NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Leon Hepburn, a 27-year-old Bahamian musician and YouTuber, has gained stardom by creating captivating reaction singing videos.
In an interview with Eyewitness News, Hepburn said he grew up in a house filled with singers where music became an outlet and tool when hard times struck.
With millions of views on YouTube and over 140,000 organic subscribers generated in the past six to seven months, the former Melia bartender of three years said he never imagined having thousands of people share and support his love for music.
With the recent closing of the resort for two years, Hepburn was disengaged and without a job.
But he said the unfortunate event prompted him to follow his heart in music and his faith played a large role in him taking the leap to create content on the video streaming platform.
“Currently, I am without a job,” he said.
“But I believe that God brought me this far down this journey for a reason, like he was looking out for me before I got the news.”
Amid the pandemic, Hepburn took advantage of the time home and mastered his craft, uploading and producing popular singing reaction videos on a regular basis.
“YouTube has helped me a lot by me just being myself and doing what I love,” he said with a smile.
“It’s been amazing, you know.
“I started last year July. I made the decision to start a YouTube channel during the lockdown.
“One of my favorite YouTubers shouted out my first video.
“He’s the voice actor for Cleveland Brown from Family Guy.
“Yeah, he’s like the new voice actor, so it was mind-blowing for me at that moment.
“And it was all the motivation I needed to keep posting.”
Hepburn said his channel, which has allowed him to reach an international audience, has been a rewarding experience.
He sang at Olympic gold medalist Shaunae Miller’s and Maicei Uibo’s wedding in February 2017.
He has also collaborated with world-renowned rapper and artist Harry Mack, who was featured on the Ellen show, and freestyled with Grammy award winner Kendrick Lamar.
For Hepburn, music is a way of life.
He said his journey of loving music began at the tender age of seven by starring in Christmas plays.
“I would notice how people would react when I sing,” he said.
“They would react differently.”
He continued: “Music has made a way for me. Growing up, it’s opened a lot of doors for me to meet people I never would have imagined in a million years of meeting. So, yeah, it’s been awesome.”
Hepburn said he believes his channel has given him the freedom to express himself and to show the world what he has to offer.
He said he hopes to inspire other aspiring singers to find their voice.
Notwithstanding his international fan base, Hepburn said the support of his countrymen means the world to him.
“I just want to say to all my Bahamian brothers and sisters to come and show support,” he said.
“It’s awesome having support from all around the world, but it’s even great when your own kind would come and show support.”
When asked how he would describe his music, he responded: “Inspirational, motivational and encouraging.
“Growing up, you know I always loved to encourage people with music like keeping a smile on their face and I always had a vision someday that I would be a positive role model for people around the globe, in The Bahamas.”
Asked what advice he would give other upcoming artists, the Bahamian artist advised them to really focus on their craft and to continue doing what they love.
Written by Eyewitness News Intern Jade Russell