As the Haitian Music Industry (HMI) band “Nu Look” prepares to celebrate its 15th year anniversary this month; OpaMusic.com is taking you on a trip down memory lane and honor its members for their contribution towards the evolution of Compas music.
It was this month, 15 years ago when Arly Lariviere and Gasman Pierre reunited to form what we know today as one of the most popular Haitian bands in the industry, “Nu Look.” The band came together after Arly Lariviere of the group D-Zine was escorted off the stage in what will probably go down in Compas music history as one of its most shocking moments.
The date was November 18th 2000, the band was performing at Marc Arthur’s nightclub; Arly was getting ready to play his second song for the night titled, You and I, from their newly released album, Match Red when Gasman took to the mic and made the announcement and asked that Arly be escorted out of the club. Arly, appearing to be surprised by what was transpiring went up to band member Zagalo (Tom & Cowbell player) in an attempt to gain sympathy from him and to stop the public embarrassment to no avail. He was escorted out by two authority figures, leaving his keyboard behind.
Nu Look – Assehttp://opamusic.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/nu-look-Asse.mp3
The next day, the news quickly spread like wildfire all over the airwaves and the media contacted both sides; grasping for an explanations as to what really happened. Both sides were given interviews and each side gave their version of the situation that led to the incident.
Arly stated that he didn’t know what exactly led his band members to take such drastic measures against him but he suspected it had to do with the money that he received from the album which he sequenced and produced. He also denied taking more than what was owed to him for his work.
Gasman and D-Zine on the other hand announced the reason behind the coup d’état was because Arly’s head was getting too big, he was mean to the fans, he was a dictator, and he controlled all aspects and decision making for their album. They went further to say; Arly didn’t allow some of the actual band members to participate on the album and instead he called on other musicians in the industry which he felt were more talented than his own band members.
After Arly’s departure, D-Zine continued on without him. Arly went on a brief hiatus from the scenes and started working on putting a new band together. When he was confident enough to proceed with his plans; a meeting was set up with a very well-known producer in the Miami area by the name of, Camanito “Lionel Beeper” Fond-Rose, Arly and former band mate Gasman Pierre who by then was no longer seeing eye-to-eye with his band mates in D-Zine. Gasman felt he was manipulated into turning against Arly and expressed remorse for the whole ordeal. After several meetings, the two men came to an agreement and Lionel Beeper agreed to lend a hand, as a favor to Gasman and came on as an investor. He immediately took the band under his wings and Nu Look was officially born.
Nu Look – Notre Histoirehttp://opamusic.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/Nu-Look-Notre-Histoire.mp3
The road wasn’t easy for the new band. They were faced with a lot of acts of defiance from the die-hard D-Zine fans who weren’t too happy with the new formation. The first year of the band’s existence was the toughest. Their parties were disrupted almost every weekend by fights and tear gas; intentionally released on the dance floor during their performances. That, however, didn’t deter the band from continuing on with their mission to one day become one of the best band in the industry. A lot of people were skeptical about the band’s future at that point but they remained persistent and never surrendered to the opposition.
When Nu Look released their debut album, Big Mistake, in 2002, all of the clouds of doubt were quickly lifted and some even wondered if D-Zine made a Big Mistake by letting these two power houses go? The album was an immediate success. With hit songs like Big Mistake, Ave’w map Mache, Loving You and the song that basically told their story, “Asse”. Even the members of Nu Look didn’t know how much their future would be radiating in the HMI and by then Nu Look was packing venues. The album helped them establish their own identity, fan base and they were no longer living in the shadow of their former band.http://opamusic.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/nu-look-Avem-Map-Mache.mp3
With the success of the first album; Nu Look started feeling the sophomore jitters and took a long time to release their second album causing even the loyalist of fans to worry. Maestro Arly Lariviere stated that the delay was because he lost all of the files which was the result of a computer malfunction but promised since he wrote the songs and sequenced them; it should not be long to reproduce them. Although, it was only two years since the release of their first album, the wait felt like an eternity for some.
The album “Still News” was finally released in the year 2004 and by then the band’s position was officially solidified in the HMI. The album produced several hits which included the gem, Why Do U Say U Love Me?
The success didn’t stop there; Nu Look released their third album “Abo” in 2007 and for the first time we got to hear Gasman take the producer’s chair and produced his first hit song, titled Legacy. Sadly, by then the two men’s relationship started deteriorating due to a lot of internal issues such as; respect, trust, animosity from previous situations, each handling their own booking causing double booking and so on. It’s hard to say who was at fault because they both accused each other of the same wrongdoings.
In January of 2010, Gasman shocked the industry when he announced his departure from the band. Although there were a lot of speculations for several months, even years that the day would come but Gasman always denied if he had any plans to leave the band and also reminded the public that Nu Look was his business as well. He later, without giving too much detail, stated that he struggled with the idea for a long time and could no longer go on working with Arly. Soon after, Gasman with his new band diSip made their grand premiere at a sold out venue in Florida. In September of that year, diSip released its debut album titled, “Mission.”
DiSip enjoyed success for a long time but due to the inconsistency of the band’s members, Gasman took a break an order to come up with a new strategy.
Arly, on the other hand went on with Nu Look and hired Ederse ”Pipo” Stanis as Gasman’s replacement after testing out several other singers… but that too didn’t last. Against the advice of a lot of his fans and industry insiders who thought he would break the two singer formula that everyone had become accustom to and most importantly, that worked; Arly decided to become the front man of Nu Look. And once again; Arly reinvented himself, taking Nu Look to new heights. With the release of two successful albums as the band’s front man, Arly took the risk and proved the HMI wrong.
Nu Look continues to pack venues in FL, NY, Haiti, Paris etc. Arly and Nu Look made Compas history last year in an event presented by Venus International Promotion titled “All Black Affair” during the Labor Day weekend. The event also featured top Haitian band KLASS but it was Nu Look that stole the show. Performing with a full orchestra; spectator watch as Arly claimed his kingdom and proudly sat on his thrown. The evening was replayed and even reenacted over and over again.http://opamusic.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/Nu-Look-Confessions.mp3
Nu Look’s success, of course, is not only due to founding members, Arly Lariviere and Gasman Pierre; there are quite a few whose hard work and dedication played a part in the whole movement.
Former and Current Band Members: Denis “Ti Polis” Nozile Guitar; Ralph Conde – Guitar; Gabriel Laporte –Guitar, Vocals; Chanel Julmice – Drum; Irene “Roro” Edmond – Percussions; Alix Nozile – Congas; Norman Johns – Bass; David Lacomb – Keys; Remy Michel – Guitar; Jorge Dobal –Trombone and more.
Nu Look Studio Albums
On behalf of OpaMusic.com and its entire staff, I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Nu Look on their 15th year anniversary. Congratulations, Nu Look and thank you for giving the industry 15 wonderful years. Do keep the hits coming!
In memoriam: Denis “Ti Polis” Nozile, Joseph Kernizan and Alain Gregoire.
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