His passion for music runs deep.

“I am from a musical background,” said Shawn Clarke, whose stage name is CM.

His parents, Mona Clarke and Clifton Clarke, are among relatives who either sing or play instrument impressively.

CM said he discovered his affinity with music when he was about seven years old, and was musically involved at church – Brown’s Town Seventh Day Adventist near Point Hill.

While he was still enrolled at Spanish Town High School, CM recorded his first song, Street Life, at House of Hits Records in Spanish Town, St. Catherine.

He told The Beacon that, since doing his first song, he has attained greater maturity.

“Mi improve on a lot of things, including voicing, writing songs, and learning more about the business side of the music,” he commented.

The 29-year-old, who said his stage name (CM) stands for Clean Money, dabbles in various genres of music, but he is now focused mainly on Reggae and Dancehall.

“Most of my songs are based on reality,” he noted.

One such song, My Mother, for example, chronicles aspects of the artiste’s childhood struggle, living in a one-bedroom wooden house with his parents at Store Hill district, in the Kitson Town area of St. Catherine.

“Mi used to sleep on the floor most times,” CM recalled. “When mi sister born, sometimes mi mother let me and my sister sleep on the bed, and she and my father sleep on the floor.”

The ‘My Mother’ song eventually inspired CM to produce his first music video.

Late last year, he released his second video, which is for his song titled Mi Used To Save.

CM told The Beacon that measures implemented against the COVID-19 pandemic have slowed his musical progress, but he remains steadfast in his pursuit of the big break in the entertainment business.

“Mi nuh get the break yet and mi start thinking about helping young artistes… I know the struggle of being a poor young artiste. The reason I said ‘poor’ is because, when yuh don’t have the money to do the music, it is a real struggle,” CM commented.

“Mi would like to do some producing, and have mi own label, mi own studio, and mi own band.”

He, in the meantime, encouraged other young artistes to believe in their dream and God.

“As long as you are consistent and you believe in what you are doing, you can [achieve]…” CM further advised.

He noted that he, for example, has remained consistent in music although his journey has taken him through various professions.

His first job, which he got while still in high school, was at a bag juice factory in Spanish Town. He also worked at a Spanish Town wholesale, at an automobile repair shop, and as a taxi operator on the route between Spanish Town and Kitson Town.

CM, who has a special love for cooking, is now a security guard searching for a producer to help catapult him to a place of prominence in music.

“I don’t have a steady producer,” he said. “That is what I would really want to have right now.”

CM has a six-year-old daughter – Shanalda, and he is an alumnus of Point Hill Leased Primary School in St. Catherine.


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By Mills