Fi real! A farce to be reckoned with
From seedy clubs in Las Vegas to the cornfields of New York, parody artist Uzimon has travelled to all ends with his unique form of reggae music.
The artist, whose real name is Daniel Frith, will return to the Island this weekend to perform at a release party for his latest record Showdown.
Expected to be a sold-out event, Uzimon will take to the stage with his New York City touring band at Docksiders on Saturday.
The biggest draw perhaps is theres a 600 percent chance the artist himself will be there.
He grew up in Bermuda and was a voracious collector of reggae vinyl records from the age of 12.
Uzimon tried his hand at the genre and wrote a few songs, but nothing ever came of it. Then in the summer of 2008, he was spurred on by a friend to create his own unique style of music.
I was sitting around with some friends over breakfast one Sunday [and] Jon Legere and I were trying to think of some funny ideas to shoot for a video.
I pitched the reggae character idea and Jon was like, Lets do it today, so we made a video and the response was good.
Four years and three albums later, his style has evolved a lot.
The music aspect got really serious after the first album, he explained. There were a lot of things to improve and we did, [particularly] now working with the incredible musicians we have, some of New York Citys finest reggae and rocksteady players.
We take the music as seriously as we do the comedic/performance aspect.
The latest album is a collection of songs paying homage to music of the late 1970s and 80s, when several reggae and dance hall artists seemed to have a fascination with that western, shoot-em-up cowboy aesthetic.
Tickets can be purchased at Docksiders in advance for $20; or $25 at the door if there are any left over.
A portion of the profits will go to marine environmental group Groundswells Bermuda Blue Halo Project. Doors open at 9pm.
Alternative rock band Another Plane Crash will perform at 9.30pm. Music will be provided in between sets by DJ OB1 and DJ Colt 45. Tan Z will serve as the nights MC.
Showdown is available on iTunes for $10.
Uzimon spoke with The Royal Gazette in anticipation of the big event.
Q: Will you be on Island for the album release party?
A: I most likely hope to be there as I am performing, but sometimes I am not sure where I am at any given point, and sometimes I am everywhere and nowhere at once.
Sometimes I am in spirit, sometimes in body, sometimes in mind. However there is a 600 percent chance all three will convene and I will appear mysteriously at Docksiders, November 24. So, possibly ... I will be there.
Q: Are you looking forward to having locals hear your latest tunes? Is it ever a bit nerve-racking when youre not sure how they will respond, particularly fellow Bermudians?
A: Neva! Bermudians love UZIMON BAAAAD! Except this one guy named Paul sumting.
Q: What can fans expect with your latest album Showdown?
A: Lyrical bullets, microphone murder, and references to my pet cat, Terror Fabulous. Also, that real old school authentic vintage reggae sound. Just to prove a point.
Q: For people who havent heard your music yet, how would you describe your sound?
A: U-Roy meets Yellowman meets Boyz 2 Men meets Barry Manilow meets Conan The Barbarian meets Super Cat meets Popcaaan meets The Incredible Hulk inna dancehall fashion.
Q: What songs on the new album are your favourite and why? What are the songs about?
A: They are all mi favourite. But if I had to chose one in particular I would say tracks 1 to 12. Colombian Daughta is a personal song to me. Its about that real part in every mans life when he falls in love with a prostitute.
Q: When did you get your start in music?
A: When I was a zygote.
Q: How old were you when you first fell in love with reggae, a teenager or young boy?
A: A yute [youth]. Real young. Bought mi first 45s with tooth fairy money.
Q: Why did you decide to use comedy, instead of a straight-up take to reggae?
A: As the great prophet George Costanza from Seinfeld said: My favourite two things in the world are food and sex. Its only natural to combine the two ...
However I dont consider myself a comedian. I love everything, therefore I combine everything. Comedy and reggae, horseback riding, synchronised swimming and clay pigeon shooting.
Q: Do you think youve found a relatively untapped area of the market?
A: Fi real! I have monopolised di market on male 40-something pot heads who work at Gamestop and still live with their parents, everywhere! Big time Dolla!
Q: What are your career aspirations? How far do you want to take your music?
A: From the cliffs of Dover to the radio of a migrant worker in the cornfields of New York City, to a seedy unisex bathroom of an illegal club in Vegas my music to di world!
Q: You are currently living in the US and Canada, I understand. What have you been up to? Is music a full-time gig for you?
A: Full-time, fi real.
Q: What do you hope fans learn about you from this album?
A: That I am farce to be reckoned with.
Q: Since starting your recording career have you learned anything about yourself?
A: I have learned how inspirational I am to others.
Q: Are there any challenges trying to make it in the entertainment business that youve encountered?
A: The music bizness has its challenges. People no longer buy tapes! So you must figure out different ways to make dat money.
Q: Whats the best part of the job for you?
A: Being the best.
Q: When youre not recording what are you doing?
A: When I am not touring or recording, you can catch me in Brooklyn at my very own martial arts studio. I developed my own system of self-defence, called ... Kung Fu.
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