It isn't everyday that Canadian independent urban artists achieve Top 20 radio and video success on their initial offerings. For Ottawa-based R&B singer Massari and record label Capital Prophet Records, this achievement is the result of many years of hard work and perseverance.
The 24-year old Sagittarius, born in Beirut, Lebanon, moved to Montreal at the age of 10 and at 13 he moved to Ottawa where he currently resides. The trilingual artist - he speaks English, French and Arabic fluently - cites Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, and Aretha Franklin as musical influences. However, growing up he has been exposed to various styles of music and because of that his biggest influence is legendary Arabic singer George Wassouf. "I sing from my heart and George Wassouf taught me to do that", says Massari about how this legendary singer has affected his music.
In 2002, Massari recorded and released "Spitfire" which garnered heavy rotation on Ottawa radio stations. Since then, Massari has been steadily writing and developing his sound and is back in 2005 with his self-titled debut album set for release on May 31st, 2005 through MapleNationWide/Universal. The lead single off the release "Smile For Me" features former Bad Boy Entertainment recording artist Loon. "I'm definitely very selective about the records I get on. It didn't matter if he was an established artist or not, it was just the quality of the record, the quality of the music that made me want to get involved", says Loon about his involvement with Massari and the Capital Prophet Records crew. "I'm very proud to be one of the first Canadian male R&B singers to record with a major recording artist from the States", says Massari. The end result was a hit single that spent 24 weeks on the Top 40 chart, peaking at #18 (BDS CHR) in Canada. Canadian award-winning music video director RT! was responsible for making the "Smile For Me" video one of the hottest urban videos by a Canadian artist. The video was immediately added to heavy rotation at MuchMusic, MuchVibe, and MTV Canada. Canada and the United States were the first to play "Smile For Me", however other countries such as Germany, Australia, Brazil and the UK have begun playing the hit song.