ROOTS singer Droop Lion is not afraid to profile his rural roots. In fact, he says it is the inspiration behind his music.
In an interview with the Jamaica Observer, the St Mary native spoke about his childhood and the challenges that led to a recording career.
"Growing up in the rural area I had no access to television, but (had) aradio and from early I knew how to paint a visual picture of what wason air," he said. "Because of the lack of entertainment, I used to sing myself to sleep."
Those years of innovation has paid off for Droop Lion, whose given name is Andrew Davis. He has achieved prominence with songs like Pray For Them, Mama Soon Come Back and Gun Powder.
According to Droop Lion, his passion for songwriting goes back to his days at Baileysvale High School in St Mary when he became aware of social issues. That awareness grew even more when he moved to Olympic Gardens, a tough Kingston community with a totally different scene and character from St Mary.
"It was like a cultural shock to me as a 'country boy'. In Kingston everything was in a fast lane. Also living in the inner city, I was inspired to write around my surroundings where there was a lot of crime and violence," he said.
While completing a six-week course at the Edna Manley College, he met musician Mallory Williams who became his mentor.
"He gave me another course in music, so it wasn't just going into the studio and recording. I had to read every page of the book called 88 Different Ways to Songwriting. After that I recorded my first single called Whap I in 1998," he said.
Droop Lion is among the new wave of roots-reggae acts currently making a mark in the dancehall, thanks to spiritual songs like Pray For Them. He is currently working on his debut album which is being produced by Free People Entertainment.