After starting life anew in East Africa, Jah9 has returned to music, piecing life’s lessons into a mosaic on her new single Open Heart via VP Records.
Released on Friday, May 26, Open Heart finds Jah9 freeing herself from the strain of negative self-talk. The reggae soul track, produced by Iotosh, shimmers with a jazz-influenced horn section as the singer-songwriter cycles through positive affirmations, shedding doubt and resentment along the way. She consciously sculpts her life from the raw materials of her mind – courage, vision, wisdom – and, in turn, brings her desires within focus – and reach.
The video, directed by Ash Mswaki, follows Jah9 across her newfound home of Tanzania, staging scenes rich in lush landscapes, vivid colors, and East African symbolism.
“Open Heart initially started as ‘Focused Mind,’ an affirmation that evolved into a reflection and ultimately became a celebration of personal growth,” Jah9 said.
“When conceptualizing the visuals for the song, it became clear that ‘Open Heart’ perfectly captures the essence of the sounds and sights that accompany this powerful intention.”
While launching her previous album, Note to Self, in Ethiopia, the pandemic struck. Rather than return to her birthplace of Jamaica, Jah9 decided to remain in East Africa, and went to Tanzania after she received what she describes as a “divine calling.”
Three years on, and she’s settled there, having found solace in its transformative energy.
Jah9 will stage a unique show at City Splash Festival in London on May 29 as she’s joined by recording engineer Hopeton “Scientist” Brown, who will do a live dub mix of her vocal performance. It will mark her first time performing for a live audience in three years.