Jay Sean: From Medical Student To R&B Superstar A self-professed science geek is the best-selling British male artist in the United States since Elton John. His latest album, and first U.S. release, is called All or Nothing. It features big name collaborations with artists including Lil Wayne, Lil John, Sean Paul and Mary J. Blige.
NPR logo

Jay Sean: From Medical Student To R&B Superstar

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/124858163/124955659" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
Jay Sean: From Medical Student To R&B Superstar

Jay Sean: From Medical Student To R&B Superstar

Jay Sean: From Medical Student To R&B Superstar

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/124858163/124955659" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Jay Sean is the best-selling British artist in the U.S. since Elton John. courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption
courtesy of the artist

Jay Sean is the best-selling British artist in the U.S. since Elton John.

courtesy of the artist

A self-professed science geek is making an explosion on the U.S. Billboard charts. Jay Sean is the best-selling British male artist in the United States since Elton John, and he recently won all four Asian Music Awards for which he was nominated.

Born Kamaljit Singh Jhooti in London, England, Jay Sean acquired a love of soul music through listening to records by Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder and Lionel Richie with his cousins.

"I remember the Back to Front album — I used to listen to that through and through, over and over again, when I was about 11 years old," Sean says in an interview with Scott Simon. "From that age, I started to develop a very strong, mature love for music."

Sean got his start as a member of the Rishi Rich Project, led by British producer Rishi Rich. From his involvement with Rich, he scored a solo record deal and dropped out of Queen Mary, University of London, where he had been studying medicine for more than two years.

Since then, Sean has enjoyed international success. His latest album, and U.S. debut, All or Nothing, was released in 2009 and features big-name collaborations with artists including Lil Wayne, Lil Jon, Sean Paul and Mary J. Blige. Lining up the collaborators was easy, according to Sean.

"Especially in my genre, hip-hop and R&B," he says, "you can literally go straight up to the artist and say, 'I love your music. Would you fancy collaborating on something?' "

Purchase Featured Music

Buy Featured Music

Album
All or Nothing
Artist
Jay Sean
Label
Universal Republic
Released
2009

Your purchase helps support NPR programming. How?

Buy Featured Music

Album
Do You Remember
Artist
Jay Sean
Label
Cash Money Records
Released
2009

Your purchase helps support NPR programming. How?