By Sadeke Brooks—-
With the aim of promoting Jamaica worldwide, United States-based artist Desmond The Songwriter said he tried to represent the country to the best of his ability when he participated in the Apollo Live reality series that will be aired later this year.
Some time ago, Desmond said he auditioned for the show when it went to Atlanta and he was invited to be part of it. This was way better than his previous attempt where he got to the top of the line to enter the auditorium right in time to hear that auditions had ended.
Nonetheless, he said he was pleased with his three-day experience on the show that will be aired on November 25 on BET/Centric. He said he was the only Caribbean person on the show, and only one other act performed an original song.
“I met a lot of important people. I worked with a really good band. To go in an environment like that and people seem to like my music, it was very encouraging,” he told The Gleaner.
“It was a good experience and it was a good opportunity to get my music played to this packed house of people. It boosts my confidence to step out more than I have in the past year or so.”
Desmond does mostly reggae, ska and soul, but has started to sing funk because that is what his band is comfortable playing.
Reggae was the genre he chose for ‘Apollo Live’.
“I feel more obligated to wave the flag more than when I was in Jamaica. I used to sing alternative music but since I have been here, I think it is important to do what I am doing,” said Desmond, who migrated to the US eight years ago.
In addition to singing reggae during his performances, Desmond says he also represents Jamaica by wearing the national colours on the show. During the events, he also claims to promote the food, music, athletics and friendliness of Jamaicans.
As he waits for the show to be aired, Desmond says he is still heavily promoting his Losers Never Win EP. He says he has sold about 2,000 physical copies and several online. Ultimately, however, he would like to get someone to represent him and eventually perform at concerts in Europe.
But that is not the only thing on his plate, as he is currently completing a Doctor of Musical Arts in conducting at the University of Southern Mississippi.