Josh Osho is the next artist to talk about what inspires his music.
There is this enchanting charm and powerfully hypnotizing effect the blues has on me. I stumbled across my first portal into the blues through Muddy Waters, the acclaimed father of the electric Chicago blues, and ever since I have further fallen in love with the genre. It has had a huge impact on how I try to communicate my own music; I feel that the energy and the honest resonance of the blues is the only way to truly channel your essence into the world and connect. Historically, it has such a colourful and inspiring story to tell – from the African drums in the west coast to the hums and chants of the slave plantations, it’s the soundtrack to the foundations of America and popular music. I’m obsessed.
The Black Jacobins, inspired by the Haitian revolution the first ever successful national revolt for independence – of whom the leader was Toussaint L’Ouverture, previously a slave. After expelling the full force of the British, Spanish and French armed forces he established control over the whole island, of course to the bitter distain of his western enemies, so much so that to this day Haiti still suffer for Toussaint’s pride and courage. Throughout his years in power, he worked tirelessly to improve the economy and security of Saint Domingo (modern Haiti). He restored the plantation system using free labor, negotiated trade treaties with Britain and the United States, and maintained a large and well-disciplined army. This is the extremely almost criminal paraphrase of a man’s legacy that has inspired me hugely.
Lauryn Hill: MTV Unplugged
My dad showed me this when I was 10 and it made a huge impression; I was so consumed by what I was taking in. Ever since I have indulged her music she has been a huge inspiration. Sonically, especially with the Fugees, she managed to balance hip hop so beautifully with elements of soul and undercurrents of folk. Her lyrics and her intention in everything she does is again reflective of why I love blues. It is everything music should only be about: honesty, communication and connection. Everything she produced was like she had torn her heart out and she left in her listener’s lap. This performance in particular was so raw and so wholesome; it’s a mainstay for me. All hail Ms Lauryn Hill.
Both my parents respectively should be in this section as they are both my heroes for their own reasons, but my dad especially has been a huge inspiration. The life he has led has been full of adversity – as a man, as a black man, and as a black man with no stable rooting. Despite this he has fought every demon to be an inspiring father, not only to his biological children but to the many children he encounters through his work. He continues to strive to do his all in the name of love and growth.
Quote: “Me only have one ambition, y’know. I only have one thing I really like to see happen. I like to see mankind live together – black, white, Chinese, everyone – that’s all.”