Jody Smith embodies the spirit of a creative. Throughout his childhood, his art was used as his outlet. The only difference now is that his medium of expression has expanded.
When this barber is not busy pleasing his clientele with his intricate designs in their precision cuts, he is churning out beautiful portraits across his social media pages, which emphasize an obvious attention to detail.
However, it is his music that dominates these platforms. Though his dreams of becoming an architect are now a distant memory, his aspirations of becoming a successful recording artiste continue to fuel him.
As was the case for many of the island’s leading musicians, his love for the stage germinated when he unearthed his vocal talent at the age of 14, when he entered the Richard Stoute Teen Talent Competition.
Twenty years later, he is still reaching new heights, having recently signed a sync licensing agreement with the international company Music of the Sea, which has locations in both Chicago and Los Angeles.
He is excited by this new opportunity and told Bajan Vibes: “I am going to be working on more releases and maybe work on an album.”
Though exuding a quiet confidence, Smith admits that he was not always at ease in the limelight. “I am actually quiet and introverted, but music has made me comfortable with opening up and just being free to express myself.”
In a fast-paced world, music brings him solace. He loves being able to create and share a part of him that is going to last forever and enjoys being able to see the connections that people have with his work.
There are no hints of shyness when the performer hits the stage. Local audiences have gotten a taste of Smith’s talent as a spotlight artiste at the popular Mahalia’s Corner. He has been a regular at the Hilton Open Mic sessions and is highly visible on the hotel circuit. He is also a hit with the ladies and his boyish good looks, paired with his smooth vocals and sensual style, earn him rave reviews.
“I think my music is soothing and uplifting. Most of the time I have been told that it puts you ‘in your feelings’. When I am onstage, it does not feel like work, it feels like fun.”
Despite the ebbs and flows throughout his career, Smith has no doubts that music is where he is meant to be. The vocalist believes that every artiste encounters some internal and external challenges, whether they stem from self-doubts or finances.
“I take baby steps every day and stay true to my craft and what I am trying to create. I do it for the love of it.”
His musical journey has been filled with numerous peaks. “I have met some really cool people, learned and shared a lot with my fellow artistes, created good friendships and inspired some.”
A profound love of music courses through his veins. He is inspired by an eclectic mix of artistes and draws something different from each of them. Bob Marley and Michael Jackson’s work ethic and their innate ability to deliver timeless messages encourage him to strive for the same.
Marvin Gaye, Al Green, Stevie Wonder and Bill Withers are considered legends for this songwriter who admires their soothing tones and vocal abilities. Cumulatively, they boost his determination to excel.
If Smith has his wish, there will be some collaborations with 2Mile Hill, Ch’An, Marzville or Hypasounds in the works for him.
Success is a must and as he ticks off his heavily stacked to-do list, his eyes are focused on the prize. (STT)