Junior X calls on Jah


Junior X calls on Jah

By Howard Campbell
Observer senior writer

Tuesday, July 07, 2020

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RICHARD Wright was not yet known as Junior X when deejay Daddy Screw took him to producer Dave Kelly in the mid-1990s. Kelly gave the budding singer a straightforward assessment.

“Him sey, 'yuh can write yuh nuh but yuh vocals weak. Work on yuh voice an' come back,'” Junior X recalled.

He never returned to Kelly's Mad House camp, but heeded the producer's advice and sharpened his vocal skills. In 2005, he got his first hit song with Plead my Cause.

After taking a near two-year break to deal with family matters, Junior X recently released Jah Will Deliver Us, a song produced by Small Axe Productions.

“Is a uplifting song, 'cause that's wha' mi dey yah fi do, uplift people. It's di greatest gift to man,” he told the Jamaica Observer.

The dreadlocked artiste did release a handful of songs in 2019, but said little was heard of them due to lack of promotion. Jah Will Deliver Us is among a clutch of songs he has done this year which he hopes will culminate in the release of an album.

Plead my Cause was followed by songs like Gangster Life and Hustler which enabled Junior X to escape the one-hit wonder tag, but his career has not flourished the way he hoped.

He blames that on questionable management choices, but despite a frustrating period, Junior X says the desire to write and record songs never waned.

“Mi cyaan play a note pon a instrument but mi can play mi throat an' mi write all a mi songs. I guess is something mi born with,” he stated.

From the Windward Road area of east Kingston, Junior X grew up on the sounds of Buju Banton, who he describes as his “mental mentor”; Peter Tosh and country singers like Kenny Rogers.

It took almost 10 years after meeting Kelly for him to get the breakthrough with Plead my Cause which turned out to be one of 2005's big hits.

Junior X points to his diverse influences as the guide for his writing.

“I tek all a dem different expressions an' make dem my own. Mi hear it, mi feel it then mi express it,” he said.

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