Toronto-based reggae-fusion artist Ammoye recently received a JUNO Award nomination for Reggae Recording of The Year for her album, Water.
Water is a 13-song collection that features contributions from stars of the international reggae scene, including DJ Agile, Danny Maestro, The Senior Allstars, Thomas Blondet, Adrian Hanson Donsome and the legendary Lord SassaFras, as well as production from Natural High, and executive production, mastering and sound engineering from Tandra Lytes Jhagroo.
Six-time JUNO Award-nominee Ammoye delivers a unique future-forward reggae sound that incorporates old-school rocksteady, dancehall and dubstep with gospel, soul and R&B. With an infectious voice and messages of empowerment, Jamaican-born Ammoye is a lightworker and self-declared soul rebel.
She has had the privilege of performing around the world as an independent artist at The Grammy Showcase during Grammy week in Los Angeles, at New Skool Rules Music Festival in Rotterdam Netherlands, and alongside Kirk Diamond and Tome at the 2021 JUNO Opening Night Awards in Canada. Ammoye has shared the stage with reggae moguls such as Ziggy Marley, Freddie McGregor, Chronixx, Romain Virgo, Beenie Man, Sean Paul, Chris Martin, Tarrus Riley, Barrington Levy and Exco Levi, to name a few.
Last year at Mundial Montreal, Ammoye received the Rideau Award, which led her to showcase during Rideau 2023 in Quebec City. She also won the Kilimanjaro Music Award for Best Music Video for “On The Dock”.
Ammoye is currently getting ready to perform at the 2023 JUNOfest presented by CBC Music in Edmonton on Friday, March 10th.
I had the opportunity to chat with Ammoye about her 2023 Juno Award Nomination, finding inspiration, and what’s next.
Kat: You were recently nominated for a 2023 JUNO Award for Reggae Recording of The Year for your album, Water. How does it feel to be nominated for your sixth JUNO Award?
Ammoye: To be nominated for a JUNO Award the 6th time for this body of work Water feels super uber exciting, gratifying and exhilarating! I am grateful and thankful that the JUNO Awards is acknowledging in this way all the effort, time and creativity that went into Water! I truly can’t express enough through words about how much this acknowledgement and nomination means to me. It means everything!
Kat: Can you talk about the inspiration behind Water?
Ammoye: The inspiration behind Water is all about rebirth. Acknowledging the place and point that I am at in my life right now. My album before this was The Light which signified the beginning of my spiritual awakening, discovering my higher self, my soul…the light within. This awareness and intimate relationship with self, changed me profoundly in every way. Water tells the story of who I am now since that paradigm shift, awareness and rediscovery. It gives you a bit of insight into this new version of myself…mind, body and soul as I move into the flow of becoming the best me I can be. It represents a marker if you will, the transition from the old me to the new me. Water is the journey thus far of the purification, rediscovery, integration and full acceptance of who I truly am, not who I was told I was or should be.
Kat: What do you hope listeners take from the album?
Ammoye: What I hope my listeners will take from my album is the freedom to just unapologetically be who you truly are. To feel empowered, allowing the changes happening in and around us to happen with ease, grace and flow without judgement. To be an observer and not absorb the dramas of life as they play out. To recognize how important self care is to one’s optimal health and taking the time to go out into nature, being still with the healing energies of Mother Earth aka Gaia and allowing your intuition to guide. Trusting that everything is happening for a reason and that everything always works itself out for the greater good of all. To release all fears and trust that the best is yet to come for our planet, our world and each other regardless of the current state of affairs we are currently experiencing individually, collectively and globally.
Kat: What do you find is the most challenging part of your creative process?
Ammoye: What I find sometimes to be the most challenging part of my creative process especially as an independent artist is the lack of financial resources readily available to me so that I am able when necessary to afford to just be creative without being stressed about expenses and responsibilities. Therefore I have to make a conscious effort to manage and navigate my time and resources to ensure that I am free to make and give quality energy and space to my creative process without jeopardizing being in the flow of when I’m called or feeling the need to be creative.
Kat: You have had the privilege of performing around the world as an independent artist and shared the stage with some incredible reggae moguls. What has been a career highlight for you so far and what have you learned along the way?
Ammoye: One of the many highlights of my career I’ve been blessed to experience is travelling. Getting to experience new countries and cultures, food, music etc. I just recently got to travel and perform in Brazil for the first time in August 2022 at one of the largest music festivals in Brazil “COMAFest”. It was a magnificent and spectacular opportunity that I’ll never forget. The overwhelming appreciation for what I do from the Brazilian audience took my breath away! I fell in-love with the people, the energy of Brazil, the culture, the food, the fashion and music… all of it!!! I look forward to going back again soon! One of the many things I’ve learned from living my career is to always be grateful and thankful and always remain in an attitude of gratitude for all the people who come out and show their unwavering support for independent artists like myself. Never take them or the support they give for granted.
Kat: What can we expect from you for the balance of 2023?
Ammoye: What you can expect from me for the balance of 2023 is more live performances continuing to promote the album here and abroad. You can also expect more new music because I’m currently feeling even more inspired, confident and motivated to continue to expand and evolve creatively. So keep an ear and eye out for me pushing the limits and myself as I move forward kicking down any and all doors trying to suppress or hold me back from sharing all that I have to offer as I hold fast to my intent to heal my listeners and continue to inspire my audience with the music and works I create!