Gozilay Makes debut on home turf

Julius Peter, stage name Gozilay is heating up the Groovy arena!

His name and face are relatively new to the music scene here, but his song “Koute Manman’w” has caught on and is being sung by old and young all over the island. And on Wednesday during the Groovy Soca Monarch preliminary, he performed last at number 42, but many had stayed out of sheer curiosity to see and hear the song being performed “live” for the first time. Judging from their overwhelming response, he had won them over. The judges agreed too and have placed him among the 15 finalists for this year’s Groovy Soca Monarch finals scheduled for July 15, 2011.
Born Julius Peter, he goes by the stage name of “Gozilay” although he is not actually from the town of Gozilay (Gros Islet), but spent some time there. This is how the name-story goes according to him:
“I am actually from Mon Repos, Praslin, and that name came about through some friends of mine,” he says. “I used to attend the SDA School in Castries and during that time I spent some time in Gros Islet, but my friends would be expecting to see me on weekends, but I would prefer to be out there in Gros Islet on a Friday night enjoying myself with the tourists. So one time I stayed away from Praslin for three weeks straight and when I came back, the first thing one of the guys said was “mi’ Gozilay weve’” (look Gros Islet has arrived). And so the name stuck.”
After leaving school Gozilay migrated to the United States, New York to be exact, and three years ago he says he became seriously interested in music.
“I was inspired by my cousin Kevin Charles who is now serving in Afghanistan. We both used to sing in church and he was always sending me tracks and so my first song I did seriously was one called “Pas Mete’ Lanme,” he told the STAR. He readily admits to having a preference for singing in Creole, but says he has done some songs in English as well.
“Since my first song, I have been getting a lot of support from Yardie and Hotness international who have really been pushing me,” Gozilay revealed to us.
About the song “Koute Manman’w” which has been burning up the airwaves, parties and events here and in New York, Gozilay said it was a composition he put together to reflect what is happening in society with a lack of parenting and young girls not taking on the good advice of parents.
“I composed the song at my house and I spoke to Christopher Neil (Saint Lucian producer living in the US) and I told him to build a rhythm, but I didn’t want a fast tempo, just something nice and groovy,” Gozilay says. “The song has a good message and if you think positive about the song it will make a big difference in young girl’s lives,” he states.
This is Gozilay’s first time taking part in any kind of carnival activity here in Saint Lucia and he says he is very excited. He arrived on island last Tuesday and revealed his amazement about the feedback and positive reaction to the song so far. The announcement Thursday morning that he had made it to the Groovy Soca Monarch finals he says made it even sweeter.
“I was excited when I heard the announcement and it is really a pleasure to be here in Saint Lucia to share my music with my country,” he told the STAR.
Ahead of the Groovy Soca monarch finals, Gozilay will be releasing a music video produced by Hotness International. According to Yardie of Hotness International people should look forward to the video which will be uplifting yet with a bit of wit.
“The song is a really great positive song which deals with the reality here today especially with school girls and we should really embrace it,” Yardie says. “I also think that it can be considered as one of those nation building and uplifting song, which is being judged this year. So we just want everyone to support the song and look out for the performance of Gozilay during carnival and beyond.”

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