ART & LIFE: The entertainer on his craft and career.
German-born singer Gentleman ranks among today’s attention-worthy reggae stars that don’t shy away from incorporating a sense of spirituality in their music. But Gentleman’s case is made all the more special by the fact that his dad is a minister of religion back home. In a recent sit-down with MTV Iggy in New York, he was asked whether he and his old man share a similar worldview when it comes to the dual concepts of religion and spirituality.
“It’s different because I believe in God but not in a church. But there are similarities too, and it’s nice to discuss with him. Very interesting. It’s very radical but sweet,” Gentleman admits. “I think that the thought is the same, and the destination is supposed to be the same, being closer to God or energy, or Jah, or whatever you wanna call it. But for me I never found God in a church, I found it in music. I found God in travelling. I found God in nature. I found God in the diversity of things.”
As it happens, Diversity is the title of Gentleman’s latest studio effort (released by VP Records), a mixture of soulful roots reggae and hard-hitting socio-political commentary. “It’s like following my inner voice. It’s a surprise where it leads you to. You don’t have to be in Jamaica to make good music, but for me this is the motherland, with a high concentration of the music,” Gentleman says of bringing a sense of authenticity to his brand of reggae.
“The lyrics you hear are my personal thoughts, and this is what I would call authentic. I see myself more as a cosmopolitan than a German. I think we need to stop thinking like that. My son is 11 now, and if I look in his class there are 32 kids and 17 nationalities. We should think more globally and universally and see that we’re all small in God’s world. Our mind is too small too. There will always be questions that we cannot answer, but we don’t need to.”