Modern reggae star Oje Ollivierre, better known as Protoje, has established himself as a cornerstone of the modern Reggae scene in recent years. Known for hits like Rasta Love, his work has not gone unnoticed by the Reggae community. In sitting down with Protoje, the first of his qualities that is noticed is his modesty and his commitment to prioritize the integrity of his music over fame. A truly genuine person, his music reflects his views in an intimate way. In speaking with Protoje, we got a chance to get to know him as a person, and his views on how he sees himself and his role in the Reggae world.
How does it feel to be performing at Cali Roots?
It’s Good. I like this festival, it’s a good vibe, so I always try to be here.
Overall, how do you really want your legacy to read?
I don’t know. I’m just concentrating on making music, good music, and inspiring people with my music. Inspiring myself with it, and trying to get better at my craft, and that’s what I focus on.
What inspires you the Most?
Life. Life, getting up and living life. Family, friends, and love.
You manage a few other artists in addition to your own music. How do you see your role as a mentor in addition to a performer?
You know, you can inspire people through… Support makes a lot of difference in other people’s lives, and I just feel that is something I have always wanted to do; work with other artists and give them a platform.
Why did you decide to take on these specific artists?
Just being inspired by their talent, and thinking they have a high ceiling.
Both musically and otherwise, what do you consider to be your biggest accomplishments so far?
Just being able to be a part of, and helping to spearhead a movement of talented artists that are kind of changing the platform of Jamaican music, the whole scope of it.
What’s next for Protoje?
More music, a video from Blood money, and more touring.
Anywhere specific on the tour you’re excited about?
Playing UCLA Jazz Fest should be awesome, and heading to Germany for Summer Jam should also be a highlight.
What is some advice you would like to leave with those who want to emulate you?
Just focus on being better, and not about making it.
As an artist at your level, I’m sure you get asked most every question possible. Is there any question you are never asked on a subject that you have always wanted to speak on more?
No, not really. If I want to talk about stuff, I talk about stuff, you know what I mean? I just depend on you guys to ask what you want to ask.