At the age of 20 in Milan, he graduated from the Giuseppe Verdi Conservatoire. In december 2012 Cezar decided to approach the pop opera musical genre, which combines both the operatic and pop opera styles on one stage. His first single, Cinema Paradiso, premiered in Romania on Christmas Eve. In 2013 Cezar collaborated with artists Andrea Bocelli and Angela Gheorghiu, and released a single written especially for him by Vangelis, and one written by HaHaHa production ( Romanian pop music production label). He won the Romanian Eurovision Selectia Nationala with the song "It's My Life" written by Cristian Faur, representing Romania at the Eurovision Song Contest in Malmö, in May. http://www.cezarouatu.com/ 2) Born with Maroon heritage to musically inclined parents Rupert & Sonia Cunningham, Cezar’s father co-founded Ashanti & Bamboo Records in London.
The labels produced reggae geared towards the large West Indian population in the UK & aided in fostering & fuelling Europe’s long standing love affair with Jamaican music. At less than a year in age his family returned to Jamaica, concerned about securing their son’s cultural identity. Though the marriage would dissolve by the time Cez was 3, his closeness to his parents remained & he would divide his time between them throughout childhood, spending academic months in Jamaica & holidays in Houston, Texas following his father’s relocation there. Poring over his father’s record collection as a child he discovered & became hooked on the sounds of Marley, Tosh, Cliff, Mayfield, Stevie Wonder, Armstrong, King Cole, Redding & a myriad of others.
The voices on those records were his babysitters while his father was at work, & through their stories & emotions he learned early lessons about life. Considering his lineage, it’s no mystery why Cezar today is already generating more than passing interest with his own stories, emotions & music. His personal journey musically speaking began while he was at university in the US. Having sung since childhood he joined a fledgling band of talented Jamaican youngsters called ‘Earthvibes’.
Though the band’s members – among them Jeffrey Moss Solomon (now of Roots Underground) & Andrew Seaga – also studied outside of Jamaica, they would coalesce on summers to perform at small shows in Kingston. Cez would later go on to teach himself guitar after attending a Lucy Pearl concert & finding a guitar pick that lead singer Raphael Saadiq had thrown into the crowd. “I thought it was a sign” he says, “I still have it”! After earning a degree in Architecture from Howard University, Cez returned to Jamaica in 2003 & set about achieving his musical goals. It wasn’t till 2004 though that things really began to take shape.
In January he impressed audiences playing the feature stage at the Air Jamaica Jazz ‘n’ Blues Festival. His eclectic style & vocal abilities turned heads and opened eyes & ears. His first release ‘Sexyways’ on the ‘Thundaclap’ rhythm garnered much airplay as did the video for the single. With its release on the Greensleeves Records compilation, it was put into rotation on BBC radio’s reggae & dancehall show in the UK.
Other releases followed. ‘Knockin’ at your door’ produced by Steven “Gibbo” Gibbs was a bold declaration that he had arrived at the doorstep of the world. He won’t be knocking for long. ‘Lay u down’ yet another release, became, & remains very popular on the international hit ‘Stepz’ rhythm produced by Renaissance Productions.
Cezar’s co-production in the form of his guitar playing is also featured on the entire compilation. ‘Stepz’ has launched hit after hit including Sean Paul’s hit single “We’ll be burning”. The collaborative success of ‘Stepz’ continued into Renaissance’s latest hit rhythm – Icebreaka! Once again Cez’s guitar is prominent throughout & his single ‘Irresistible’ is taking his sound deeper into the hearts of those who already love it. His other collaborators include legendary producer Tony Kelly, Steven ‘Lenky’ Marsden, Flabba, Al’borosie, noted dancehall producer ‘Blaxx’, Stephan Schulmeister of Bush House & producer David Kennedy, with whom the internationally awarded “Keep On” was recorded.
It’s a shot to watch! Among his other releases ‘Take the Fall’ produced by Zero Gravity, is a lilting ballad about letting go of one’s fears & giving into the vulnerability of being in love. Lyrically & stylistically it’s a stand out hit in the making. The accompanying video was shot in NYC by directors Nadia Sampson & Tim Naylor & is now broadcast globally on BETJ & VH1 Soul! ‘Wasted Seasons’ another single is the type of song that moves the listener almost to the point of tears lyrically, yet the rhythm structure imposed by producer Andrew “Preggs” Thompson offsets any feelings of darkness. It’s an oxymoron of sorts, like the term ‘new-classic’, but Wasted Seasons is destined to become one.
This singer-songwriter & talented producer in his own right, has made enormous strides in a very short time. He has written for other artists such as Tami Chynn, Wayne Marshall and Machel Montano. That writing ability has gained him second place in world music in the 2006/07 International Songwriting Competition for the masterfully penned ‘Keep On’. Out of 15,000 songs from around the world, Cez’s sole entry has risen to the top of the pile.
He is steadily doing the same. With his videos in heavy rotation & regular performances, his fan base continues to grow significantly. He has many new releases – including work on the UNI Japan released ‘Singerz’ album series - & appearances on such events as Air Jamaica Jazz n’ Blues ’04 – ‘07, Bob Marley Caribbean Festival, opening for the late, great, Lucky Dube in Brazil’s Salvador Reggae Fest 07, RE High School Tour, Antigua Splash, Miss Jamaica Florida, the Hon. Portia Simpson-Miller’s Inauguration Ball, Temptation Live, The E-Spot and performances at Weekenz, The Village & other local & international shows Read more on Last.fm.
User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
show me more