Artist Interview: Neddy Smith
Tell us about yourself and your music
My name is Lester G (NEDDY), Smith. I am a bassist a recording and performing artist. I am also a producer, singer/songwriter, composer, a poet, an author, an educator. I was born in Montego Bay, Jamaica. My mother was a Pocomanian and spiritual leader, and father, a businessman. I learned to read music from the Salvation Army, studied music theory and composition from my mentor, played and recorded on a few albums and have lead ensembles of my own.
Talk to us more about your latest release
“My Pocomanian Girl” is my latest album. It’s a personal tribute to a musical and spiritual culture of Jamaica. Telling stories or writing songs regarding human endeavor through any art form is fundamentally based on principles adapted from an ancient ancestral place to use as a template for communicating history, tradition, and culture. In other words, it’s a form expressed best through words and music, language, dance, and other visual arts forms aided by the adaptation of modern technology.
The release of the album to the worldwide public dropped November 15TH. It’s now available online via digital download, streaming and on physical media for purchase mostly via stores such as CDBaby®, Amazon®, iTunes®, and others where music is sold and streamed internationally.
What inspired you to write this release?
I was inspired to record this album by revisiting my ancestral homeland, Jamaica. It was strange to me how my mother’s influence as a Pocomanian transformed an original Hip Hop project with my family into an Afro Caribbean Reggae and Ska and Dance album with a message that reflects today’s culture.
Any plans to release a video?
I have published a video on YouTube from the album titled, “MY POSOMANIAN GIRL.”
Any plans to hit the road?
I am in the process of planning live performances in 2018. Due to the busy schedule in the studio working on the album and the many late nights not being with my family, I’ve decided not to take any gigs for 2017. I will announce new show dates once finalized with my team for the 2018 calendar year.
As an indie artist, how do you brand yourself and your music to stand out from the rest of the artists out there?
This question is an essential one for me. I’ve always used the name my mother gave me, and most of my friends called me, [Neddy] as an artist and performing musician to brand my music as a professional traveling all over the world. I’ve also incorporated my early musical exposure to the tropical styles of music from the Caribbean especially, Reggae from Jamaica and the many experiences with other diverse cultural, artistic expression and the Euro-American dance styles including Jazz, country, and Blues in my music which gives it a unique sound.My songwriting and composition style are exceptional with a bit of familiarity that fits my overall personality..
Who have you been listening to lately?
I’ve always love listening to Biggie Small and Tupac Shakur, Snoop Dogg and Shaggy. Also from other genres, I just love listening to James Brown, Aretha Franklin, and Frank Sinatra still listening to the classics from such composers as Mozart and Beethoven. When listening to the Reggae of Bob Marley and Jimmy Cliff and others from that genre. I cannot stop listening to Michael Jackson and currently got hip to Taylor Swift. My listening taste is diverse and does not fall into any one genre.
Tell us about your passions
I am passionate about learning new recording techniques,technologies, writing poetry and stories as creating music. I would get up early, head to my laptop or my studio to brainstorm or record a new idea.
What else is happening next in your world?
I am currently performing my poetry at venues and working on completing a book of poetry. I am also speaking as an author and book signing for my recent novel, Valerie Palmary: A Small-Town Girl. Planning rehearsal for 2018 performances with musicians.
Thanks for an awesome interview, Lester G N!
Connect with Neddy Smith