London-born singer/songwriter/producer Jay Sean became an overnight sensation for American audiences when his monster hit “Down” hit the airwaves 2009. In one stealth move, the vibrant performer became the first British singer in nearly 30 years to hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. What most fans in the U.S. didn’t realize though, is that Jay Sean was a platinum-selling, award-winning artist long before we’d heard of him.
After he dropped out of medical school to pursue a professional recording career with Virgin Records in 2003, Jay Sean made waves in Europe with his silky vocals and boyish good looks. Given his Southeast Asian heritage, it was no surprise that fans embraced him in India, and he captured audiences and influenced other singers in the Middle East, Japan, China and Russia as well.
Once his newfound fame with with Cash Money and Universal came about, he was able to travel back to fans that had been supporting him globally for several years. Jay Sean is currently recording a second album with Cash Money, which will drop this Spring, and there is no doubt that he’ll grow larger with each new song.
Jay Sean‘s success has led him to nearly every point on the planet, so asking him for a Top 7 list of travel destinations for UrbLife.com’s ‘Carry On’ might have been a headache – but he had a lot of ideas!
Read on as Jay Sean tells you about the places, in no particular order of ‘favorites’, that he thinks you should consider for your next getaway!
1. Puerto Rico
Amazing. They have beautiful everything there. They’ve got beautiful beaches, beautiful people, beautiful food, and culture. The cool thing about the culture there, for example, when we go down there to the nightclubs, you can get amongst the locals. That’s something that I actually really enjoy, is getting amongst the locals.
The Reggaeton thing, especially with the culture and the music and the dance there. Anybody dances with everybody and it’s just fun. It’s not like you try to step up to a girl and she’s like, “no I’m taken” or whatever. It’s just fun. Everybody is open and you can just have fun.
I haven’t been to any other area apart from San Juan where I did the performance. I guess that’s what’s most famous. I’m sure if you ask people who actually live there, they will tell you to go places besides what’s well known.
This is a place you have to go to because it’s so futuristic – it’s so new. It’s one of the newest countries in the world. The development that has gone into that place is just insane. Because of the recent oil money that they have discovered, they’ve really built up that area. I would say the whole place is one big Disneyland.
It’s just amazing. You come with a picture of what you want and they make it. The ruler of Dubai is like, “I want to make a huge palm tree in the middle of the ocean, and each leaf of the palm tree will have a house on it” and they can make it. It’s just amazing that you can go to a place like this. It’s something you never seen before.
I would go to Mumbai really. It’s awesome. If you haven’t seen the images or footage of what India is like, it’s really like the most diverse place I’ve ever been in terms of social class and wealth. I mean you can have a palace, and right next to the palace is a slum village, then next to that will be the most amazing hotel you’ve ever seen in your whole life.
I think that disreprency between lifestyles is something you really have to witness. It’s just incredible. It’s basically you live like a king there if you want, or you could get amongst the locals and see how they live and it’s just amazing. The culture is insane.
Antigua is one of my favorite places, and one of my favorite holiday destinations without a doubt. I love the Caribbean anyway – you can’t go wrong with that. It’s really the people of Antigua. The people there are so so friendly – I just had the best time. I’ve been to a lot of Caribbean islands, but that’s probably one of my favorite. You should definitely go and check that out. It’s beautiful.
Japan is so different because it’s… the cliché is technology and how super high-tech everything is, and yes, it is that. Everything there is the most advanced thing you’ve ever seen in your whole life. Robots, gadgets, and all that galore. So when you go to Japan, it’s a country where they believe that you don’t need…
A lot of people don’t speak English there. People learn Japanese if they want to get on and do business in Japan. So it goes the other way around, and I kinda like that. I like that they can feel like they can have their own existence and their own culture and lifestyle. It’s for that very reason that when you go there, you know that you are somewhere else. It’s one of those places where you’re like, “Wow I really am somewhere different.”
The food is awesome – I love Japanese food anyway. Don’t go and have Japanese food in the hotel. Go outside and go find the local places, and see what real Japanese food is like. That’s what I’m a firm believer in. When you go to these countries, every country is going to have a Marriott or a Hilton, but don’t eat there, don’t go there for drinks. Go out! Get amongst the locals. If it’s safe, you should definitely do that.
There is nothing like it. You have to go to London. One of the best things about London is that we still preserve all of the history that we have. From the days of the kings, Queen Elizabeth from back in the day, and King Henry VIII – you can see all of that still exists. Parts of the castles are left in the middle of a busy city. You’ll see brick walls, which was part of a castle that still exists. It’s just amazing that that type of culture and history still exists. I love it.
London… in terms of nightlife, New York comes close. It is a statistic that you can visit a new restaurant every day of the year for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and you still won’t go into all the different in London alone. It’s a very cool place to go.
I actually live in New York right now. New York has become my new home. The thing I love about New York is, especially I have to say Manhattan really, because I live in Manhattan. I’ve never in my life been to a place where at any moment, during the day or during the night, you can have anything that you want and it’s just amazing.
The fact that 24-hour diners and stuff exists like that… a diner is literally on every block. You can have food whenever you want. You can go clubbing and to the after party. The clubs are open to 9:00 am – you can find spots around Manhattan.
For example, I wake up in the morning and around the corner is a deli. Then there are restaurants and bars. There’s a theater two blocks away from where I am. Then there’s a shopping central in same area. Anything you want is around you, and that’s the best thing about New York.
**Videos above are from various Youtube users