Singer Jarrad Ricketts hopes to inspire others to persevere and ignore negativity through his album Break The Rules.
For Jarrad, who grew up in Athlone and now stays in Wetton, says music has always been part of his life, as he has a number of musicians in his family.
His sister, Lee-Anne Ricketts, is a saxophonist while his dad, Basil Ricketts, is a singer, guitarist and keyboard player. This meant that he grew up listening to different music genres, from swing jazz, to soul, blues and pop.
He started singing at the tender age of nine, as part of the church choir at St Theresa’s parish in Welcome Estate and released his first single, Don’t want your love, when he was 19 years old.
His first performance was at the Joseph Stone Auditorium in Athlone and last year he performed at the Cape Town International Jazz Festival after winning the third annual espYoungLegends 2018 Competition.
His album, which was released in February, features pop music with undertones of other music genres and each song paints a picture of a different time in his life and things he experienced. It also includes his hit singles Take Me To Your Heart and New Life.
The 30-year-old said that music had always been a way for him to express himself. “I’ve always been surrounded by music which contributed to me inevitably becoming a singer, performer and songwriter. In my album I tried to showcase some of the sounds I was influenced by growing up,” he said.
His favourite track on the album is called Unicorns / Living my best life, which is about not listening to people who want to demotivate you and instead Jarrad encourages listeners to follow their dreams.
Asked what his motivation is to continue pursuing music, he said: “I love exploring the endless possibilities of music. There’s always so much to learn, and so much to explore within creating art.
I’m inspired by how music can affect how people behave, think and feel, and how it can tell a story. I feel that when I write or sing, I am fulfilling my life’s purpose and contributing positively to the arts, using my God-given talent to positively affect the hearts and minds of people.”
The album is available on all digital platforms and Musica stores nationwide.