Weeks after he dropped his Living the Dream single, which was rubbished by Popcaan, Usain Bolt is insisting that his music career is no joke, and this will be proven when he releases his upcoming EP, which set the stage for him to become an international Dancehall superstar.
“Music-wise we are working on some new riddims to drop soon. Now with the whole pandemic, we’re not trying to rush anything. We taking our time to make sure the music comes out at the right time, so that’s the focus. We also have a EP that we are working on so that should be something interesting and also to look out for,” Bolt stated during a recent interview on Zip 103 FM.
The announcement of the EP had first been made by his manager Nugent ‘NJ’ Walker in early January, during an interview with veteran entertainment journalist Anthony Miller on Television Jamaica’s weekly program, The Entertainment Report.
In the Zip FM interview, Bolt said his world domination musical quest will be slow and steady, similar to his ascension in track and field where he, over time, became a global sprinting superpower.
“That’s the major goal yuh know, to try to get to not only dominate not only the Jamaican market, but also to get into the international market, but as I said it takes time,” William Knibb High School old boy said.
“We’re just trying to get a foothold, trying to make people understand that we’re not just here joking around. We’re serious about the music so we’re just going to take our time, just like in track and field, it’s all about work and dedicating and just taking our time. We don’t want to rush into anything, make any mistakes, so we gonna take our time. We will get there. We believe in ourselves, and we believe in the product that we’re putting out there,” the 34-year-old added.
His statements that his music is no joke, might be a mechanism to stave off more criticisms of being restless and nomadic, like in 2017, when after retiring from track and field, he attempted to launch a career as a professional footballer with several football teams in Norway, Germany and Australia, before jettisoning those plans and declaring in early 2019 that his sports life was over.
Bolt’s Living the Dream single, which was a collab with NJ dominated the news in early January, after Popcaan, having listened to an excerpt which the sprinter had shared on Instagram, implied that NJ, who did most of the vocals, lacked musical acumen. The Unruly Boss had also admonished Bolt to help ‘some youth wid real musical talent’ because “them dey ya nuff”.
The song was also jeered by retired West Indies cricketer Marlon Samuels, who reposted a video of a local comedian mocking the song and dismissing it as f-ckery.
Music selector Foota Hype though, had defended Bolt, arguing that NJ ought not to be dismissed for his musical efforts and labeled Popcaan’s criticism as an attention-seeking move. He said Bolt was already doing charitable work across Jamaica, and, like other Jamaican sportsmen, should be left to pursue whatever ventures he wants, at his own leisure, and spend his money as he pleases, just as Popcaan had been doing unfettered.
In response to Popcaan’s sentiments, NJ had also sought to defend himself and Bolt during The Entertainment Report interview, claiming that the song was recorded in a bid to help Rajah, an aspiring producer, who was creator of the Olympe Rosé beat to achieve his dreams.
The Olympe Rosé, which was executive-produced by Bolt, entailed a series of songs featuring his friends Christopher Martin, Ding Dong, Munga Honorable, Dexta Daps, and retired international footballer Ricardo ‘Bibi’ Gardner.
NJ’s statements about the producer, who happens to be the sprinter’s cousin Rajah “Plugs” Nelson, having it hard even after Olympe Rosé, were contrary to those made by Bolt in an interview with The Star tabloid in 2019, a few months after its release. Bolt had told the tabloid that Olympe Rosé was doing well, as international companies had been contacting his team trying to secure the rights to the trap-influenced dancehall beat for games and documentaries.