Give my music a chance, Bermuda
Kiandre Spencer is counting on Bermuda to support him in his dream.
The 17-year-old singer-songwriter thinks he has the talent to become a big name in pop music.
With help from Kellan Lewis of Rawyal Family Management & Entertainment, he has already had a great response to the songs he has put out as Ynmidas. As soon as Covid-19 allows he plans to hit the stage with a live performance.
But until that time he is asking Bermuda to download and listen.
“I have an EP that I released called The Coronation. If they stream that they can support me; they can follow us on social media, just keep up with all our releases,” the artist said.
“In the future when I have shows, they can support me by showing up; having fun with us. Just believe in us like we believe in ourselves.”
The Berkeley Institute student started making music about two years ago, inspired by his brother Mikal Minors.
“He’s into music and he makes music. I went to his house and he introduced me to some stuff. I played around with the mic and I actually got into it.
“We made a beat and then he was just, ‘Hop on the mic and see if you have anything.’ He said it was actually good and that I should try and write something and it went from there.”
Although Ynmidas had always loved music he discovered he “wasn’t very good” at the trumpet lessons he took.
Because classes at school were also “pretty hard”, he put all his energy into his songs. And then Mr Lewis reached out.
“He’s actually a friend of my mom’s,” Ynmidas said. “He saw a video I had posted. That’s how we linked up.”
Mr Lewis said: “I saw his music and I wanted to reach out to him directly and it didn’t work out. Like he said, I’m a friend of his mom’s but I didn’t even know that he was her son; I was telling her about him without realising that.”
Zakiya Simmons ultimately introduced him to her son but “unfortunately the pandemic came and it’s messed up a lot of the plans we did have for the roll out of 2019-2020”, Mr Lewis said.
Part of his interest in helping Ynmidas succeed is that he was once in his shoes. In 2004 he formed Bermy Boys with friends at Sandys Secondary Middle School.
The group was the first runner-up in Bermuda Teen Idol 2005 and also performed at Harbour Nights.
“We got paid to perform,” Mr Lewis said. “My mother was actually our manager so I got a lot of the game in management from my mother who has her contacts and her relationships.
“When the group broke up I kind of distanced myself from music. I was still kind of writing but I was just discouraged. As I got older I saw that same pattern happening with many different artists who were just getting discouraged by the lack of industry that’s present in Bermuda.”
His hope is that “a fresh approach at the music industry” will help Ynmidas succeed.
“He has immense talent,” he said. “I believe in his talent. I’m heavily invested in seeing what he does come to a reality. I just want to get his story out there to inspire other people and hopefully we can make some contacts and network along the way.”
The artist, who named himself after the mythological king with the golden touch, has big hopes for his future.
“I want to tour around the world performing my music, selling my music globally – on all continents, all countries – and then bring the industry back to Bermuda in the end,” he said.
“I feel like I have the talent I just need to stay focused.”
Ynmidas has been encouraged by the feedback he has had to the music he has put on streaming platforms.
“It’s been good. People like my music. I got a lot of new people hitting me up saying they really like my stuff.”
As far as next steps, Mr Lewis is looking to partner with people and companies who “believe in our vision”.
“For example, let’s say you have a clothing company and you would like to promote your clothing brand we can work with you and put your brand in our music videos and photo shoots and stuff like that,” he said.
“We’re definitely open to partnerships, donations, sponsorships … we’re definitely open to people coming and joining our team – that’s essential. And we’re definitely open to individuals using their network to help us.
“We want to invest in the youth instead of allowing them to get caught in the cracks. If we can save one kid from going to jail and going down the wrong direction, I think that’s noteworthy. His music is very popular; it’s got a pop sound to it. And he’s a very genuine, nice young man.”
Ynmidas, he added, was just one of many talented Bermudians in need of support.
“We are imploring the community, [anyone] that would like to see young people do better and go further in life – just hear them out.
“We shouldn’t be out there creating jobs in construction and landscaping for the young people if they’re good at music. It’s just not going to work. He’s not going to be as committed to the landscaping or the construction as he would be to his music. I feel like here in Bermuda that’s what we do. We kind of force the youth into a direction where we want them to go versus supporting their own vision. I think that’s what we can do and I believe if we do that we’ll see more success in the future from our youth.”
Listen to Ynmidas on all music streaming platforms. Follow him on Instagram and Snapchat: @ynmidas. For more information: www.rawyalfamily.com; firstname.lastname@example.org