Thursday, 17 October 2019 15:14

Highly Favrd1 begs Jamaicans to 'Remember the Yam'

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Toronto-based gospel artiste Highly Favrd1 is ecstatic about the response to her debut EP featuring six songs showcasing the genres of calypso, Afrobeat, gospel and reggae. 
 
"The EP has a festival song, two gospel songs, two pro-Raptor basketball songs and a tribute to mothers. It's a really diverse compilation encompassing the beautiful message of Christ. I released it not knowing what to expect," she said.  
 
She has got the biggest response so far to the lead song from the EP, 'Remember the Yam' - a nostalgic song reminiscing about the island's roots. She began to gain traction among radio disc jockeys in Canada, she did a press run in Jamaica where she did several interviews on major radio stations including  IRIE FM, Mello FM, TBC and Love FM, and and she got a great reception. 
 
"Barry G heard the song , loved it and started playing it, Mutabaruka heard it and asked for the Yam song and began playing it, everything has just been happening naturally. The song has a great message that one must never forget their roots and never throw stone behind them," she said.  
 
The EP also features two prop-Raptors basketball songs to mark the historic NBA championship win earlier this year.
 
"When the Raptors won the championship on my birthday, and the city went wild, I decided to go into the studio and I recorded and released a song called 'Golden State Got Whopped', and it got on the radio, and everyone was playing it," the artiste whose real name is NeKesha Ann-Marie Blake said, laughing.
 
Highly Favrd1 recently performed in  Toronto alongside  Minister Marion Hall on Sept 7th. She is an incredible singer capable of searing and powerful vocals, and on her gospel songs, she possesses a singular ability to use melody and lyrics to describe the powerful experiences she has encountered while in the presence of God. 
 
Born in Kingston, Jamaica, she attended St. Hugh's High School for Girls but migrated to Canada at age 14 in 1995. She attended Downsview Secondary in Toronto and then matriculated to George Brown College where she read for a diploma in nursing. She is now lives in Ontario, Canada with her two children and her mother where she works as a nurse. 
 
She is already preparing to release a Christmas single, "All about the Christ Child", which will be released in November. Highly Favrd1 hopes that her music will ignite a change in people's hearts, and invite God’s presence to stay with His people, eventually sparking a global healing. 
 
"My goal is to use my songs to drive home the message of Christ's love for all, and to bring peace, cheer and encouragement to all," she said. 
 
 
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