[INTERVIEW] Jimmy Nevis: The Masses…

Jimmy Nevis
Credit: Earl Martin Photography

South African, alternative pop singer Jimmy Nevis just released his latest album The Masses. I managed to ping him a few questions at the end of last year (Jimmy Nevis 2013 interview) to learn more about his music. With his new album is just 2 weeks old, I caught up with him again to learn about his latest music:

BCTC: You talk of being the pop soundtrack to people’s lives. Who was the pop artist that provided the soundtrack to some of your best memories?
JN: I always loved listening to Jason Mraz when I was growing up – John Mayer is perfect for any holiday fantasy. Alicia Keys was also very big in my house because of my sister. Other artist that I’ve loved over the years is Coldplay, Jamie Cullum, The Script and Drake.

BCTC: You’ve worked with numerous other South African artists. What did you learn from them?

JN: I’ve learnt that diversification can open up so many doors for you. It was through collaborating with Pascal and Pierce that I was able to perform at Ultra Festival last year. It was through the collaboration with Mi Casa that I was able to perform in Alexander Township. Both experiences were amazing and they both experiences that I could not have had if it weren’t for those collabs. It’s also amazing to see how other artists work – most of the time we do what feels right, not because it necessarily is right.

BCTC: You’ve been picked up by American label Ultra who will distribute your music in the States. Have you travelled much and when you do, what perspective does it give you on your music?

I have travelled a lot within South Africa and I’ve been to a few places in Asia but nothing as big as the States or Europe just yet. I think traveling with your music really develops your identity as an artist – you get to experience what other people are listening to and learn from them. It is only beneficial.

BCTC: All South African musicians are inspired by “1st world” artists to some degree. What do you think the key is to getting the “1st world” to notice how strong South African music is?

JN: That’s a tough question because it’s not as clean cut as just music – but nationality, stereotypes and perceptions have a large role to play in getting noticed as well, and getting noticed by genre as oppose to being categorized as an “African Act.” I think the key to getting noticed is to be yourself and believe in who you are. I believe that timing is everything and once the time is right, the moment will come.

BCTC: What artist or group are you a fan of that would surprise your fans?

JN: I’m not the most outrageous fan when it comes to One Direction, but they make such catchy music. The Story of my life is just too good. Damn those boys and their catchy lyrics!

BCTC: To those South Africans who aren’t familiar with your music, how would you like to introduce yourself to them and why should they support your music?

JN: I am not about the sound of music as am about the feel of music. It’s poor, rich, classy and immature all at the same time – and I’m proud of that. My music is mainly pop and it’s about you and your life. I’d appreciate if you checked out my music on iTunes or on YouTube. May you forever feel inspired.

Thanks so much to Jimmy for giving up his time to answer these questions. Make sure you check out his latest album The Masses with an album launch in Cape Town on the horizon. Keep up to date with details on the Jimmy Nevis Facebook Page and don’t forget to support local music because…local is lekker. 🙂

Jimmy NEvis Smile

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