What do you get when you meld Stevie Wonder, Prince, Pharrell Williams, Michael Jackson, Beach Boys, Queen? = Jodie Abacus.
British singer Jodie Abacus came to Manchester’s The Deaf Institute last month to kick off his UK tour in stunning fashion. Not many contemporary artists can boast the eclectic, quaintly addictive and charming musical tones that the South Londoner has.
Snatching the opportunity to have an exclusive chat with the man whose music gained praise from Sir Elton John, TNT headed over to The Deaf Institute to speak to Jodie before he got on stage.
With his latest single ‘I’ll be that friend’ already exceeding over 1.5 million plays on Spotify, perhaps the aptness of the title is best pictured by Jodie’s life prior to being signed to Household Records.
“I’ve done a lot of work in schools, after-school clubs. I worked in schools where some of the children were autistic, and some had special needs. I worked there full time for about 4 years”, the effortlessly pleasant singer told TNT.
Although Jodie’s currently in the studio putting the finishing touches to his debut album, his UK headline tour will most probably leave people impatient for his album release. With ‘Age of Luna’ and ‘Ekkah’ warming up the crowd with old-school RnB, Hip Hop and House soundbites in equal measure, Jodie stunned the crowd with soothing soulful notes that packed a punch akin to Stevie Wonder and Prince.
Within seconds of his set on stage, it was a certified fact that Jodie Abacus is the British soul singer everyone needs to know about. Aptly put, he is unique and incredibly affecting.
It has been a long journey to get to where he is however, with his music set to become hugely inspirational for a genre that’s hardly been prodded with a stick by modern artists. “Through the years I did anything it took to build the finances to buy equipment for myself. It’s just been an absolute adventure”, Jodie explained.
Driving him through the tribulations he faced when he nearly died from pneumonia was, “The absolute will to succeed. The absolute thought along the journey that there must be a purpose to why I am here. At the very least, I want to be able to love and inspire people, and that’s just being real”.
“I’ve been through a lot and our world is already a messed up place as it is. I just want to be honest, tell the truth and do those two things [love and inspire people]”.
When it comes to diversity within the music industry’s record labels, Jodie said he had to expel the thought and weariness of not being signed due to his race. “I always believed I would be signed. I didn’t see my representation on television or radio but I had to expel that thought. ‘If this world has anything to do with hard work, determination and will, then I should get what I want’. It’s just a matter of time and this time is happening now”.
TNT Entertainment Yasin Chinembiri