Our latest interview comes with Canadian based dancehall artist/rapper Fiyah MC. Join us as we discuss everything Fiyah MC, from his difficulties breaking into Jamaica from Canada to his origins in music and much more.
Lets talk your background, so when did you first start recording?
Fiyah MC: “From about 2003 I started recording, but it was low quality so I couldn’t release any of those early recordings”
So how long it did it take for you to release your first official single?
Fiyah MC: “I released my first official single back in 2014 with a video as well, the track was called ‘Gifted and Black’
Following on from your early experiences when and where did you get the name Fiyah MC?
Fiyah MC: “From high school friends, M.C are the actual first two letters of my last name. I went from being called Dee MC to Fiyah MC”
What are some of the important lessons you have learnt since starting out in the music industry?
Fiyah MC: “First off you really have to love music to even stand a chance at being successful at it. I have seen many people give up because of the trials and tribulation associated with the music industry.
Secondly you have to put your money where your mouth is, invest in yourself because no one is going to help you until you get to the point where they can see themselves getting a return on their investment.
Lastly don’t expect people who are your friends in the industry to help you, everyone is about their paper and even though you may feel like you would help another person out because of friendship don’t expect them to do the same for you.
This is your dream, thus your responsibility”
Being a recording artist that is based outside of Jamaica, what are some of the difficulties you have faced breaking into dancehall from Canada?
Fiyah MC: “The fact that the Canadian audience only gravitates to artists who are well known in Jamaica or Europe is the biggest obstacle to an artist based in Canada. No matter how good your music is, it has to be popping in a different market for Canadians to pick it up”
How has being in Canada given an edge to your music that an artist that has always lived in Jamaica wouldn’t have?
Fiyah MC: “When people leave Jamaica and live abroad the only thing we have to connect us to our homeland is our culture and music, therefore for me personally it makes my music mean more than just entertainment which definitely gives it more of an edge”
Has living in Canada given you better insight into the international market and what is more likely to play on international radio than an artist living in Jamacia?
Fiyah MC: “Yeah a bit, but artists in Jamaica still control the overall direction of Dancehall and Reggae genres”
Does social media allow you to bridge the gap between yourself and the Jamaican market?
Fiyah MC: “Definitely, most of my fans are from Jamaica, Mexico and St Lucia. Social media allows me to not only target whatever audience I want, but it also gives me the ability to learn which countries are interacting with my music. As of right now I get the most engagements from Jamaica”
Finally, what are your main plans for 2019?
Fiyah MC: “To keep releasing great music. Do as many videos as I can and garner enough momentum to get my songs into regular radio and television rotation and keep preparing my fans for the release of my next project ‘Goldmind’ that is currently in the mix and mastering stages”