Baha Men was the Bahamian band who took the world by storm in the 1990’s earning a Grammy Award in 2000 for their hit single, “Who Let the dogs Out?”, along with several other awards (Best Dance Recording; Billboard Music Awards for World Music Artist of the Year and World Music Album of the Year). Mr. Rik Carey was a lead vocalist in this band.
Since that time, Rik Carey has taken on many roles and has become an integral part of another band- Visage. This Grammy winner, father and painter took some time out to talk with Nu Woman Magazine about his craft and give us an update on what he has been doing.
“I’ve been working on my personal projects. I just did a release of a song called “You Can’t Blame Me”, which is on radio stations now. The last I heard, it was #3 on the Bahamas Weekly Top Countdown, and I think it made #2 on Island FM. I’ve also just completed a project I produced for Visage, called “Happy Hour”.
Rik talks about ‘Happy Hour’ and how it came about
“Happy Hour” is basically a fun, party-type, dance-track. The band who is gearing up to do some things now, saw what I did when producing the Tribute song for the Golden Knights and liked it so much that Obi Pindling (Visage’s manager) asked me to come on board and help with “Happy Hour”.
He loves how I did the track and says it’s the new wave of Bahamian music.Who am I to argue with that? So, I’ve decided to take the project on and it’s finished. It’s completed.
Visage – Happy Hour, featuring Wendi and Dyson Knight-
Rik revealed that he has also been working on a personal single, “U Can’t Blame Me” that just came out.
“My personal single is out now, and I’m juggling different things; between myself and Baha Men, and I got the art thing going as well. I just did a display yesterday.”
Rik, who started painting back in high school, said he left this passion to pursue music, but that painting was always his first love.
“I’ve always had it in me. I picked up my first show ‘Island Collage’ which was a combination of the Arts and music. In 2010, I had a little concert, along with a showing of my Art and I also invited other vendors. It was a success! Many people came and actually bought the work. I think they got excited because I gave them a pre-viewing and they picked out stuff. So after that I kept going. I’ve gotten invitations from people to their events like fashion shows. I’ve also been working with Cia Monet for a while.”
Rik also mentioned his involvement with The Heart Ball, who he says continues to bless him.
“I do that every year at Government House and host other displays at various places.”
About his paintings..
The paintings combine his music and art and his experience with Baha Men.
“This year I went with painting a lot of instruments. I paint the people playing. I design Junkanoo drums: goat skin drums, Tum-Tum, cowbells and horns and other items like that and I put it on a canvas. So far people have been going crazy for it, so, I decided to create smaller pieces because with the economy, not everyone can afford a $2000 piece
Rik says that a piece can start at $150 (4 x 9) and go up to $500.
“I have some pieces in the car right now, that’s how busy I’ve been.”
About his ‘New Ink’ (tattoo)..
“I got it this year, in the summer. I decided to do a tribute piece. The tattoo combined the Lignum Vitae flowers, the goatskin drums, the cowbells and the horn and was designed by Allan Wallace who designs murals.”
“If you see all the murals downtown, Allan actually designed them. I let him put my ideas together, I took it to him and told him to take this to the next level, so that I could put it on my arm and this is what he came up with; I was blown away.”
“A guy named LA tattooed it.”
Nu Woman: Let’s go back to those years of Baha Men.. What was that like traveling etc?
Rik: Very, very busy. Very hectic. Living out of a suitcase, basically. It was a constant rush. It was exciting. Good and bad experiences but mostly good. Taking that into effect, one can get a little cocky. People think that this is the first impression.. But if you sit down and talk to me, I feel that I am quite humble.
NW: How many Bahamians do you know with a Grammy Award?
Rik: That’s true, and that’s why I say with that stimulus, people think that, “Oh, I am supposed to have this larger than life attitude”, but, I am the same old Rik. I am proud of my achievements. Not many can say that, coming from a small country, but, people respect us around the globe… You know. That is a big milestone, I am still proud to this day.
NW: So what is the band doing now?
Rik: Like I was saying we are just completing the Sony deal, the album.
Rik: Yeah, we signed a deal, I think it’s a 3-album deal. As you know in this day and time, the music business is very rough. You’ll find some of the top artists, like Usher and all these guys, dabbling and doing different things and the record companies aren’t dishing out as much funds as they used to. So with a company like Sony…
NW: So how did that come about?
Rik: They came here. We had a meeting set up by members of our management team. They would always come around the island and look/scout for talent. They always knew about us. This is Sony Latin America. They were looking for a Caribbean band and we were always an option.
We had a private function at the Atlantis where they watched us perform. We also invited members of the government, who came, as it was done in conjunction with the government to see how they could further market The Bahamas.
I know the ball is still rolling, as far as getting a tour together, but we have completed the EP (like half of an album), with about six/seven songs.
That was a part of the deal. (With that we brought heavy hitters like D-Mac. He produced two songs for us. One of them is going to be a single) We are working with Troyton Remi, a young Grammy Award winning record producer from a multi-cultural background (Jamaican-Bahamian). He works for Black Shadow Records.
He has been a supporter of the band, so it’s good to know that there are young talented people out there who have an interest in our music. He has a good background in pop music also.
Sony Latin America wants to take us to places like Brazil, mainly Southern American regions, and a lot of the Caribbean regions as well. Europe and China are also on the agenda.
Rik Talks about family life..
NW: You have been back home for a while, what has life been like for you?
Rik: I’ve been back so long, it’s like a regular day for me here.
I’ve always been a family guy, I think you’ve seen that. A regular day for me is waking up early to get my kids ready for school, dropping them off and then dropping my wife to work.
Afterwards, I sometimes go straight into painting. Or, if I have a project to do, I’ll go straight to the studio and finish off some work. Sometimes, I work around the house too, or in the yard. But, it would most likely be painting. Around this time of year, December, is when I tend to sell a lot of my pieces, too.
Even though I’ve already sold a number of pieces, I still have to keep going for the rest of year. People always find, if they are looking for gifts, that they want original material. They don’t want any copies, so I have to keep paintings in stock.
I have some regular gigs over at the Atlantis.
Check out Rik’s new single “ U Can’t Blame Me” on Youtube
Photography/images. Barry Williams
Check out ‘Behind the Cover’ video with snippets of Rik’s new single “No Ordinary Fling”