By Steven Odeke
Sometimes this task of reviewing a rapper casts you in a position you don’t really fancy. Having listened to lots of rappers overtime, comparing them against each other is quite inevitable.
While it’s true some rappers have spoilt the art, killing the rhyming and poetry aspect of it, some have really attempted to match those who lived in the game before.
When I got this lad, Paul Omiria, a.k.a Jay P’s music and listened to his song Credibly Evident, a thought to listen to Tupac’s posthumous song Thugz Mansion with Eric Clapton popped up.
It was the urge to feel the fit-in on a popular beat. While Tupac had Eric Clapton’s Tears From Heaven chorus fly perfectly alongside his rap, Jay P soared high on one of Teddy Pendergrass’ beat, whoever gave him the idea to do it knows his stuff.
Or if he decided it upon himself to toy with the legendary crooner’s song, his understanding of past music will help him plough the music ground.
The thing is, this lad can rap. He is a fine free-flowing rapper. Why he hasn’t broken in the rapping sphere in Uganda so far is not because he has terrible music, his music is actually good when you listen in the first or last time.
He is yet to break through because the local media is yet to pick out his music.
Born in a family of eight children, Jay P says his mother Josephine Epeju was so strict with her children and wanted them to focus on their education first.
“My mum was a very strict woman she instilled the reading and learning culture in me. That’s how we grew up speaking fluent English. She raised us with strict emphasis on discipline and that upbringing has worked wonders for me today. I learnt the meaning of being focused, a very important element in any human being,” assures Jay P.
By the age of six, the young Jay P sniffed music and decided to taste its waters. Immediately, he decided to get a name he would use for his music. A stage name.
He decided on Jay P, a short one for John Paul, the name his peers used to call him and made him cringe.
He has a thing for genres like jazz, rock, hip-hop and R&B. Perhaps that bears evidence for his rapping.
The raps in the song President have that cryptic pop poetry that draws vacillating emotion.
Compares himself to past and current State presidents like Abraham Lincoln, Idi Amin, Milton Obote and his “Afro”, the young Museveni.
It’s a thorough song. There’s Can I kick It, 4 By 4, Political Bureau and many other wonderfully produced and delivered tracks.
He released his “The Unreleased Cut” album in 2011 and placing them online for his fans to access.
This is the boy who was expelled from school when seventeen for absenteeism and decided to pursue his music.
Life after school hauled him into crime dungeon where he sold drugs and was involved in several notorieties. However, in 2005, he snapped out of that terrible lifestyle and started pursuing his music.
When you listen to his song “Credibly Evident” you will realize some lyrics were partly inspired by the thuggish lifestyle he encountered once.
He says in his lyrics “I came from the street/ Iam trying to escape my past/put selling dope behind/trying to pick up my pieces/live a life with the law/ I am trying to see sense in that.”