After taking another hiatus from the music business, Cham is back in studio alongside his trusted friend and producer, the elusive Dave Kelly, for his third, yet-to-be-titled album.
Following up on the success of Ghetto Story, the international hit song, and his Billboard-topping album of the same name, would be a task that would have most artistes shuddering in their shoes.
However, for Cham, formerly known as Baby Cham, the task is one of preparation and putting out quality rather than quantity.
In an interview with the artiste from his home in Miami, THE STAR spoke with him about his current project, staying on top of the business and why it has been a while since his home country has heard from him musically.
In 2006, Cham hit the musical jackpot with the poignant song Ghetto Story, which peaked at number 77 on the Billboard Hot 100 trajectory, number 15 on the Billboard Hot Hip Hop/R&B Singles chart, and number 13 on Billboard’s Rap Tracks, as well as receiving heavy rotation on MTV and BET.
Since the release of the album, excluding his collaboration with rapper MIMS and Junior Reid for the remix This Is Why I’m Hot, nothing new has been forthcoming from the Cham camp. Three years later, after extensive touring and promoting, Cham is back in studio and ready for business.
He commented, “I’ve just been working on the new album, we’ve being doing a lot of work and hoping to release the first single from the album by next month. When you have an album as successful as Ghetto Story which was released to dancehall fans in 2005 and went international in 2006, you have a lot of work to do on the road.”
“I’ve been on the road for the last two years and didn’t have the time to be in the studio. Then we had This Is Why I’m Hot and went back on the road. It was really towards the end of 2008 that I got a break and got the chance to be back in studio. Also you know I have to find the time in between all this for my family as well.”
While Cham released possible names for his last album during his last media run, this time around he’s not playing the name game, and is waiting to stumble across the right vibe that will capture his next effort, which could possibly be released on the international label, Capitol Records.
returning the favour
Having worked with Carl Thomas and T-Pain on their albums, they will be returning the favour on Cham’s album. Fans may also see Cham doing work with singer Alicia Keys again, who re-mixed his Ghetto Story song.
Since the last album, Cham has a lot on his mind: “since the last album I’ve just grown up so much musically and mentally. Every day I’ve just been reading and working on improving my writing ability. That’s what I tend to do, read a lot before going into studio and working on my technique.”
Cham says he’s now signed to Capitol Records, after originally being signed to Atlantic, and will release the album for Capitol as long as he gets what he wants for the album on paper – signed and ready.
In the meantime, he recently released some songs for the local dancehall including, Dem Fi Gweh for Firelinks, the socially conscious Recession for TJ Records and the sexy almost techno song Call Me for Dave Kelly.
Check out tomorrow’s STAR for Cham’s thoughts on the music and how he manages to remain relevant after so many years.