Jamaican artist Stein, formerly Einstein, takes on U.S. audiences this summer, and is achieving great success with a slew of current hit singles. With three of his new tracks gaining airplay on New York’s HOT97, participating in a Russell Simmons-lead school tour, releasing his first single under his own record label, and preparing his debut album, it is truly the summer of Stein. Yes, indeed! .I am feeling the neck tats!!! It could very well be the summer, fall, winter, spring and summer again of Stein
Emerging in 2007, Stein made a name in the dancehall game as a prolific lyricist, penning tunes that both entertained and provoked. He has also inked several hits for dancehall giants Bounty Killer and Beenie Man. Initially spewing hardcore lyrics, Stein’s current sounds have evolved with more global content, style and appeal.
“It is summer time year round in Jamaica and dancehall music was originally about partying, having fun and enjoying the vibes,” reveals Stein. “I’m capturing that timeless, international flavor of dancehall music in my current singles, and I hope my longtime fans and new ones can enjoy themselves, in and out of the dance halls.”
Working with the top producers in Jamaica adds unique flavor and flair to each of Stein’s current singles, most of which are being played on radio in Jamaica and on reggae specialty programming worldwide. Three of his singles are currently garnering coveted airplay on U.S. urban radio authority, HOT97 in New York City, played by Massive B’s Bobby Konders. The three hit tracks are “Shell Dung The Party” (Chimney Records), “Visa Buddy” and “Again & Again” (Cashflow Records).
His humanitarian side sees Stein giving back to the community as he is currently participating in a Russell Simmons initiative – a New York City school tour that promotes peace to students. This has Stein performing alongside the likes of rappers such as Maino, to high school students from Brooklyn to the Bronx. Stein was embraced on this tour as students sang along, word for word, to all of his songs (see video below). “Youths are our future and you have to support them in positive ways,” discloses Stein. “I’m eager to get involved in Jamaica and throughout the Caribbean to do the same outreach there.”
Stein also releases his first single on his very own label New Planet Records, with the lover’s rock duet “Long Distance Relationship,” featuring dancehall princess Tiana. The single hits all major digital retailers worldwide on July 3, and is being distributed by FOX FUSE. This is merely the tip of the iceberg for Stein, as he prepares for the release of his debut album, which is currently in production.
Stein was born Jermaine Melvil Lee-King on April 8, 1983 in St. Thomas, Jamaica. His mixed heritage pays tribute to his Kingston-born father of Chinese and Afro-Caribbean descent, and his Portland-born mother of Afro-Caribbean ancestry. He was first nicknamed Einstein by a female cousin, after she saw his undone hair in a local barbershop and noted the resemblance to Albert Einstein. The nickname caught on within the entire community, and once he transitioned into a dancehall artist, the teenager could not get away from it as local crowds hailed him as ‘Einstein,’ whenever he hit the stage. As he has matured into a dancehall deejay, singjay (singer), and songwriter, the artist’s music has evolved and so has his name.
Stein, first performing at the tender age of seven, finessed his sound and his lyrical content for years. He eventually gained prominence in the dancehall scene in 2007, with his breakout hit “Rise Di Machine (Caliber)” on the Power Cut Riddim, produced by Stephen “Di Genius” McGregor. Stein secured a number of hits over the years through chemistry in the lab with McGregor and other notable dancehall producers, including Chimney Records (Jordan McClure and David “Hizzle” Hayle), Cashflow Records, Big Yard (Robert Livingston), and UTP 007 Records (Supa Hype).
Melodies aside, what sets Stein apart is his indelible talent for crafting hardcore, gritty, sexy dancehall lyrics to perfectly accompany any riddim presented to him. His musical process can be challenging because he often has so many lyrics in hand, it is difficult to choose in which direction to take the track. His knack for lyrics also brings substance to his music, as fans are able to party to his songs in the dance halls, but can leave, listen to his music in their car or at home, and be able to take something away from each tune. This has granted Stein the opportunity to loop his lyrics into the sounds of other dancehall icons, penning several hit tracks or Bounty Killer and Beenie Man.
Expanding his repertoire as an entertainer has placed Stein on stages across Europe, the United States and the Caribbean. Career highlights include a 2008 European tour, where Stein was elated at the reception he received from fans in Germany, France, Belgium and Italy. Having relished notoriety as a predominantly underground artist in Jamaica until then, the tour exposed Stein’s music to an international fan base, which he currently enjoys.
The year 2012 sees Stein putting his stamp on the global map with four singles garnering airplay throughout Europe, Africa, North America and the Caribbean. With current hits such as “Shell Dung The Party,” “Summer Time Again,” “Visa Buddy” and “Again & Again,” Stein is determined to bring his brand of dancehall to the worldwide audience, and spread the sounds of the Caribbean beyond all borders.