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An interview with Liberian Artist Peter Cole

Hi Peter, Thank you for doing this interview with TLC Africa.

TLC Africa: How have you been?

Cole: Hi Ciata. Thanks for having me. I am doing great.

TLC Africa:
Tell us what you have been up to?

Cole: I have been showcasing my music in the USA in preparation to have concerts. A few years ago I was denied a visa to come to the United States to promote my music, therefore those who've heard of my music in the USA did so via the internet or through people coming back from Liberia. So for the past three months and more I have been playing at convention balls, reunions, wedding receptions, etc to make my music discovered. All this in preparation for concerts I will have during my next visit to the USA.

TLC Africa:
Are you still living in Senegal?

Cole:
Yes, Senegal remains my base while waiting for the right time, musically to move back to Liberia.

TLC Africa:
I hear you have a new album, tell us a little about the new album.

Cole: "Rebirth" is the name of my latest album. During these times when our country is coming from the ashes of war, each and every Liberian should contribute their quota towards the reconstruction and development of Liberia. It is therefore important that the Authorities make sure every Liberian lives decently from whatever job he/she does. We all can't be Senators, Representatives, Ministers, Doctors or work in Government. On the single of the album "So say ba ni"(Bassa) I talk about the plight of Liberian musicians and creative people. Because of the lack of support and the protection of intellectual properties, talented and versatile musicians like Morris Dorley, T-Kpan Nimely, Tecumsay Roberts, etc died in poverty. Liberia is a signatory to all of the conventions on copyright protection and yet still the streets of Monrovia and other cities are flooded with pirated discs and cassettes. More than 60 percent of music aired on our air waves are not Liberian, something particular only to our county - the DJs out of love for Liberian music are doing their best but the Authorities should now step in and do something about making Liberia where copyrights and intellectual properties are respected. There are other sectors, but Rebirth is just to serve as a wake up call for those shaping the state of the new Liberia to hear - otherwise in the future we might see every household putting forth a candidate to become a Representative or a Senator.



TLC Africa: When is the release date?

Cole: The album is already released in the USA and can be downloaded and from CD Baby and designated contacts. Normally I released my albums in Liberia before the US and Europe but this time around we couldn't reach a deal with the distributors in Monrovia. But the albums will be available in Liberia in the shortest possible time. We are working on that.

TLC Africa: How long have you been in this industry and when and where did you begin your music career?

Cole: I have been in the music industry for almost two decades though I started playing music when I was just a kid in school in Gbarnga. I sang and played the guitar in the children choir. At that time I was already playing in the junior band for my school, St. Martin's High School, at talent shows and talent competitions. But the decision to become a full time musician came during the heat of our civil crisis when I decided to use my music to make my voice heard about the conflict that was going on in our country and the best way forward: we had to stop the violence.

TLC Africa: What is your favorite track on the new
album?

Cole: It is difficult to have a favorite track on an album when you are involved with the composition, arrangements and development of the tracks on the album. However, I like "Te amo" because like the song "stay alive" on the first album, it is very interesting and successful blend of a variety of music. But there are also other great songs I will leave to my fans to listen to and discover.

TLC Africa: If my readers what to buy your new CD, where can they get a copy?

Cole:
You can download my albums or order them from CD Baby. www.cdbaby.com/cd/petercole2 and www.cdbaby.com/cd/petercole. There is also information about people you can contact in some states on my website: www.petercoleonline.com.

TLC Africa: Are all your music available at this location?

Cole:
Yes, you can find all of my music on the links listed above.

TLC Africa.:
You were in Liberia in March, any plans to
perform in Liberia in the near future?

Cole: I was in Liberia in March to shoot some scenes for my next music video but unfortunately things didn't go according to plan because I could get the permission I needed to film in some areas. However, I will be back in Liberia in December to have series of concerts in Monrovia and other cities. Watch out for it!

 

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