Maxi Priest talks with Tabou TMF
on Undefinable Vision TV (Part 2)
Maxi Priest talks with Tabou TMF on Undefinable Vision TV about his approach to choosing and doing cover songs on his albums, leaving his legacy and more…
Tabou TMF: How do you choose, or know that you’re going to sing a cover song, like you know you did Wild World, and you know you did Gravity on this album. What kind of resonates with you and you say yeah I know this is the song I wanna do?
Maxi Priest: I didn’t. I mean most of these songs that you’re calling, were songs that people brought to me, and people brought them to me and thought, “Yo max you can do a wicked job with this.” And then my approach in doing a cover is basically, taking the song and making it mine. You know somewhat digesting it, in such a way that, it was my song in the first place.
Tabou TMF: Yes, you do a great job at that.
Maxi Priest: And, so that’s my approach. But that’s also the reason, or how I got to do them. Because most people came to me with the idea or encouraging me to sing a particular song that they thought would be a big song for me. And Wild World was a song that I didn’t even like.
Tabou TMF: Really, Wow! Interesting.
Maxi Priest: You know, I did not like the song, and my manager at the time Erskine Thompson brought the song to me and was like “Yo kid, this is the song” and then Sly and Robbie and those guys said to me. “Yo! This is the song.” and even when I recorded it I recorded it very … I don’t really wanna do this. But, here I am today, a few years gone by going; I appreciate what this song has done for me.
Tabou TMF: Definitely, Yea it’s definitely a classic and when I listen to it, also like I said I was a selector for many years from then till now, any time that first few chords come on…
Maxi Priest: Yep! Deh – neh – neh – neeh!
Tabou TMF: And your voice comes in, dance mash up! You know that’s cool, that’s great but also I appreciate that story and knowing that, you know it’s always good to have people around you and to take advice from other people.
Maxi Priest: Well you know, I think you answered… You said the question and you answered it. It’s one thing in, people being around you and giving you advice. The key is, are you going to take some of it.
Tabou TMF: Right, Yeah.
Maxi Priest: You know what I’m saying. Or how you receive some of it. You know.
Tabou TMF: Right, definitely key.
Maxi Priest: So I guess I was stubborn but, I guess that I really give thanks for the fact that there was another side of me that said, just try it. You know.
Maxi Priest: Oh wow! A man of good intentions, somebody who can, who has a voice… a message of love, and encouragement. An inspiration to others.
Tabou TMF: Okay definitely, I could see that you already are. I definitely … I think that’s already kinda set there.
Maxi Priest: Well you know that’s if you… again you know self praises is no recommendation. That’s what I would like.
Tabou TMF: Right, good I hear you and I feel you definitely. So now I know people say you’ve been away for a while, but I know you haven’t been away, but as an artist you’re always doing stuff. You know that’s just the common, oh it’s been a decade since the last album or this and that. But now for one thing I’m glad that you’re here, now doing what you’re doing cause…
Maxi Priest: I’m on a high right now King.
Tabou TMF: That’s beautiful!
Maxi Priest: Honestly, this album here I feel so good about it, I have been blessed with this album. I feel like I can move mountains, the power, the confidence behind the support of this album from the folks, is just made me feel like … I’m here!
Tabou TMF: Alright!
Watch Maxi Priest talks with Tabou TMF (Part 2 of 3)
See and read more of the exclusive interview with Maxi in (Part 3)
Undefinable Vision “See Things Different”
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*This transcript has been edited for length and clarity. Original interview was filmed on location in New York City in July 2014 Additional background music produced by Tabou TMF for Undefinable Productions. All Rights Reserved.