I’ve been around the globe. India, Ethiopia, Uganda, Tanzania, South Africa, Brasil, Colombia, Trinidad & Tobago, Jamaica, and finally my maternal homeland of Haiti. Ten counties in ten months, and the door is open to a world I’ve only partially discovered. This has been the most exciting year of my life! I’ve trekked into jungles miles away from the nearest human, settled in cosmopolitan labyrinths making dear friends and developing daily routines, I’ve been sucked in by paradise tropical islands on more than one continent, been touched by people and various struggles of the greatest importance and in desperate need of support, and fell for girls in more than one country, yet still… I’m coming home. Back to work.
It was 14 years ago that I wrote my first rhyme. More than half a lifetime has passed since then and the feeling music gives me is still the same. Art has always come naturally for me, even before I could read or write I was drawing, painting, and improvising music while other kids were playing outside. But it wasn’t until I first heard my voice on a recording, and when I stepped on stage, that I knew what my calling was. I could see the power in words and how the stage could be used as a platform not just to elevate the artist with the microphone but the people who surrounded him, soaking in the music.
I have been blessed with your support. An ever-growing following of people who enjoy my music, and value what I have to say. Few people are given this opportunity, and I view it as a privilege and treat it as a responsibility.
Everywhere I have gone on this spectacular journey I have connected with people through music. Strangers have turned to friends through shared rhythm and rhyme. I was welcomed into spiritual ceremonies in East Africa, brought on stage at Carnival in Brasil, welcomed in the studios and homes of internationally respected artists as well as unsung heroes and geniuses; all the while not-so-quietly soaking in my surroundings like a musical sponge.
However, all the while home was calling. My life and career back in the US was never far from my heart, and I spent many hours on long train, plane, bus and boat rides writing rhymes and thinking about my people back home. My responsibility to share and educate, and bring people together. I spent the first part of my career sharing… My life, my story, Yours Truly. Then I needed to further educate myself on life beyond my world. And now I head home, humbly ready to share my new vision.
Expect new music, new ideas, and more shows in new places. The Zilla is back.
I missed y’all.