Ja­heim likes the ladies

CityPress - - News -

In the mid­dle of the week, US crooner An­thony Hamil­ton popped into the City Press of­fices ahead of his Joburg show on Fri­day night. Then came the din­ner date – not just with Hamil­ton, but with his fel­low US R&B soul singer Ja­heim, who’s been fly­ing un­der the radar for some time. At their wel­come din­ner at the Metro Restau­rant in Ben­more, Sand­ton, cour­tesy of Bisquit Cognac, Du­misane Lu­bisi broke bread with the singers and quizzed Ja­heim about his first visit to South

Africa. What brings you here? What brings me to South Africa is to touch base with my fans. I am here to get fa­mil­iar with my fans and give them what they came to see.

Why now? I said the same thing ear­lier be­cause there have been many tragedies through­out the world, so that pre­vented us from trav­el­ling to dif­fer­ent re­gions. So it has taken me some time, but I’ve been ready to come to South Africa for some time. You have been off the radar for a while. Why was that and what is your come­back strat­egy? It isn’t that I was away from mu­sic. I lost my grand­mother in 2011. Af­ter she passed on, I spent maybe a year or so with my fam­ily. And af­ter that I kinda tran­si­tioned my­self to be­com­ing my own en­tity. So I started my own com­pany, Julies Dream Mu­sic Group, signed him [point­ing at singer NiXta sit­ting next to him] maybe three months ago.

( Ja­heim ac­tu­ally started the com­pany in 1997, then reestab­lished it in 2002 and re­booted it this year.)

So this has been a plan for a long time. I kinda knew that I was gonna be a free agent even­tu­ally and when it was gonna come, all right, I was gonna go do my own thing. And here I am. Your song Put That Woman First was a hit. How does it res­onate with your per­for­mance here while South Africa is com­mem­o­rat­ing Women’s Month? Put That Woman First for me was re­ally a break­through. I was in the game even more when that record came out be­cause women of all cul­tures, all over the globe, just ap­pre­ci­ate that song. I got all kinds of Bill­boards [record charts], awards, it was a big record. And com­ing back to my new al­bum of 2013, we still ap­pre­ci­at­ing that.

I ap­pre­ci­ate my women and so I de­cided to make Age Ain’t A Fac­tor (a hit sin­gle from his lat­est al­bum Ap­pre­ci­a­tion Day), which is vice versa to Put That Woman First. It is all about women. What is it like shar­ing a stage with Hamil­ton? Me and An­thony are real good peo­ple. Real good friends. We have a strong re­la­tion­ship. We started tour­ing to­gether with my last record back in 2012 and 2013. We have a warm re­la­tion­ship, he’s like my brother, you know.

PHOTO: LUN­GELO MBUL­WANA

Ja­heim per­form­ing at The Dome in Jo­han­nes­burg

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