Jamaican dancehall star Mr. Vegas hosted a listening session for his Bruk It Down 2.0 album at Rosewood (5 E. 19th) on September 23rd. The album, released on September 24th, was highly anticipated following the award-winning double CD, Sweet Jamaica. In an exclusive interview with ventwing.com’s Brownie Marie, Mr. Vegas discusses the incredible success of Sweet Jamaica, his newest release, Bruk It Down 2.0, and what’s next for his MV Music record label.
BROWNIE MARIE: You’ve had such success for years, worldwide success, and many accolades. Your last album, Sweet Jamaica, was incredibly successful: It was listed as one of the Top 50 Albums of 2012 (by Google Music), the song “Sweet Jamaica” won ‘Song of the Year’ at the 2013 International Reggae And World Music Awards (IRAWMA), and “Bruk It Down” won ‘Video of the Year’ at the 2013 IRAWMA’s. How does it feel having such accomplishments and having your fans supporting you after all these years?
MR. VEGAS: It’s a great feeling, especially when you work as hard as me. I just continue to work; I dedicate my music to the fans. I just give people music to enjoy themselves. The last album was well received. It had songs like “Sweet Jamaica” on it, “Bruk It Down” was on this album, and so forth. This album, [Bruk It Down 2.0], is like a party album. It’s like a follow up [to] the whole dancehall side of the Sweet Jamaica album. We added the “Bruk It Down” remix with Alison Hinds; it’s one of the party songs that people can’t get enough of. And then we had like 15 tracks [in addition to “Bruk It Down” remix], and we turned it into Bruk It Down 2.0.
You were talking about retiring several years ago, and you never did retire. You kept touring, kept putting out music. How are you doing healthwise?
I’m good healthwise. But sometimes, when you’re doing something, sometimes you just want to take that break. Especially when you think there are people that’s not really giving you that energy like you’re putting out. It seems like a 9-5, you know? These people are taking advantage because of what they can get. You don’t want to feel like that when you’re doing music. If I’m doing music and I’m not feeling the energy, I’m not feeling the vibe, I can’t do it. If I hit the stage, and the band is not playing the way I expect the band to play, then I feel like I’m not giving a 100%.
You won’t perform?
I’ll perform, but then I come off[stage] and end up cussing everybody out because I want the fans to get 100%. If we’re doing a DJ show, if the DJ mess up, [then] I’m giving him that look like: “C’mon, dog. This is for the people. They paid the money to come and see us, so we have to get it right.” That’s why the whole retirement thing just didn’t come about. [The single] “I Am Blessed” came out, and people were just feeling the music.
What’s new with MV Music? Do you plan to add more artists and expand to other genres?
We’re working with different artists… We’re working with Terri from St. Lucia, we have Renegade in Jamaica—he’s like a roots artists—so we are trying to give young artists a platform for themselves. And we’re still looking for that talent that we know is going to be the “next thing.” We’re open to doing music. If someone comes on board and we think they’re talented, of course we’re going to give them a start.
Mr. Vegas’ album release party and birthday party is Sunday, September 29th at The Buzz Night Club in Brooklyn, NY (103 Empire Blvd.)! Bruk It Down 2.0 is available in digital retailers nationwide, including iTunes and Amazon.
Special thanks to MarieDriven PR’s Monique Foster and Marie Theodore, and the staff of Rosewood Nightclub.