Pop/reggae outfit The Big Takeover premieres their retro music video for “Shy” today. In the Dino Davaros-directed clip, the New York-based band star as guests of a 70’s late-night show, where they perform their latest single. The new video comes as the band hits the summer festival circuit in support of their forthcoming record, slated for release in the fall.
Frontwoman Nee Nee Rushie moved from Jamaica to the U.S. 16 years ago and has since shared the stage with legends like The Wailers, Pete Seeger, and Sister Sparrow. Here, she talks about what’s next for The Big Takeover, the move that changed her life, and the highlights of her career so far.
AF: Tell me a little bit about your song “Shy.” Did the idea come from a personal experience?
NNR: No, actually. I was going through a hard time in my relationship at the time when I wrote it. I found it therapeutic to write about a fictional scenario that was completely different from mine. It is about a girl that is in love with her best friend. He may be in love with her too, but he has a girlfriend.
AF: What made you want to go with the retro late-night show theme for your music video?
NNR: The song has a retro pop vibe that pairs perfectly with the retro late-night show theme. We knew we wanted to do a performance video, but the idea for a retro late-night show came from the director.
AF: What age did you move to the US and did you move for your music career?
NNR: I moved here when I was 15 years old. I moved to attend college. I went to college in New Paltz, NY. That is where I met my bandmates and started the band. Looking back, I realize that if I had not moved to the states and went to college where I went, The Big Takeover would have never happened. So in a way, my music career was directly linked to my move to the US.
AF: With three albums out already, what have been some highlights of your music career?
NNR: We actually have four albums out already. Our very first album called Following Too Close was released back in 2008. We sold 1000 copies of it and never made any more copies. It is on our “to do” list to re-release it online or something. Over the years, we have had the opportunity to play alongside many artists that I consider to be legends: Toots and the Maytals, Beres Hammond, Sister Nancy, The Slackers, The Skatalites… When we get these opportunities we use it as a learning experience. We have ventured out on tours across the US and have been included on prestigious festival line ups such as Mountain Jam, Burlington Jazz Festival, Musikfest and more. It is also amazing to watch our fanbase gradually expand over the years.
AF: What can you tell us about The Big Takeover’s upcoming album?
NNR: We always feel that our upcoming release is the best work we have ever produced. This time around, we feel very comfortable and confident in saying that. We branched out and got outside producers and engineers to work on this album. Usually, we do it all independently and homegrown. We were able to work with David Baron, for example. He has produced and recorded songs and albums for people like Meghan Trainor, The Lumineers and Lenny Kravitz. He produced and recorded two songs on our upcoming record. We also have new members in the band that have been breathing new life into our writing process and taking on producer responsibilities. I love all the music on this record. We are experimenting with new sounds and styles and taking bigger risks. I think people who do not know us will enjoy it, and people who are anticipating the release will be pleased.
AF: When will the album be released?
NNR: We look forward to a fall release.
AF: How has your tour been so far?
NNR: We often take on national runs in the summer. This summer we decided to take a step back from that and focus on finishing the record and doing as much media appearances as possible. We have already done some amazing festival performances and look forward to the upcoming ones later in the season.