Entertainment

Tafina steps up to the mic

Friday, June 21, 2019

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Though only in her 20s, singer Tafina is not short on music industry experience. She was a music teacher and worked as backing vocalist for a number of dancehall/reggae acts.

So, there were no butterflies in the stomach when it was time to record Tek Weh Miself, her first solo song. Co-written by Tafina, her mother Pam Hall and Errol Wilson, it was released in May.

“The experience I underwent while recording the song was very humbling. I learned more about myself vocally and was reminded that singing is no easy feat, especially when you want to perform at the optimum level. Under the guidance of Douglas Flanigan, who produced my vocals, I was able to tap inwards and bring forth the emotions needed to help me deliver the message in the story,” she said.

Tek Weh Miself features veteran musicians who have worked with her mother on countless sessions — keyboardist Robbie Lyn and guitarist Dwight Pinkney. They are just two of the industry people she saw growing up in Kingston, hanging out at recording studios and attending live shows.

While pointing to neo-soul artistes such as Faith Evans, Aaliyah and Alicia Keys as influences, Tafina said her biggest inspiration is Hall, a seasoned vocalist whose songs include Book of Life; she has also provided harmony for numerous hit songs.

“Growing up, watching her in action whether on stage or in studio recording her albums, singing harmonies or creating tracks for herself to sing on, was what I knew I'd eventually be doing with my life,” Tafina stated. “She exposed me to all types of genres including jazz, classical, reggae, ska, etc. Not to mention, I get some of my sound and style of performing directly from her.”

Tafina began learning piano at age of five and after leaving Meadowbrook High School, taught the instrument for a few years. Between studies at Excelsior Community College, where she did entertainment management and Mico teachers college (early childhood education), Tafina did backing vocals in studio and on stage for her mother, JC Lodge, Thriller U, D'Angel and Harold Davis.

Tek Weh Miself is her first major solo project. Previous recordings include Good Times, a collaboration with Blizzi, grandson of Toots Hibbert.

— Howard Campbell


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