In the midst of her active year on local stages, Tanya Stephens is making a comeback to the Sting stage following an 18-year hiatus. Expressing her admiration for the show, Stephens emphasized her connection to Jamaica, her home country, and her enthusiasm for performing on platforms rooted in the island.
“As a Jamaican and a Jamaican artiste, Jamaica has shaped and influenced me. All my inspiration for writing music comes from Jamaica, where my life unfolds. I naturally want to be part of everything happening in Jamaica and participate in the shows. I’m always delighted to perform in Jamaica for my people who are undoubtedly here. So, I’m always happy to be in Jamaica, always happy,” explained Stephens.
Despite her long absence from the show, she commended Sting founder Isaiah Laing and his team for their unwavering dedication. Regarding her approach to the show, she expressed her intention to channel the dancehall diva attitude from her hits, such as ‘Boom Wuk,’ to bring excitement to Boxing Day.
“For me, it’s just about having fun. We’re going to enjoy ourselves because that’s what Sting is about. It’s all about dancehall, the epitome of dancehall. There has never been another festival or show of this magnitude that truly represents dancehall. Whether you like it or not, Sting is dancehall, and dancehall is Sting,” Stephens added.
“I’m coming there to embody dancehall. When I come to Sting, I’m bringing my dancehall self. Even though I just turned 50 and Sting is turning 40, I find myself still in the mix. It’s lively. This is the best Sting to celebrate my ‘out-ness.'”
Extending her ‘out-ness’ into the New Year, Stephens revealed plans for a special project in February for fans who, like her, are “rough but loving.”
“I have a project coming out next year… I’ve teamed up with two brands that represent me… we’re launching it in time for the love season because it’s a love affair between me and my two brands. I want to make that period of time more inclusive because it usually excludes people like me. You know, we’re a bit more rough, a bit less stereotypical when it comes to hallmark romance. Our thing is a little different, and usually, nobody caters to us, so we have.”
While keeping details about the associated brands and the nature of the project under wraps, Stephens playfully added, “As we get closer to it, we will unveil what we have coming, but it’s going to be fun, and I can’t wait.”