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Making the right Imij

Published: 
Thursday, January 26, 2017
Joey Ng Wai, centre, leader of Imij & Co, with members of the group.

Like every other conglomerate, there comes a time for change, and it is once again the time for change for Imij & Co. Leader Joey Ng Wai said this week: “This allows us to give way to new and better talent, thereby giving them an opportunity to join the university of music—the University of Imij & Co, as we are so often referred too—to showcase their talent as a part of Imij & Co.”

Vocalist Kevon Carter is no longer with the band and Ng Wai has wished him the very best in his future endeavours.

Second Imij, also known as Imij & Co, is celebrating its 28th year of existence and is being rebranded.

Ng Wai said: “With the changing climate of the music industry in T&T, management took a decision to make changes not only to its personnel, but to the approach of the music, keeping a less electronic sound and more of a live instrumentation feel.”

Ng Wai, the lead guitarist, remains the leader of the band and now bassist Miguel “Santana” Charles, the longest standing member, will be the band’s musical director.

The newlook Imij & Co frontline comprises Malaika Ballantyne, Rachelle Chedz, Phillip Carter and Asten Isaac.

The 2014 South Calypso Monarch, Ballantyne has also been a National Calypso Queen finalist for four years. She is the daughter of acclaimed composer Gregory “GB” Ballantyne.

About her, Ng Wai said: “Malaika’s energy on the stage is truly fascinating. She has grown in every aspect as a performer and entertainer.”

He continued: “Rochelle’s passion and love for music is truly inspiring and admirable. Her No Talking hit song has been on the radio from April 2016 to present and has been one of the most requested songs on the local pop scene. Writing music comes naturally for Rochelle, so much more to come from her.”

Describing Carter as a musician, teacher and performer, Ng Wai said nothing is too much for this young man.

Isaac has been writing music for more than 12 years. His contributions for 2017 are Count Me In, Meet Ya Family, Doh Hurt Ya Head, and the one that plays constantly on the airwaves is Rum Friend. Isaac intends also releasing a ditty for the Power Soca category of the International Soca Monarch competition. Besides his contributions, Isaac has written 15 songs for various artistes, including seven Blaxx’s album.

“Asten is a self-motivated, ambitious and musical breath of fresh air to Imij & Co,” said Ng Wai.

Other personnel of Imij & Co include Dion Nora (producer/keyboardist/arranger, and occasionally the chef of the band); Jonathan Hensley; Kamau Abe Skerritt (DJ); and Kevin Toussaint and Kerron Patrick (technical staff).