HANDS UP: The deejay giving a high praise during his 40-minute set at First Fest.
The past few years have been tough for Prodigal Son. As we all know, the ace deejay, known for his hard-hitting lyrics and clever rhymes, exited the gospel scene in 2014 to make a foray into roots reggae. Though the move showed off his versatility as a creative artiste and introduced him to a wider audience (he performed on shows like Rebel Salute), it failed to spark a new dimension to his success as a recording star.
The detractors had a field day. It comes with the territory. But the entertainer (born Calvin Whilby) stayed strong. Today, in spite of the flak, he’s hard at work reclaiming his place in the gospel music fraternity and, by his own admission, having die-hard supporters in his corner fortified his determination and boosted his resilience. “The fans have been there for me. They never forsake me,” Prodigal tells TALLAWAH, moments after thrilling hundreds of those same fans with an electric performance at First Fest, inside the Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre on Monday night.
As a measure of his gratitude, he’s thinking of letting the fans choose a title for his new album, to which he’s now putting the finishing touches. It’s tentatively scheduled for a late February release. Unsurprisingly, it’s a project he’s immensely proud of. For one thing, it finds him joining forces with a veteran collaborator. “It’s Danny Browne and Prodigal Son in collaboration,” he gushes. “The album is untitled right now. Maybe I can ask the fans, and they’ll tell me.”
Meanwhile, the 40-plus deejay, who appears to be in the pink of health, says the just-concluded year was a satisfying one. “It was an awesome year for me. I went to England, across the entire Caribbean and the United States,” he shares. “And I give thanks that I’ve crossed over to 2017.”
These days, he’s giving back through mentorship (working with at-risk youth), among other initiatives. But crafting a stellar album for his people commands the lion’s share of his focus. Naturally. It’s a token of his gratitude to the fans.