Renel Duplessis…Owner of “Booga Basement Studio”
Renel Duplessis, was born in “Haiti”, he is the second born child and first son to his parents “Rosita & Reynold”. His younger brother is multi-platinum producer “Jerry Wonda”. His cousin is Grammy award winning Superstar “Wyclef Jean”.
Renel started playing musical instruments as a child in “Haiti”. He began in the Church and was part of a very inspirational gospel band called “Helping Hands”. Together they performed in many places and carved out a future in the music entertainment industry. Renel had a passion for music, and has been credited as the teacher that first showed his younger cousin “Wyclef Jean” the basics of playing the guitar.
When Renel left “Haiti” he came to America, and settled in Brooklyn, New York . His family then moved over the bridge to New Jersey. He remains living in the Garden State, and has lived a part of history through his music. He is one of the founders of the “Booga Basement”, along with family members “Jerry & Wyclef”. There is a certain passion that burns inside of him to hear how music can change the world. He has continued to find ways to help upcoming artists, producers and musicians from all parts of the globe.
Back in the days, the original Booga Basement was owned by his father “Reynold Duplessis”, who deserves all the credit of opening his home to the young people who dreamed of creating music but had no where to go. Renel, Jerry & Wyclef started to come up with a game plan to build a studio down in the little dark basement of the home. Renel took on three jobs at a time to purchase little studio equipment and construction material to build a small vocal booth and sound room. He had a vision that one day the studio will serve a purpose and lead to a path for success. Little did he know that his younger cousin “Wyclef Jean” and his then around the way group (The Fugees) would go on to record the biggest album in Hip-Hop right in the home of the “Booga Basement Studio”. As of today the album “The Score” has sold over 20 million albums, a tiny studio in the ghetto of East Orange, New Jersey created magic and broke down Billboard charts around the globe.
Renel Duplessis has paid his dues in the music industry, sacrificing not only his money but also dedicating his time to making a difference. He has been known to hold down many jobs to help fund and launch Booga Basement, working as a “Chef in a Hotel in the morning, Real Estate agent in the afternoon and on weekends “ Restaurant waiter at the country club, plus car dealer on the side. There were many titles and many odd jobs…..He has spent his years as a leader and is seen as a father figure. So many people respect him as the man that provided the tools and foundation to jump-start so many lucrative and successful careers. From his brother “Jerry Wonda” who went on to become one of the biggest music producers in the industry working with mega stars in entertainment. To his cousin “Wyclef Jean” who is known around the globe as an artist, songwriter and producer. Renel also helped launch acts like “City High” a young trio that sold platinum under the Booga Basement/Interscope label. He played an important role in the career of one of today’s muti-platinum artist “Akon” who was a member of the “Refugee Camp ” back in the days when artists just needed a place to vibe and create. Akon has frequently expressed his love for the Booga Basement as a place that was home to everyone that had a dream in the music industry. It was a place that helped structure the lives of so many talented people, a little spot in the world that made people stop, listen and wonder what was going on behind the walls.
Renel Duplessis continues his dreams in the recording industry by recently re-locating the home studio into a commercial space facility. The studio now operates in Bloomfield, New Jersey and has it’s own staff of producers, engineers, songwriters and is currently in the process of becoming a Digital Record Label and Production company. He has set up contacts from different parts of the world, and will be working with Scandinavian artists from “Norway & Denmark”.
Renel is also a musician and producer, he has made contributions as co-executive producer and executive producer to Wyclef Jean’s: The Preacher’s Son, The Ecleftic & Welcome to Haiti-Creole 101. He has overseen the projects of “Sayuki” an artist that sold platinum in Japan. He has worked with Norway’s own “Siri Stranger” who has performed in many countries. He has also worked with other International stars from “France, London and the Caribbean”. He is currently working with musicians from “Haiti” that will concentrate on “Kompa Music”.
He is the father to music producer”Keith (Lil Wonda )Duplessis” who has followed in the footsteps of his Uncles “Jerry & Wyclef”. Keith who is only 21 years old has produced hit tracks for artists such as Ying Yang Twins, T.I , Samantha Jade and even Paul Simon. The family is full of talented singers, musicians and producers. The Jean and Duplessis entourage continues to shine and work together in the studio, both studios “Booga Basement in New Jersey and Platinum Sound Studio in New York has maintained to be the best places to create hit songs and multi-platinum albums.
Renel Duplessis has visited many countries in the world, he continues to break down barriers and jump over obstacles. He believes his humble beginnings and joyful experiences will give him the motivation and desire to help the many artists and musicians that would like to find a magical place like the Booga Basement to record new music. Creating a home-base for the Superstars of tomorrow…..