Masicka Talks ‘Generation Of Kings’ Creative Process: ‘My only competition a me’

Masicka opens up about the pressures of recording new music to top his previous releases


Masicka is unpacking his musical success with his recent albums amid his internationally acclaimed sophomore album Generation of Kings.

The dreaded feat of following up a debut album with another brilliant body of work is a rite of passage that makes or breaks musical artists globally. The pressure of outdoing one’s performance is never greater than the inaugural presentation that prompts breakout success and sets the bar. Many artists do not make it past the freshman set, much less create an equally great sophomore effort. However, that fate did not befall dancehall star Masicka.

During a recent interview with Seani B on BBC Radio 1 Xtra, the Def Jam Music artist admitted that the pressure was on for the creation of Generation of Kings following his critically acclaimed debut effort 438. Seani called Masicka’s bodies of work “two classic albums,” adding that it is a massive accomplishment for a dancehall artist. He then questioned how difficult it was to follow up on his initial success.

“You know the pressure aguh high because everybody a say you can’t do it again,” Masicka explained. “But the thing is, as much as how mi did feel pressured, mi enjoyed it, you what I mean? Mi like work like that. Mi like outdo mi self; my only competition a me. So, mi get up every day and try better mi self.”

Masicka / Courtesy

“So, with that, going into the ‘Generation of Kings’, the main problem was not having the album sounding like ‘438’. Not the same songs but just the whole concept of the album,” he added.

Masicka’s freshman effort 438 debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard Reggae Albums chart in December 2021 and spent seven weeks on the chart, outdoing several other projects at the time from other major artists that only spent one week on the tally. During the interview, the dancehall giant called the debut album “a learning experience.” Meanwhile, he told Billboard in 2023 that for Generation Of Kings, he envisioned “Triumph. Just transitioning and taking a greater step towards fulfilling your dreams. This album was basically telling the people dem that I’m ready.”

Masicka on Generation Of Kings success

Generation of Kings also debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard Reggae Albums chart in December 2023 and enjoyed a three-month streak at No. 1 on Apple Music in Jamaica, marking the longest-running chart-topper on the platform. The sophomore set is Masicka’s first full-length album release since he signed to Def Jam Music in 2023. A big part of the message of this album for the artist was uplifting black people, self-belief, and power. “With Generation of Kings mi try fi be more motivational. Mi set a tone pon di album,” Masicka said.

He went on to explain, “Mental health is real. Depression real. A lot of people a struggle and nuh know seh dem a struggle. So yuh see the sound first was a rebellious sound, a freedom sound, when you hear Peter Tosh, Bob Marley’ Buffalo Soldier’, ‘One Love’, the music was a sound of freedom, a revolutionary music wah yuh can jus hear it and you feel no pain.”

Masicka continued, “The world set the ting now where materialistic tings determine how much yuh loved and how much respect yuh get. But from you have self-belief and believe inna yuh self and say you a king, nobody can’t mek mi feel less than mi self. No award, no recommendation, no validation can’t mek mi feel better than how mi feel right now. Mi take it with appreciation and mi grateful fi it but mi already feel God mek mi special.”

On the album title “Generation of Kings,” Masicka explained, “Yeah man, wol’ a we a kings. Da self-power deh, da self-belief deh. Da self-doubt deh out a we now. All a we a king. And mi coulda seh me a di king of this generation but mi waan dem know seh di wol’ a we a king.”

Masicka talks signing to Def Jam

The dancehall star also discussed what it’s been like since signing to Def Jam Music. While he admitted that he was reluctant about signing to any major label at first, what he has learned since embarking on the journey is how much farther he can push his career with a team of that magnitude. “I think being with them mi kinda learn the business some more and see what it take fi really be the megastar mi can be. Mi think mi see the vision a little bit clearer. Mi always had that vision but sometimes, as an individual no man is an island and it take a collective fi really move forward. ”

“So, being with them, mi kinda see a clearer path as to how things run, how to get things done. It’s more organized and it’s an everyday thing so the music is a bigger business than we actually think. It’s just a growth thing for me personally,” he added.

Since G.O.K, Masicka has released hit collaborations with Shenseea (Hit and Run) and Romain Virgo (Been There Before), each of which has been super successful in its own right and has kept the buzz going for the dancehall star. Meanwhile, Masicka is still rolling out music videos for the records on his album. Most recently, he released the visuals for “Reverse Time,” which has been waxed lyrically by fans and critics alike since its debut.

The G.O.K. author also shared that he is currently working on the music video for the Afrobeats track “Fight For Us” featuring Nigerian artist Fave. So, that may very well be coming up next.