His debut music video has just landed and he is here in America to perform for the first time, so America, meet King Lion Miguel!
SRS: Welcome to America! What are you most excited to see during your time here?
“Thanks, always give thanks! English is not my native language; my native Language is French. So please forgive me if there are any mistakes in my expressions. As you know, it’s my first time to America, the land of dreams. I’m very excited to see everything over there. Frankly speaking, I think I’ll be like a little boy in the candy store.”
SRS: How would you best describe your sound?
“Well, I’m not limited to a specific genre or sound. Reggae is my love and main style of music but in every type of music, if there’s a reggae or African vibe approach, I’m in it to promote my roots and the African culture.
If it’s dance hall, I do my thing on it, to make people dance and feel good. If it’s a cool reggae vibe and I think I can promote and educate, then I go for it. I stick to the reggae genre because of its positive and feel good message.”
SRS: So, debut American performance with Shaggy. How did that relationship come about?
“The relationship started when IMCG Productions and Shi Records decided to sign me as its artist, a reggae singer, and it’s a good way to promote their only reggae artist living in China. Shaggy is probably one of the most respected and well-known reggae artists of all time. For a reggae artist from Cameroon this is truly a dream come true for me and one I will never forget.”
SRS: How does your native Cameroon compare to China where you currently reside?
“Cameroon is not a developed country, and China is much more developed, of course. The difference is huge economically, politically, even culturally. And, musically, China is a big market of opportunities. If I was still living in my country, selling my mum’s peanuts or chips on the streets, or singing for friends like I used to, do you really think I would be talking to you today? Or I would get the recognition I have today? I am blown away and deeply humbled and honored.
Now when they talk about reggae music they talk about me, when they talk about movies, they talk about me. And now I will be coming to AMERICA and have an opportunity to perform with the great Shaggy, who is my idol! I am thrilled beyond words. Undiluted respect to IMCG Productions/Shi Records who are now bringing my music and my life to another level.”
SRS: You speak English, French, and Mandarin. Do you write music in all three?
“Yeah, I do, the former President of South Africa, Nelson Mandela, said, “when you speak to someone with a foreign language you can reach his understanding, but if you speak to someone in his own language you reach his heart”. Therefore, I always try to write my songs in each language to make more people understand me. I am currently pursuing my Master’s degree in International Relations at Beijing Linguistic University. The text books are both in Mandarin and English.”
SRS: You have an LP set to release in February. Can you tell us anything about it?
“My new LP is called “Solitary Lion”. The title track “Solitary Lion” is about my life, my journey, my debut, my joy, my sorrow, my relationships with friends, with family, and with the most High. And when I say “my” or “I”, I’m talking about the people in my ghetto youth, most of them identify themselves and come to life in my lyrics. I believe that Jah helps and hard work makes everything possible.”
SRS: What inspired you to get into music?
“As you know, music is VERY powerful. As someone who grew up in the church and living in extremely bad conditions, music helped me escape from the Babylon system I grew up in. My mum was a very good vocalist as well. I used to be in the background listening to her sing as she warmed our food. I watched and listened every day as she sang with joy even in times that there was no joy, and that truly inspired me and gave me great hope. I knew then that I wanted to share my experiences with the world through my music.”
SRS: What do you hope us Americans take away from your music?
“I want people to know that there’s reggae music in Africa. There’s reggae music in Cameroon. Jamaica is well-known for reggae, but the roots of reggae are in Africa. Today, I’m a representative of reggae but I’m not the first one or the only one.
What you can take away from my music and my lyrics is positivity, hope, pure mind, love, peace, and unity. Long live reggae, long live IMCG Productions. Jah bless y ‘all jah family.”