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Tanya Stephens - Reggae Rebelutionary

Author: 3D
Monday, 18 February 2008

The queen of Jamaican reggae, Tanya Stephens, is finally heading our way this February. 3D asks for the word up.
Regarding your most recent album, Rebelution - does it tackle different subject matter to your last release, Gangsta Blues-
Rebelution was released toward the end of 2006. I take on different topics and continue in the vein of discussions and the sparking of discussions.
The press shots for the album have you in militant garb a la Che Guevara, do you feel an affinity with his politics-
I deliberately stay away from taking sides with revolutionaries because every side in a war has both foes and allies. When you do not have all the facts first-hand it's not worth possibly offending someone who was wronged. However, I do relate to the general figure of every revolutionary. I do stand for what they basically represent, which is change.

The Gangsta Blues track It’s a Pity was very commercially successful, hitting the radio, video outlets and critical acclaim. What do you think it was about this track that really spoke out to the world-

I don’t know. I'm assuming by it's popularity that there is way more promiscuity in the world than I even realized! :-)
Your lyrics are autobiographical - how do you find the right blend between the serious and the comical-

I don’t TRY to do anything. I just go with whatever comes natural - I'm naturally serious and naturally comical.
Your albums blend acoustic ballads and heavy dancehall riddims – is your live show a similar deal, or is it more on the party tip-

It's similar
You’re coming to Australia very soon. What are you expecting from your visit-

That's always a hard question to answer. If I was coming on vacation I would say I intend to party and whoop it up, but I'm coming for performances so the boring truth is I wont really be able to tell one place different from another! I will enjoy being on stage and singing for people because I really, really love that and I'm happy for every chance I get to meet the people who support me face-to-face.
Finally, if you had to say one very important thing, what would it be-

Thanks is always the most important thing. Nobody owes me anything so the fact that people actually support me and love me is something I will be eternally grateful for! :-)

WHO: Tanya Stephens
WHAT: Playing the Great Northern / Oxford Art Factory
WHEN: Thursday 21 February / Saturday 23 February