Mel Cooke, Freelance Writer
- winston sill
Nadine Sutherland's most recent album is Call My Name and that will certainly happen once, possibly twice, and just maybe thrice, on Sunday, May 30, at the Jamaican-Canadian Centre, 995 Arrow Road, Toronto.
Call My Name is nominated for the Top Reggae CD/Album (International), with the single Big Tingz from the set being tipped for Best Reggae Single (International) in the 21st Canadian Reggae Music Awards (CRMA).
Tarrus Riley with Parables (album) and She's Royal (single), as well as Da'Ville with On My Mind (album) and Always on My Mind (single, along with Sean Paul) are also double nominees.
While the name-calling for the final nod is yet to be determined, one is assured, as Sutherland told The STAR that "they are giving me a Merit Award for my contribution to reggae music". In addition, she is one of the performers, along with Tony Rebel and a number of Canada-based artistes.
"You look at it and you step out and you feel a sense of pride," Sutherland said about the nominations.
"I am happy because I stepped out and I think a lot of people at one stage were doubting my place in the music industry," Sutherland said. "Some people did not want to go with what my spirit was saying," she said of some producers who resisted the musical direction she was heading in.
She said it was critical "for me to take control of my life, take control of my business" and, in making Call My Name with the Florida-based 876 Records, not denying her fun and dancehall side but also "not lying about that deep, passionate side of my nature ...".
"I was authentic."
Sutherland points out that Call My Name has been met with "not only critical acclaim, but we sold some records", pointing out that it topped the charts in South Florida and went to number three in New York and Jamaica. "We had a dream and worked very hard," she said of the team.
"You accomplish something that you put your all in and change the course of your destiny ... Me feel sorta proud," Sutherland said. "I've made myself a force to be reckoned with."
The landmark may be all the sweeter, as Sutherland turned 40 years old on Saturday. "It is a great 40th birthday present and a great validation for me ... It is a great present at this age," she said.
In a highly visual age where female entertainers, especially, are recruited young and expected to stay that age forever, Sutherland demands "who dictates to anyone when your career is supposed to end and when it is supposed to start? What you have is the talent God gave you and you have to work that talent".
And she responds "not at all" when The STAR asks if she feels out of place in the as-close-to-nearly-nubile-as-possible thrust.
"You make your own niche and do your stuff," she said. "It is amazing, some of the dancehall shows you go to and see people half your age rocking to Big Tingz. They respect you for your talent. Some say they respect you for your looks. It is flattering when people come up to me and say they are fans. Not because of Action back in the day, but Big Tingz.
"You have fans from 11 (when Sutherland won the Tastee Talent Contest), you have fans from Action, you have fans from this stage."
And there is another stage to come, as Nadine Sutherland says she is currently doing a lot of dancehall recordings. Among the producers she has worked with are Snow Cone (Promises), Dean Fraser (For You) and Arif Cooper (Down on My Bended Knees), with the possibility of projects with Kurt Riley and Stephen McGregor.
"That is what my latest evolution is," she said.
It catches up with another cycle of her life, as in April it is into another season of Digicel Rising Stars.