CANADIAN producer Tim Dubs was never formally trained in his field, but years of touring and working in the studio with several Jamaican engineers and producers helped fine-tune his skill in music production.
Dubs, whose given name is Timothy Doyle, is in a celebratory mood as Easy Now, the four-song EP by 13-year-old Kairo McLean, won the JUNO Award for Reggae Recording of the Year on the weekend.
Dubs is credited as producer of the set. Canadian-born McLean boasts Jamaican roots. His father is Jamaican, while his mother is Canadian-Jamaican.
The JUNO Awards is considered Canada’s equivalent to the Grammys.
Dubs shared his excitement about the win.
“It signifies that real talent and real reggae still holds value in a predominantly dancehall market. Working with Kairo was easy because he has the work ethic of someone who is a seasoned professional. The work in the studio was fun and it occurred very naturally,” Doyle told the Jamaica Observer.
“I am very proud of the win and the work that the team put into the project,” he continued.
Easy Now was released in April 2021. It beat other nominees Herb Dream by Blessed, By Any Means (Exco Levi), Don’t Let it Get to You (Josemar) and Too Ruff (Kirk Diamond and Finn).
Dubs, who hails from Montreal and who has been working with McLean for a year-and-a-half, said reggae music found him.
“I consider reggae music a natural progression as I played with and toured in a ska band for years. My interest in reggae was further accelerated from listening to great Jamaican records,” he said.
Doyle plays a number of instruments, including the drums, piano, guitar and percussion.
“I bring experience as a musician playing multiple instruments, and [from my] many years of studio recording. I have worked with Freddie McGregor, Lutan Fyah, Sizzla, Jah Mason, The Itals, Mikey Dangerous and Sly and Robbie,” said Dubs.
Dubs gave some insight into some of his latest musical projects.
“I am working on new music with Kairo as well as projects with Chester Miller, Curtis Prophet and Mikey Dangerous. I have a new rhythm project coming out soon, featuring Luciano, Lutan Fyah and a number of Canadian reggae artistes.”