ART & LIFE: "You become a lot more aware of your goals," says the singer of getting older; (below) With fans at Keesing Live.
When gospel singer D-Murphy hits centrestage he unleashes a persona so full of life that you can’t help but bounce along to his unique blend of hosannas and spirit-lifting praise. What’s more, the 30-year-old exudes the experience and stagecraft of an entertainer twice his age and size (he stands at about 5’6”), which makes his artistry all the more compelling. After a few years on the gospel scene, D-Murphy is ready to formally introduce himself to Jamaica, with the impending release of The Framework, his debut EP that’s bound to help solidify his place among the new vanguard of Jamaican gospel music. TALLAWAH recently caught up with the new dad and former Papine High student (né Dwayne Murphy) to talk about flying solo as an independent artiste, becoming a father for the first time, and dealing with adversity.
TALLAWAH: You used to be a key member of the Radikal Yawd crew, but you’ve left that camp to fly solo. Is it scary being on your own right now?
D-Murphy: It can be. But who better to shape your career than you? I take care of all my management stuff, but I work with Spurr Music, who does my booking.
TALLAWAH: What has been the biggest adversity you’ve had to overcome?
D-Murphy: Believing in myself. When you become used to people telling you that you can’t, you start to doubt yourself, but once you believe that you can do whatever it is that you say you want to do, that confidence helps to get you through. So believing in myself was the biggest hurdle I’ve had to overcome.
TALLAWAH: How do you juggle all those responsibilities and still maintain your spiritual core?
D-Murphy: I have an amazing wife, Stephanie Murphy. She helps me stay grounded and humble. She’s my business partner, my life partner, and my best friend. She’s the one who tells me when I’m having a big head. (Laughs).
TALLAWAH: Gospel artistes are now releasing EPs with alarming regularity like everyone else. How essential is this medium in an artiste’s career today?
D-Murphy: I would say it’s become very essential. Sometimes you’re not ready to release a full album, but you don’t want to release just one song. With an EP you can experiment and introduce a variety of styles to your listeners. My EP that’s coming out soon is a good example, because it’s a mix of worship, R&B flavour, a little hip-hop and reggae.
TALLAWAH: You became a dad for the first time two weeks ago. Congrats! Are you ready for the adventure?
D-Murphy: I’m excited but a bit scared. Excited in the sense that I get to raise a son and protect and provide for him, but you become scared when you think of the world you’ll be bringing him up in. So I want to be a father who relies on God’s guidance, so my son will have that part of me to emulate as well.
TALLAWAH: How else has life changed for you, since you entered your 30s?
D-Murphy: I’m more of a doer. You become a lot more aware of your goals and the time factor. In a sense, maturity takes over.
TALLAWAH: Indeed. So what do you want your musical legacy to be ultimately?
D-Murphy: I want to do music that will last for generations. I want my songs to still be impacting people’s lives 50 years from now. I want people to say that he left something behind that is priceless; there’s heart in it and there’s truth in it.