A discussion which was held earlier this year will fully manifest itself as the curtain closes on a tumultuous 2020 and dancehall megastar Sean Paul pulls out all the stops to thrill fans at a virtual gig for Miller Music Amplified. The performance will premiere worldwide (excluding the United States) today on Sean Paul’s and Miller Genuine Draft’s YouTube pages at 4 p.m. Jamaica time, and the entertainer is pumped.
“They called me early in the year about doing the show and I agreed. With the lockdown in place, it was one of the first virtual offers I received,” Sean Paul shared with The Gleaner. His first such appearance for 2020 was the Radio 1 Big Weekend UK 2020 virtual show, which was recorded at his home and aired on Sunday, May 24, to much fanfare. “With this kind of show there is the time constraint, 20 minutes long. And with my kind of songs, that means you have to be creative and do parts of songs in a package best suited to the audience,” he added.
Over on his social media pages, the multiplatinum-selling artiste is promising that it will be exceptional, while Miller Genuine Draft’s promotion, set against the backdrop of Sean Paul’s thumping Back It Up Deh, asks, “Who’s free Friday? @duttypaul will be taking to the virtual stage for an epic #MillerMusicAmplified performance”.
Sean Paul is the first dancehall act and the fourth artiste to be featured this season, which has seen performances from English EDM DJ Jax Jones, American rapper/R&B artiste 6lack, and Russian singer Noize MC. The hybrid band performance is being held with regard to the critical circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Although the Temperature artiste thinks that this is definitely a cool way to close out 2020, he confessed that, like many artistes for whom the stage is their home, he misses the up-close-and-personal interaction with fans. “Virtual is the ‘new normal’, as they say, and I got into it. It was a bit challenging, because without the live audience it tends to feel a bit like rehearsals, but you just have to make yourself understand that this is showtime,” he said
Sean Paul’s concert was shot at Tuff Gong Studios in St Andrew and the Grammy-winning artiste gathered a slew of Jamaican talent for the set. He is happy with the outcome and even happier that despite the pandemic, he has accomplished quite a bit this year, which has seen him producing more. The word on the street is that he is back in his hardcore dancehall flow.
“Every year, I am on the same juggling with Kartel, Mavado and Konshens, but the songs are not played, so that’s why there’s the perception that I am not doing dancehall. I am in a weird position trying to do a balancing act with dancehall and the pop crowd, which doesn’t necessarily know about the entire genre,” he explained.
The Get Busy singer is also pleased with his streaming numbers for 2020, which, according to just-released Spotify figures, show him clocking 625.9 million streams in all of Spotify’s 92 territories. “It’s crazy, because I have only put out a few songs this year. Bless up Spotify and all the fans,” he said. Sean Paul’s biggest streaming year so far was 2017 which, he says, was “really good” when he released the Mad Love EP, featuring Dua Lipa, Tory Lanez, Jhené Aiko, Ellie Goulding, Becky G and Stefflon Don.