The No-Maddz wants to be taken seriously

September 03, 2019
Major Lazer’s Walshy Fire (centre) with The No-Maddz members Everaldo Creary (left) and Sheldon Shepherd.
Major Lazer’s Walshy Fire (centre) with The No-Maddz members Everaldo Creary (left) and Sheldon Shepherd.

Members of roots-reggae band The No-Maddz believe many people miss the important topics covered in their music because they can't get pass their appearance and sound.

Band member Sheldon Shepherd told THE STAR that most times, people are distracted by the bright colours and the loud sounds.

"I do believe that some people miss the nuances ... you see nuances now and poetry, you have to read between the lines," Shepherd said. "When I say read, I don't mean literal read like you turning the pages of a book. It's about quieting the outside and focusing on whatever is at hand."

He says the band encodes messages into the music as poets, and expects the audience to decode them. He admits that often times they are compelled to explain themselves when they want to evoke behavioural change.

"Poets don't really like to explain a piece because when you explain a piece, you kill the furtherance of the piece for the individual. If people understood everything that we said, it would be a whole different positioning in the world for The No-Maddz," he said.

The other half of the band, Everaldo Creary, recalls a performance when he was forced to simplify the message in the song Wha Di s, widely known as Pukupoo.

"I remember I was doing a show for college students I think, and I pulled my verse back and did it again because I know Jamaicans have an issue with listening," he said. "When I diligently walked them through, it felt like I was at church but that time I'm the preacher explaining the Bible, and the Bible is this Pukupoo song."


Creary says that as artistes, they have to cater for all people, as the music is a product they are serving the people.

"Sometimes we have to spoon-feed them because in return, they become campaigners for the same enlightenment that you walk them through," Creary said.

The same misperception happens with other artistes, and both Shepherd and Creary agree that many artistes shy away from interacting with them because of what they believe they represent.

So when it comes to collaborations, they work with who works with them.

"The ones who are bold enough and brave enough, you will find like minds, ... you will find your tribe," Shepherd said.

Their new album Heaven On Earth, was released last Friday. The 12-track album features Atiba, Eriq Sterling, The Wixard, Idris Elba, Shadow, and Kumar.

The band is positive that once the messages in the music remain constant, the people who missed them will eventually get them.

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