By Makeida Antonio
During a period marked with numerous disruptions and uncertainties in Antigua and Barbuda’s entertainment industry, one local artiste hopes that his peers can stay motivated and still release songs to the public.
Art Philip, popularly known as Drastic, told Observer that the challenges, which are caused by the ongoing pandemic are being faced by artistes who write, produce and record music in Antigua and Barbuda. He also said that those factors that are preventing a steady stream of local music are dynamic.
Drastic pointed to a lack of finances and said it could be the reason why some may not have been picking up the pen, since Carnival celebrations have taken a hiatus.
However, he shared his observation of disk jockeys (DJs) in the twin-island complaining that there were not enough soca releases, although the dancehall genre seems to be picking up momentum in the country.
Drastic said that there are young artistes who have been releasing music, and more would do so if the public could show more love and support to them and become familiar with younger, newer artistes such as Niqko, Nikki Nooks, Jamal Gordon and others.
On Friday, Drastic released a music video to accompany his hit song, #1 on VEVO. He said the video was produced since May 2021, but he finally saw it fit to showcase his craft to the public.
“It is definitely more difficult to release as you would want to during Covid,” he said.
“You have to make your funds get up in a certain way, whereas before Covid you could kind of release at a quicker pace. What I have been doing though, and what I advise the other artistes to do is pretty much just using the time where everything was shut down and stay creative.”
He is also encouraging other artistes not to give up on productivity, despite the financial and social burdens which have presented themselves during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“I was not non-productive during this whole time; I did like a song every day since Covid and used that time to knock out a couple visuals for my other songs so that when the place opens back up, I would have new songs to drop.”
Meanwhile, Drastic thanked all those who contributed to the production and release of the #1 music video and hinted that there is more to come for 2022.
“#1 is the first out the gate for 2022. There’s lots more songs coming up where I show more of my singing side. People really like the singing vibe I notice.”