Young Barbadian hiphop artiste, Phillen, wants his music to fill listeners with powerful, positive vibes. Christened Philip Price, the 21-year-old describes his music as a feeling.
“I want for my listeners to understand it, catch a vibe from it,” said the Barbados Community College student in a recent interview with Bajan Vibes.
“I believe I was born and meant to do this, and certain aspects in life are just showing me that music is for me. It just seems like it’s supposed to be or it’s meant to be,” Phillen added, explaining why he chose this path.
He recalled that from the age of three, he had exposure to leading artistes like Earth, Wind & Fire through his father. Growing up in a musical household also meant not only listening to the classics.
A brother, Reynold Price, is an accomplished musician who specializes in playing the clarinet and is a graduate of the world-famous Berkeley College of Music.
It was at the age of 13 when Phillen realised that he was blessed with the special gift of song writing. “I started to write my first song at the age of 13 and that’s when I noticed I have a skill of writing because I could write about something but there is always a different meaning behind it,” he recalled.
Despite being signed to Island Mayhem Records at the age of 17, Phillen had to pause his musical career to fulfil his responsibilities as a student – studying for CSEC examinations.
Now, at the age of 21, his return is bittersweet as it was ignited by the sudden death of his close friend and fellow musician, Ryan Carrington, in June last year.
“He had asked me when I planned to return to music and I told him maybe soon, and then two weeks later after that question, I got news that he passed away,” Phillen recalled.
“So I was like wow . . . so that inspired me to start back doing music because I know that just feeling like it was something that I had to. Also the song that I just recently released, “Man of the City”, was inspired by him and someone else.”
In the music video of the said release, Phillen pays tribute to Carrington and also Timothy Inniss who fell overboard the MV Harbour Master last month. Since the song’s debut on September 2, there have been great reviews, revealed Phillen.
“I’ve had a lot of people walking up to me saying they like the video, they like the song, they just want more,” he said.
Although the feedback has been great, there is nothing better than when your own family is proud of your achievements, Phillen pointed out, describing how his father has been lauding his accomplishments.
“The other day I saw him…trying to search some stuff and he was trying to search the song on YouTube. It touched my heart in that moment, he’s trying to search my stuff and then he’s telling his friends that his son just released a music video,” Phillen noted with obvious pride in his voice.