that she’ll probably do something totally different in the future. But it seems that it’ll still be radio-friendly, even though she is clear about the fact that slack lyrics sell.

CeCile“It’s a way of getting fast money and a marketing tool,” she says.

Slackness has reigned in Jamaica for a long time and even though Ce’Cile wants to change the perception of herself she says she doesn’t judge people who sing about guns and sex.

“People are starving and who are we to tell them the way out? It’s a hard life,” she states, and continues:

“It’s good to reinvent yourself. Have a positive way. Bounty Killer shouldn’t sing another gun song. It doesn’t make sense anymore. His fans are probably also tired of that,” she explains, and concludes:

“I don’t want to be Beenie Man, Vybz Kartel or Bounty Killer. I want to be played. I want to show you what I can. When running a restaurant you can’t only cook what you like. You have to be current and you have to be on top.”

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Read comments (2)

Posted by denny on 11.22.2011
"When running a restaurant you can’t only cook what you like. You have to be current and you have to be on top.”

With all respect- if you love what you do and put your heart into it people will listen. Good chefs cook for love and love what they cook or the restaurant fails. Same for music.

Posted by johnbless on 11.23.2011
I agree too. Your heart must be truly in that which you love, perfect to impeccability that which you love most and really and truly the best will be apparent even from the harshest of critics. It applies in carriers, professions, hobbies etc etc. That"s why there are gifts, talents, abilities and capabilities so to speak. A jack of all trades in an area that requires specialty is a failure. The same is applies to music as well

Comments actually desactivated due to too much spams

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