Ce’Cile Says She Was Ahead Of Her Time In Dancehall

Ce'Cile - YouTubeCe’Cile says she was way ahead of her time in Dancehall as a pioneer for female vocalists in a genre traditionally ruled by deejays.

Her passion for music began early, but her first foray into singing Reggae love songs fell flat. “Nobody wanted to hear dem song deh,” she told Negus Imara on a recent episode of the Imara Nation podcast. “I found that out quickly because I released a song in high school and nobody no waah hear. I think it was called Beat a Mi Heart. It was my first song.”

Determined to carve her niche, she entered the Dancehall arena with a sound that was both sexy and different. “Dancehall was rough and it wasn’t Reggae like for nice girls like Lila [Iké] and everybody, heh heh dem never waah hear dem thing deh. I think you had JC Lodge and Carlene Davis who my mom used to listen to and those are the people I thought I could be because growing up I heard them, so those were the persons I heard growing up,” she shared.

Ce'Cile - BossUndeterred by the male-dominated scene, Ce’Cile said she created her own space. “I thought music was big enough to do that,” she said. “I was an anomaly because I was coming from the country and I’m trying to bring a little bit more softness to it and it was not all the time that it was received well.”

“A lot of times I went on shows and what females are doing now which is just being confidently up there singing the song and dem say I flopped on the show because they wanted women to be jumping up all over the place and I tell a lot of people that why a lot of women do a lot of men bashing songs it’s because we get a lot of  response from the females when we are bashing men because men don’t cheer for women,” she explained.

She elaborated, “If a woman is on stage, maybe if you’re a rasta or something when a woman is singing they will appreciate it but they appreciate it more silently like by nodding or looking but if it’s a man up there dem gonna bus how much how much shot. Men don’t give that energy to women and what you want on stage is that type of fanfare.”


The Manchester native eventually co-produced her breakthrough single Changez, a playful jab at popular deejays, with producer Cordel “Skatta” Burrell.

“My friend had a studio and I said Ok I’m going to manage the studio for you and in exchange you teach me about production and Skatta was an engineer, Skatta who do Coolie Dance and my friend was doing R&B and mi thief Skatta and carry him go to another studio and say we are going to do our own production and our first production was ( Changez). Leftside build dah riddim deh, me and Skatta a the producer and that was my first juggling,” she said.

She said the song initially came about after popular sound clash selector Fire Links approached her to record a track. “Fire Links asked me to sing a song pon him riddim and I was like what am I going to sing? And I came up with the idea of disrespecting deejays just like a dubplate because Fire links is a DJ so I put like Skyjuice and Rolex and then I realized there was no more Djs so I added artists names like Shaggy and Baby Cham and I remembered ding ding ding I cannot give this to anybody, I have to do this for myself because this going to bus me so that’s how I said no we going to do this,” she recalled.

Cecile – Reggae NorthCe’Cile said she remains a champion for female artists. She readily acknowledged the trailblazing work of veterans like Tanya Stephens, Patra, Lady Saw, Macka Diamond, and Diana King. “I remember watching Patra on 106 & Park on the bike with Tupac and I was like oh that’s a Jamaican girl. I can’t see myself never respecting those who came before me and what they did and paved the way and even Macka Diamond, Macka still going strong and she has been there long long time,” she said. “I hate calling names because then you miss some people and some people say you never call dem name but I’m just using that as an example to say there has been a lot of powerful women.”

She also expressed her admiration for some female artists who emerged after her.

Ce'cile News and New Music - Urban Islandz“There are so many now that I like,” she said. “Alaine is one of my favourites because I love writers, if you can’t write, I mean you could sing but if your writing is just ABC level, I like you but I love Alaine and that;s why I love her and Tanya Stephens …Tanya is so bad that it goes over people head the way she is super talented.”

“Shenseea got my ear from I heard her singing and my friend showed me her, Was it Loodi? Because to this day I think that is one of the baddest songs. No man, Jiggle Jiggle, there’s a song weh she did name Jiggle Jiggle, then I heard this big thunderous voice and I was like what the hell is this,” she continued. “To this day I feel like she should be doing that so when she doesn’t do that, I miss it…I think they should remix that and put like Chris Brown on it and of course I love Jada, Jada is a writer.”

“Me love Lila, Love Lila,” she added.

Watch the full interview below.

Source: Ce’Cile Says She Was Ahead Of Her Time In Dancehall – DancehallMag

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