The Gleaner: KINGSTON, Jamaica, By Shanel Lemmie – As he prepares to release his fourth studio album – The Gentle Man on March 1 – Romain Virgo is preparing for a series of performances.

Virgo, who is affectionately known to the Jamaican people as ‘the love doctor’, is slated to take the stage at his own shows in St Ann, Montego Bay and St Elizabeth from March 8 to 10.

Fan will also have the opportunity to see him much sooner as he hits the Lost in Time stage on February 24 at the Hope Gardens. Virgo explained that after seeing last year’s staging of the event, he was eager to join in the New Wave crew’s next showing. Recalling the clips he saw online last year he said, “Mi a say this is gonna be one of the biggest shows in Jamaica in years to come. If this is how the strata of it look, it’s gonna be like how we have [Reggae] Sumfest and Rebel Salute and all those shows that kind of make them name are still here, that is what Lost in Time is gonna be or probably even greater. When I saw it, I was like ‘wow I would love to be a part of something like this’. And here I am, on it, [a] year later.”

Though he can’t recall who reached out first, Virgo says he has always been a fan of Protoje.

“We always a link up at shows and we always a talk bout working together as well so I feel like it was only natural. Like this would have happened either way so it’s a blessing and we [are] grateful.”

As for what to expect from him on the show, Virgo’s sole word was ‘energy’.

“Expect energy. I will be singing my heart and my soul out. I know this is kind of a different crowd for me so I just want to show this crowd what I do and I know they will enjoy it,” he said.

BEST ALBUM YET

Marking 16 years since he burst on the musical scene, Virgo also spoke about his growth and how it’s reflected on his newest album, which he calls “the best one yet”. “I guess with growth, new experiences and looking back at the past and some of the things that we did, mi just feel like me reach a one point now where I personally found myself. I feel like the greatest part of anybody’s musical career is just that point where they find themself,” he said.

With the first single off the album, Been There Before featuring dancehall artiste Masicka, already released, Virgo says he is impatiently awaiting the moment he gets to share all he has been working on.

Virgo’s last studio album, Lovesickwas released in 2018.

He says since then he has unlocked a new side of his musical psyche.

“I’ve been working on this album for over three years now, from before COVID. So when COVID came, it’s like it opened a different door to new ideas and new ways of writing and just different stories to talk about.”

Speaking on the reception to the single thus far, Virgo said, “It’s been beautiful so far, everybody seems to love it. It’s one of them uplifting songs that tell you no matter what you’re going through right now, at the end of the day, you’re gonna see light at the end of the tunnel.”

He continued, “People would know me from mostly doing love songs. So there’s a nice mixture between, life love and just everything [on the album]. There’s a balance between social commentary songs and love songs.”