Essae JV, an up and coming artiste whose real name is Graig Douglas, said the year 2020 was not all bad for him musically.
He told The Beacon that he was able to release a few singles, three music videos and two EPs, adding that his fan base also grew exponentially on major social media platforms.
Some players in the entertainment industry have argued that 2020 was their toughest year, considering the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and measures imposed to slow its spread.
The measures included a ban on parties here in Jamaica, the lock-down of some business establishments, as well as the imposition of travel restrictions.
Essae stated that, amid the restrictions, he resorted to writing more songs and marketing himself online.
“I couldn’t go to studio as often, or go to parties and promote. But, over time, I realized that it all was a blessing in disguise, because it kinda level the playing field [in the music industry] in some sense,” he explained.
“Once people were through listening to the artistes that they are used to, it was easier now for them to move on to up and coming artistes such as myself… I realized that a lot of people started to follow my music. Even my subscriber count on YouTube and even Instagram went up because people were paying a lot more attention to my music now.”
Essae further stated that the second EP he released last year – Friendly Ghost – brought him unprecedented level of online success.
After it was released on December 18, the EP entered the iTunes Reggae Album Chart at Number 16 and then climbed to Number 5, the artiste disclosed.
He added: “Over time, the EP dropped off [the chart] because it is very competitive there, and I don’t have that big fan base as yet to bring in those streaming numbers. The EP was doing really good.”
Essae said the EP has five songs, including the title track – Friendly Ghost, which speaks about fake friends.
He stated that Bullpuss Entertainment owns two of the riddims featured. The others were created respectively by Get A life Records, Young Boss Production, and Boxy Records.
“They are responsible for the composition [of the riddims for the second EP], but, in terms of the whole production aspect of things, that is my label – Fast Nation Music, which covered the entire recording process, the mixing, the mastering – all of that,” Essae said.
He also told The Beacon that, as 2021 progresses, he will release the video for the ‘Friendly Ghost’ track, release a Reggaeton single, and do a collab with an artiste from Uganda.
“I am really trying to do a lot of collabs and features outside the [Dancehall] genre to expand my reach and widen my fan base,” said Essae from Linstead in St. Catherine.
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