King of the dancehall overcomes tragedy with 17th album, Simma
KINGSTON, Jamaica — If ever there were questions about his royalty status, King of the Dancehall, Beenie Man cast away all doubts at the launch of his 17th studio album at Di Lot on Constant Spring Road on Monday night.
Aptly titled Simma, Beenie Man’s latest body of work showcases an artiste who, according to friends and colleagues at the launch, continues to transcend time while staying true to his authentic dancehall roots.
On Monday night, as fans got a taste of Simma, the music veteran told the tale of how he managed to turn one of his most painful life moments into his musical masterpiece.
“Mi mother died about three years ago now and mi deh a country dung a which part me put down mi mother because mi never bury her, mi build a house fi her and put her in deh so me can go look fi her when mi feel a mind. Mi build a comfortable place weh mi mind can function,” he said, indicating that’s where he gathered his first thoughts for the album. “One of the first songs me think ‘bout was a song called The Prayer wid Louie Culture and Charly Blacks. Di meds from making the album was my therapy.”
In an interview with OBSERVER ONLINE, Beenie Man admitted that he’s still struggling to come to grips with the loss of a woman he cherished dearly and said the album helped him to not only express his emotions during a challenging time, but also to reassure him of his talent.
“I’m still in that sadness but music is my joy. Making this album was therapy. I went into a zone and it was nice to put everything together. Mentally and physically doing this album was healing for me,” he said.
The entertainer who celebrated his 50th birthday on Tuesday, said that after nearly four decades in music, the fans and his passion have kept him going.
“Honestly, the people keep me going and after so many years they still want to hear me so I’m just giving them what they want,” he said. “I am an artiste innu and if you’re a creative who is doing this thing for the love of it, you will naturally keep up with the times. Simma is me doing that, keeping up with the times and staying relevant. If me nuh do dat, me ago drop off and drop off nuh inna my thing.”
Simma, is a follow-up to Beenie Man’s 2016 project, Unstoppable and is set for release on August 31. The body of work will feature collaborations from Shaggy, Sean Paul, Louie Culture, Superstar, HoodCelebrityy, Charly Blacks, Dexta Daps, Shenseea as well as international stars, Stonebwoy and Mya.