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Original Koffee: A Quick Bio of The Young Jamaican Artist



Original Koffee - The Massive Jamaica

Teenage singer and songwriter Mikayla Simpson, aka Koffee, has a lot to give thanks for.

Since posting her tribute to Usain Bolt, entitled “Legend”, Usain himself has reposted her video to his personal Instagram account, and her stardom has been steadily rising.

To add to her rising stardom she was also recently nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album of 2019.

Allow me to give you a quick recap of her rise to fame from her beginnings up to this point.

Where Her Journey Began

Hailing from the Eltham View neighborhood of Spanish Town, Ms Simpson, performing under the name Koffee, or Original Koffee, was first exposed to music in her Seventh Day Adventist church.

She began teaching herself guitar on a borrowed instrument when she was twelve and she began listening to, and getting inspired by, reggae music at age fourteen.

“I would say it all began with my guitar.” She told The Guardian newspaper in an interview last year.

She went to Ardenne High School and in her final year she competed in a talent show and showcased her talent to nearly one thousand students.

Here’s Where She Starts Getting Noticed

Her Usain Bolt tribute led to her getting the attention of Upsetta Records, for whom she recorded the 2017 hit, “Burning,” a song she wrote after failing to get into sixth form.

That track led to her recording her debut single, “Toast”, produced by Major Lazer’s Walshy Fire and the engineer Izybeats.

She cites Bob Marley and Peter Tosh as major influences to her music, preferring traditional reggae to the musical stylings of dancehall artists like Mavado and Vybz Kartel.

Let’s Talk About Koffee’s “Rapture” EP

According to BBC, the future of guitar music is female. And if the recent happenings in the space are any indicator, music fans are experiencing a renaissance in all genres of music.

Released on March 19, 2019 by Columbia Records, the Rapture E.P. garnered critical acclaim worldwide, and a Grammy 2020 nomination for best reggae album of 2019.

In a Reggaeville article in 2018, Koffee spoke of the writing and recording of her E.P.

“For me, whenever I approach a riddim, I try to find the best way to complement it… So when I heard the riddim (for ‘Throne,’ created by Walshy Fire) I had a little bit of trouble aligning myself with it, I was like, ‘Wow, I never heard anything like this before…and I’m thinking I’m just gonna mash it up… ‘Throne’ is a song you just have to listen to and feel the energy.”

Koffee’s Vision For The Future

In her Spotify bio Koffee wrote “I want to bring positive change to the world… I want to be a positive movement and make a positive movement… I want to bring vibes and positive change. I want to impact the world.”

She threatens on the title track of her E.P. “Kill them with verbs and with the pronouns.” And considering her original career goal was to be a pharmacist, it’s no surprise that her musical medicine is “lifting up the whole town.”

To get more information on her you can visit her website,, and you can check out her music on Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube.

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The reality of job hunting for today’s university graduates

Final year is done and it’s time to go into the world of work and start job hunting in your respective field of study.



Job hunting for university graduates (Landscape) -The Massive Jamaica

Finally! The last semester of final year is done and it’s time to go into the world of work. You get your resume done and start job hunting in your respective field of study. 

But then your spirit starts to sink as you realize a month passes with no responses. Two months, three months, a year and still no responses. 

You might be wondering what you did wrong? Your resume is great – I mean you probably even got it revamped by a professional. You graduated with honours. So what’s the problem? 

These are all feelings I’m all too familiar with. This is the sad and sometimes depressing reality of job hunting for university graduates today.

Job hunting can get really discouraging

Terri-Karelle, in a video posted on her instagram page, highlighted the struggles of job hunting for young people. 

“Sometimes you do everything right, sometimes you get the grades, sometimes you have the qualifications but there is no job offer. You do the interviews but you still don’t land the job.” 

The entire process can get very discouraging. Sending out multiple resumes, dressing up for interviews only to be declined is exhausting, to say the least. It can also take a toll on your mental health. Thoughts of sadness and failure rushing through your mind are enough to drive you insane.

Sometimes when you look and see that all your friends are getting jobs and you’re the only one in the lot still struggling to find work, it hurts. You end up feeling discouraged, thinking maybe you’re the problem.

Your lack of work experience and age can be barriers to landing jobs

It is no secret that the requirement for years of experience is a major hindrance to graduates fresh out of university. Many companies require that their prospective employees have three or more years of experience in order to qualify for any job. 

The reality is that many graduates leave school without having any work experience. Because they were juggling school and extracurricular activities, most graduates simply didn’t have the time to gain relevant work experience. Some may have done internships but most times this isn’t enough for some employers.

On the other hand some companies flat out reject applicants because of their age. The applicant may meet all the qualifications necessary to land that job but because they’re “too young” they are rejected. 

According to them your youth renders you unable to effectively carry out the required task of the job. Forget about the fact that most times these are entry level jobs which are best done by the very young people that are getting rejected. And what’s funny is that these employers are usually strong “advocates” for youth development.

So, what do you do?

In the same video Terri-Karelle later asked “What do you now do? How have you developed yourself?” 

The reality is that while job hunting is discouraging and depressing you shouldn’t give up. It’s in this seemingly dark and low point in your life that the perfect moments to work on yourself appear. 

Take the time to learn a new skill, language, or enhance talents you already have. There are quite a few platforms that provide all the resources you need to develop yourself – like Linkedin, Skillshare, Udemy, Google and good old Youtube.

You can’t throw your hands in the air and vow to never apply for another job. Not now. Not when you’re so close. Continue to press for jobs, even the ones it looks like you aren’t qualified for. Just keep pushing.

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