Eddy Grant is a world-renowned singer, producer, songwriter, and founder of Ice Records, a recording studio in Barbados where mega Caribbean performers including the Mighty Sparrow, Calypso Rose, David Rudder and Lord Kitchener recorded hit records.
Just recently, the mega superstar returned to his homeland of Guyana, to release his new album, “Plaisance” named for the village on the East Coast of Demerara where he was born.
The 14-track release, after 11 years of touring the world, includes “Mind the Gap,” “Now We’re All Together,” “I’m The One” and “True to You” — an up-beat lyrical composition that tells the story of the singer’s upbringing in Guyana. The video for “True to You” showcases various historic sites including the monumental Kaieteur Falls.
Grant, who released 13 compilation albums and 19 singles, with “Killer on the Rampage” reaching number 10 on the Billboard 200 chart in the United States, became gold, is no doubt thrilled to be in his country of birth, after images surfaced on social media showing “Plaisance” singer with locals in Georgetown restaurants.
The dreadlocked musician left Guyana to live with his parents in the United Kingdom at age 12, later becoming a trailblazer who co-founded “The Equals,” one of the UK’s first multiracial pop groups back in the 60’s that recorded “Baby Come Back.” He later became a solo act with breakout hits “Killer On The Rampage,” “Walking On Sunshine” and “Paintings of the Soul.”
With mega hits like Electric Avenue, Living on the Front Line and Romancing the Stone, the iconic 69-year-old singer, who owns a sprawling property on Ringbang Island in the majestic Essequibo region, said he has always returned to Guyana through his music.
In an interview with Visit Guyana Magazine, Grant said after he had written “Gimme Me Hope Jo’anna” lyrics to describe apartheid divided South Africa — he was asked why he didn’t write “Gimme Me Hope Guyana” and he replied, “because I know somewhere in my heart, Guyana is not a lost cause.”
The master musician, who produced under his famous Carriage House Studios in London, Ice Records, and Blue Waves, said the time had come to write an entire album specifically about Guyana, adding that it took him a while to gather the songs that would live together on “Pleasance.” He promised to record one about the Essequibo as well “because I have seen certain things about that place that I think makes it special in the world. It’s magnificent.”
“Guyana is really everything, I can put Guyana against any country in the world — Guyana means a lot to me because it has given me a lot. It’s given me my mother, my father, my family, and a lot of my values. And where Guyana has gone wrong, I also have the right to say that. Just like if I go wrong somebody has the right to say, Eddy you’re wrong,” stated the musician.
Grant said he always gets a great reception when he walks the streets of Guyana. “Where else in the world can you see your superstar, your artist on the road?,” asked the multi-instrumentalist. Grant said he goes to Shant’s Restaurant to pick up Potato Ball, Roti Curry, and visits the fruit vendors in Bourda Market, Stabroek Market and Parika Market.
Describing himself, as having the energy of a 19-year-old, Grant noted that he has been working on his autobiography for some time now, and added it would be in three parts. He then quipped that it wouldn’t be sex, drugs and rock and roll, because there is very little sex and no drugs. “It will be a manual for living according to a Guyanese boy from Plaisance,” he added.