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Tanya Stephens gives Ikaya advice

Tanya Stephens once made contact with singer Ikaya and demanded that she desist from the ‘beef’ path she was diverting her immense talent into.

Speaking at Tuesday’s Reggae Talk at the medical sciences complex, University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona, Stephens revealed how Ikaya’s voice gave her “goosebumps”.

“She no normal,” Stephens said. After seeing a video of her singing on television, Stephens searched for more on YouTube and decided “this is not a fake or an engineer” (making Ikaya sound good).

However, Stephens said, Ikaya lacked direction and had people convincing her that she had to take a particular path, so “me start hear some song pon beefing”. So Stephens got involved.

“Me find her pon Facebook and give her about a million words of reading. I say, ‘if you do one more song bout dat me buss you head,'” Stephens said, to laughter from the audience.

Stephens said she wanted to hear good songs on the radio, and Ikaya is one of the persons who can provide her with that.

Some time after they encountered each other on tour in Belgium, where Ikaya was doing harmonies for Alborosie and also singing some of her own songs. Stephens related that she told Ikaya to look around her, if she saw any of the persons she had been ‘beefing’ with. She didn’t.

“We a no butcher. We don’t do beef, we do music,” Stephens said.

She said she has also reached out to Ishawna and Tifa, but speaking with other performers is not something she does in public, like she is running a talent agency.

Stephens also spoke about Lady Saw and Queen Ifrica, saying that “when Lady Saw buss she was not the best female, she was just the best artiste. We do not get along, personally, but professionally, it is nuff respect. It is going to take 100 man (male performers) to make one Lady Saw.”

She also said it would take many male artistes to get to the calibre of one Queen Ifrica.

As for those women coming into the music business, Stephens said they should stop being told about image.

“It is good for page two. I have nothing against page two, it is what it is,” Stephens said.

“You have to understand the purpose you serve.”

“There is a girl out there named Ishawna, who is very talented with vocals. But people will pay more attention to her clothes.”

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