A little while ago, Backayard Magazine in collaboration with World A Reggae sat down with the new Jamaican Sensation Romario Sebastian Anthony Bennett aka Runkus.
We liked to know more information about him and his music. Enjoy the read and make sure you check out one of Runkus’ Performances!
1. Who’s Runkus?
Runkus is love … (Laughs)
The name was given to me by my moms friend Pauline Schloss. My mom had a difficult pregnancy due to Kidney stones and she was always in pain, she would rub my moms tummy and address me as Runkus, saying ” Runkus why you giving mommy so much trouble?” It doesn’t have a meaning but am here to give meaning to it… Am at chapter 22 and the book that am writing is called RUNKUS.
Runkus is about love, very cliche, but I try to love what I do and do what I love. ( you know wha mean?). The way I play music should reflect the way I treat people, play football, cook, speak (you know wha mean?) it should all be one, reflecting love!
2. How did your fathers music (dancehall artist Determine) influence the way you look at music?
Given, my father Determine, “big up everytime”… Growing up with him I was always influence by good music, well rounded set of music . Me and Pops would play Dennis Brown, Garnet Silk, Sizzla, Capleton, Culture, old school vibes, foundation music even rap more while. I get to go to studio with him, rehearsals, shows. I was in, I was plugged in to the music business but the side that I saw was love, the purity of it, just the rawness of it. People see like Capleton, Sizzla and other artists on TV or on stage.. Me? I see them right next to me, inna real life, them a uncle to I. Me realize seh at the end of the day people a people. (Yuh know wha mean?)
Some people just bless to be given a voice, to be given a reason to spread the message. That is when I grow up I realized that. As a youth just deh yah a run up and down and a plug out things inna the studio and a sing songs and a tek whey mi fada songs (laughs) I learned the real joy of music the free joy of music from an early age.
3. You are already known for creating an almost new kind of music, how would you describe this fusion between hip hop/ska/reggae?
True…. As time goes further music gonna get new because this generation of musicians, we grew up on rap, reggae, dancehall, hip hop, so our music is going to sound like that, it goes unnaturally even without we trying or when we a try foundation or whatever we a try sound futuristic. We still a go have that old vibes deh it’s just a mixture of everything. There’s nothing new under the sun, nothing original but music overall is an interpretation of other music that we have heard already, (you know wha mean?) there’s limited amount of chord, progression that can be used, it’s just that we put them together that they make a unique sound. No one will ever play a piece of music like Bob Marley or Runkus or whosoever , right?
At the end of the day it’s just music man, the sound, the heart beat.. You can take on everything , once the music penetrate the heart that’s the music..music for your ears is just music for your ears and music for the heart is what we try to do.
4.. One track that you did in 2015, we think really needs to be mentioned is the collaboration with you and Marla Brown. Can you tell us about that?
True, respect man, blessings. Marla Brown.. I met her through Jason Panton, he was doing some work with her at one point and she wanted a collaboration, and I didn’t know of her (beautiful soul, beautiful beautiful soul). She sent me the tune and (laughs) funny thing bout they tune we were talking about two different topics until we realize we were talking about the same things in different ways. She called me back to say it was cool, we were telling a story within a story, I just tell my story of what was going on. She was talking about “one shot” whereas the youth them getting shot down physically by police. I was talking about police shooting us down in every form whether by guns, by just saying we a ghetto youths without a dream, not only police but any one who abuses authority.
It was a joy to work with such a wonderful soul as Marla Brown.
5. Recently you released the “Move In” collaboration with Oneness Records from Munich, how did that collaboration came about?
I did a track with K-Jah sounds from Poland entitled RUN, like three (3) years ago and it was mixed by Umberto Echo (he mixes for Oneness Record) They wanted me on a ridim and K- Jah linked me. The ridim is called Retrolocks, I did a song called “Kindness”, it was a joy from that. This leads to the production of the “Move In” EP for Oneness Records from Germany… It’s music you know and music must be made.
6. Can you tell us what you want to achieve with your music?
It’s hard to put a value on music, some wants a Grammy or to get millions from it, them thing deh nice, that’s a joy, but one of my biggest joy if someone says ” I didn’t kill myself cause you inspire me or I feel so happy because I didn’t have that abortion as your song gave me hope, or is you mek me a DJ ” ( you know wha mean?) dem thing deh! I aspire to inspire .
Mi waan mek some music whey sound like the rivers, the birds singing, trees flowing ( you know wha mean?) If my music can match up to nature then that would be a great accomplishment for I.
7. When and where can people see you performing this Summer?
This Summer we have the Move In tour. I will be performing with my band (Old Skl Bond) at Reggae Jam on July 30th, Reggae Geel on August 6th and Rototom on August 14th… So look out man, nice vibes … great performance!!!!!!
More about Ruckus? Check his Facebook Page!