Our exclusive chat with Betti Mac
How would you best describe your sound?
Popular beats mixed with reggae vibes, hence ‘Pop Reggae’.
Tell us about your new EP.
Wow! So this ‘EP’ is what’s been going on in my real life for the past 10 years or so; I usually write n’ sing about my experiences.
When was the eureka moment when you realized music was your calling?
The eureka moment came when i was about 8 years old n’ performed on a children’s television show in Jamaica called ‘Ring Ding’, hosted by the late ‘Louise Bennett’, but then the big moment came when I sang at my graduation, which is track seven on this EP, ‘I Forgive’. Everyone was congratulating me with tears in their eyes telling me how touched they were by my singing including my Mom, Dad n’ Brothers, may their souls R.I.P.
Do you have a typical structure when it comes to songwriting?
Not really! I can listen to a beat (musical rhythms) and once i like it the lyrics just flows n’ the rest is history.
You’re a native Jamaican. How has your country influenced you?
Yes! Being Jamaican n’ growing up there is everything to me and has influenced me in every note I sing.
What do you hope listeners take away from your music?
Wow! I hope they feel my emotions though my lyrics n’ singing n’ take away the positive messages i’m singing about.
What are some albums or songs that shaped you as an artist?
The first album I bought with my own money as a teenager was a Junior Tucker album. I remember taking a picture at home, holding it in front of the camera I had asked my sister to take. Not sure where that picture is today, but I remember being over joyed. The second album I remember listening to was Dolly Parton love her songs n’ movies also Kenny Rogers n’ Tom Jones. This is a funny story, when I was about 4 years old, I remember standing in the kitchen n’ my Mom was also standing at the sink washing dishes n’ I could see the TV from where we were standing. There was a man on TV singing, dancing n’ gyrating and I told my Mom at that moment, pointing on the TV “that’s what I want to do”. Fast forward a few years later I found out it was none
other than Tom Jones, I love his music. Last but not least the great ‘Voice’ – Whitney Houston – whom I grew up with, my pop idol. I love n’ miss her so much. I paid a tribute to her, singing one of her songs n’ talking about her death, on ‘YouTube “Where Do Broken Hearts Go”. It’s one of my favorite songs, so I included it on my EP (track #5). R.I.P. Whitney, Nuff Luv.
What are some of your favorite songs currently?
Currently i’ve been listening to ‘Jah Cure’, always ‘Beres Hammond’, ‘Shaggy’ n’ gospel music shout out to ‘Liv Black n’ her crew at ‘WLIB AM/NY’. In gospel music I love ‘Jekalyn Carr n’ Hezekiah Walker to name a few.
What are your favorite spots in NYC we need to check out?
I don’t hang out a lot but when I do I like to go to stage shows – any of the popular ones that come to town, just put it this way my best hangout spot is at home with family n’ friends.