KOPO (KOH-poh) is already an internationally successful pop artist acclaimed for his feel good music. While many stateside may not have heard of KOPO yet, His musical footprint is global, thanks to his unusual upbringing. He is a true citizen of the world who draws from the two richest and most honest source materials there are: His personal life experience and his passion for music.
While KOPO's background is reggae music, his music is not singularly defined by genre or parameters. His music is pop reggae, more so than reggae pop, and his sound is undeniable.
The global singer/songwriter currently resides between Jamaica, Tokyo and Los Angeles where he’s taken on the enterprise of writing for his U.S. debut album.
To truly understand KOPO's music, one must become at least somewhat familiar with his backstory. He was born in California, the son of a music teacher, who taught him to play piano at the tender age of 3. But after a difficult childhood, KOPO was eventually adopted and raised by a Samoan family on the South Pacific island of Samoa. There, he lived an island lifestyle in a village, later recalling of the situation as "tribal and close to nature." There were no refrigerators, beds, TVs, or modern amenities. The fact that he didn't have the noise of pop culture buzzing in his ear and distracting him allowed him to connect with, to see, to understand, and to process the world in an organic, filter-free way.
KOPO eventually got his hands on a guitar at the age of 13 and would play for the people in the village, who would gather around and listen to his hauntingly melodic voice. He attended school, sang in a band, and performed at a local nightclub on weekends where he was bitten by the music bug when he got a first taste of what it was like to be paid to perform. He eventually graduated and left Samoa for Hawaii, without a dollar in his pocket. He just boarded the plane and bolted. Since an adoptive family that was paid to provide for his care raised him, he was able to leave quickly without much emotional entanglement. "I had to go find my way," KOPO admitted. And find his way he did!
His music career took off as he shuttled around the world. He sang in a reggae band and toured the globe. KOPO had No. 1 hits in Hawaii and received an offer from Universal Music Japan in 2009. That lead him to take up residence in Japan for a five-year contract in which he released, recorded, and performed all over the country and beyond.
KOPO's music during this period was marketed solely in Japan, where he was a bonafide star. His music was island-oriented pop reggae geared for a specific fanbase. But he knew he wanted to make more universal music that could reach a wider cross-section of people. He moved to Jamaica in February 2015 when his contract with Universal Music Japan expired. Once back stateside, he was able to seek a new deal in America.
KOPO is ready for his global close-up. A unique perspective informs his music and his worldview. His song "Touchdown" served as his introduction to the mainstream market. Produced by Rvssian (Nicky Jam, Sean Paul, Vybz Kartel, Dizzee Rascal) and featuring superstar Shaggy, “Touchdown” is an irrefutable record with charm and an unforgettable melody the song entered the U.S. Billboard dance charts top 100 debut at 41 and was the fastest bullet to #31 on the U.S. Billboard Dance Charts.
While he enjoyed respectable American airplay and Billboard chart action with his Japanese singles "Break Free," "Love Like This," "When I See You Smile," and "I Believe," the latter of which was a top downloaded song on Hawaiian iTunes. His follow-up record "Supernatural," is conceivably his reggae homecoming. Recorded in Jamaican and produced by Gramps Morgan from the legendary reggae band Morgan Heritage, “Supernatural” had the streets shaking from Kingston to New York City.
- Produced but Gramps Morgan
Touchdown feat. Shaggy
- Produced by RVSSIAN
The World Must Change feat. Jah Cure and Gramps Morgan