It has been 37 years since Bob Marley passed away, but he remains a renowned reggae icon. His music on the other hand, from his conscious lyrics to revolutionary anthems, is deeply rooted in Jamaican culture. It radiates throughout the works of the generations that followed, including singer Maurice Tha General who has been able to keep the reggae music culture alive in Kenya.
“I personally grew up listening more to Bob Marley and the Wailers’ music. Through their style of music, my interest in reggae grew even stronger and I later came to learn about the new school reggae dub and the daily evolving reggae riddims,” Maurice told Spice in an interview.
He added that Bob Marley’s close-to-prophet status has been an inspiration to him, because of how his (Marley’s) music continues to to touch people even when some don’t fully understand the lyrics or doctrines of the Rasta movement.
Maurice did what most of what young aspiring artistes would, getting a producer who would help in creating the kind of vibe that would suit his music interest. After a long search and many disappointments from musical creators, he decided to sharpen his skills and learn how to produce and create his own reggae sound.
He said, “I learnt how to produce and create different sounds, hence the birth of my first reggae single titled Not Again. It celebrates the African woman.”
The singer says reggae music is simple and whereas the focus can be on the singer, it’s possible to connect to the topics being tackled in a song. “Simplicity can be a form of beauty and reggae music is simply that,” he said.
As he has been vocal for many years about his love for reggae music, he says it has grown to this exceptionally rich musical culture, and especially reflected the growing influence of Rastafari in urban Jamaica.
“Reggae’s heartbeat — rhythm and lyrics — is about love, redemption and natural living, which have over the years continued to captivate audiences worldwide. This is actually a good platform that has introduced reggae artistes, the Rasta culture and Rastafari “levity” to the world,” said Maurice.
Besides being a reggae musician, Maurice Tha General has built his brand as a music promoter and talent manager. His career took off in 2013 when there was a big demand for talent management. He has since worked with artistes such as Redsan, Eddy Kenzo, Stonebwoy, Kidum, Arrow Bwoy, Jua Cali, KRG The Don, Kajairo, Obinna, Susumila and Kelele Takatifu, among others.