A look at Jamaica’s Kevin Downswell and his search

A look at Jamaica's Kevin Downswell and his search

Kevin Downswell – Photo -allejam.com

He has performed in many countries and has shared the stage with many famous gospel celebrities, including Michael Smith, Kirk Franklin, Tye Tribbett, and Donnie McClurkin among others.

Westmoreland has been known for being the parish that attracts tourists all year round. It is the westernmost parish on the island and is situated on the south side of Jamaica. It is also the parish where singer Kevin Downswell was born on July 24, 1981.

The ‘You Make Me Stronger’ singer started out in Smithfied, Savanna-La-Mar, before moving to Hellshire Park in the parish of St. Catherine. Regardless of the struggles he faced, such as financial constraints, that would deter anyone from doing well in school, he was always first in his class academically.

In his teenage years, he could not afford to sit the Common Entrance Exam —in order to move up to grammar school (high school)—despite his excellence in primary school, but was later given the opportunity to sit the technical (vocational) entrance exam and passed for Jose Marti Technical in 1993. He then graduated with 6 CXC’s and moved to Kingston for sixth form at Camperdown High School.

He was 13 years old when he and his family realized that he had a gift in music; he would often sing in his leisure time. He would later be chosen to sing at school, church, small functions until he developed his vocals and took on the region as a budding gospel artiste in 2003. That same year he participated in the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission’s (JCDC) Gospel Song Competition and was victorious.

In 2005 he graduated from the University of the West Indies, Mona with a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry, with the hope of becoming a doctor, but then decided to be ordained to the office of an evangelist. It was at that time that he immersed himself into full-time ministry. Kevin had revelations that God’s presence was very much alive and guiding him throughout his life, especially when he most needed direction; this was confirmation that he was right where he was supposed to be.

Downswell has worked his way through the years and earned his titles of motivational speaker, ordained evangelist, recording artiste and author, to name a few with his very successful and established Kevin Downswell Ministries.

A look at Jamaica's Kevin Downswell and his search

Kevin Downswell – Photo – numberonemusic.com

He released his first hit in 2005 where he collaborated with DJ Nicholas and Jermaine Edwards, a song called ‘Naah Bow’; which won the Marlin Awards for Best Reggae Recording of the Year. Since then he has been chosen to be a part of an international compilation album which became the first reggae album to top the New York and Florida charts in 2006. The album is produced by Tennyson Walters of Our Father’s Music Business located in New Jersey, USA. He was also featured on the album for his songs ‘Evildoers (Fret Not)’ and ‘Since the World Didn’t Love Me’ which were being played on radios across the world including Europe, the Caribbean, Japan and Africa. In the same year he went on his first ever international tour in Canada.

He launched his first album entitled ‘Close To You’ in 2008 and his track ‘Close To You’ made the charts the same year; the album gained worldwide recognition hitting top spots in UK, the US and Canada. His gospel ministry presence became more and more renowned both locally and internationally when he released another album ‘The Search Continues’. The album’s track entitled ‘You Make Me Stronger’ was especially well received by his fans as it has, to this day, become an anthem for gospel enthusiasts and Christians worldwide.

Downswell has earned many awards like the New York Love Gospel International Awards Male Artiste of the Year; Youth View Awards Favorite Gospel Artiste in Jamaica (two consecutive years); the Gospel Artiste of the Year’s Star Award; as well as Love 101 FM Engage Alien Award for Artiste of the Year. He also received awards for Best Male Vocalist for Paramount Gospel Music; E.M.E. Award; International Reggae and World Music Award; and the Atlanta Gospel Music Award.

He has performed in many countries and has shared the stage with many famous gospel celebrities, including Michael Smith, Kirk Franklin, Tye Tribbett, and Donnie McClurkin among others.

His talent as a writer and author is shown in the book he published ‘The Search Continues…..The Journey’ which is available for purchase worldwide. He also released his third studio album in June 2016 and his title track ‘All the Way’ was released in May 2016.

With his support from his wife, Marsha, family, friends and fans, not to mention his unwavering trust and faith in God, he has high hopes for the future. He deflects all praises to God and has a unique and strong passion for Jesus Christ.

HONORS AND AWARDS

2012

International

  • Atlanta Gospel Music Awards 2012 Nomination: Praise and Worship Song of the Year for “God is Moving”
  • Atlanta Gospel Music Awards 2012 Nomination: Best Collaboration for “Already Done” (with Ryan Mark).

2011

Local

  • Paramount MEGA Gospel Awards 2011: Best Collaboration of the Year 2010 “That’s Enough” featuring Prodigal Son
  • Paramount MEGA Gospel Awards 2011: Best Male Vocalist of the Year 2010
  • EME award nominee for Gospel Artiste of the year International
  • Atlanta Gospel Music Award for Best Praise and Worship Song for “Close To You”

2010

Regional:

  • Marlin Awards – Caribbean Gospel Music Awards: Praise and Worship Recording of the Year – “Close To You” 2006
  • Marlin Awards (Caribbean Gospel Music Awards): Reggae Recording of the Year; for “Naah Bow”, with DJ Nicholas and Jermaine Edwards.

TOURS AND SPECIAL MENTIONS

2011 Release of singles: “God is Moving” and “Already Done” U.S and Canada tour

2010 Release of singles: “Forgiven” and “That’s Enough” U.S and Caribbean Tour

2009 Release of two Christmas Singles “What a Christmas Morning” and “Thank you for Christmas.”

2008 Canada Tour

2006 First International Tour – Canada

2006 Took part in The Reggae For Christ Project (with two songs “Evildoers”-Fret Not and “Since the world didn’t love me” which created history on the International music charts by being the first Gospel album to ever top the New York and South Florida charts simultaneously, a project spearheaded by Tennyson Walters of Our Father’s Music Business (O.F.M.B) based in New Jersey, USA.

2005 Graduated from U.W.I with Bachelors degree in Biochemistry

2003 JCDC National Gospel Song Winner with the entry: “Praise”

2003 JCDC Gospel Song Competition Award: Most Outstanding Performer

2001 Tastee Talent Contest 3rd Place Winner “Would you Try Jesus”

1996 Tastee Talent Contest Top Ten Finalist

(Adapted from www.kevindownswell.com/the-artist/profile)

By Alexandra Daley


Learn more about Kevin Downswell:

Website: www.kevindownswell.com

Social Media: @KevinDownswell

Marvia Providence & Kevin Downswell in a Powerful Gospel Concert

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