Singer-Songwriter Arlen Seaton Gave up a Career in Medicine to Pursue Music


Singer-songwriter Arlen Seaton

Photo courtesy of Arlen Seaton


Arlen Seaton's voice has been described as easy as molasses. In 2018, this burgeoning musician decided to forgo a career in medicine after completing medical school. Instead, the Antigua-born singer-songwriter pursued his passion for music full-time. While a scary decision for Arlen, he felt completely liberated.


Arlen grew up singing in his father’s church. He was also a member of the St. Georges Anglican Boys Choir in St. Kitts and the Sanctuary Choir in Antigua. Music was always a very important aspect of his childhood. His parents both sang in the church and at home were fans of Peabo Bryson, Luther Vandross, and Celine Dion. While he excelled in science as a young boy, Seaton always hoped to have a career in music.


After high school, Seaton attended Morehouse College, a top-ranked HBCU with notable alumni including filmmaker, Spike Lee, and actor, Samuel L. Jackson. He initially majored in music and biology and later chose the more pragmatic option, biology. However, Arlen did find time for voice studies every semester under the guidance of Dr. Melvin Foster and was also a member of the Morehouse College Glee Club. Seaton graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Biology in 2011 and went on to study medicine at the American University of Antigua.


While attending medical school, Arlen could not resist his craving for the music scene. He collaborated with singer, Jenny Medina on the duet ‘Christmas by My Side’ and was featured on the song ‘We Are’ on York’s Traveller album.


While a promising career in medicine seemed to lie ahead for him, Arlen couldn’t shake his passion for music. He came face-to-face with the reality that music is something he was meant to do. Soon after completing medical school, Seaton co-founded the band Blakk Gold with close friends Hani Hechme and Venisa Gittens. They performed at local venues and festivals and opened for international artists Marica Griffith and Buju Banton before parting ways. “I valued our time together because it helped me develop as a performance artist,” Seaton said.

Now a solo artist, Seaton describes his music as eclectic and genre-fluid. His music is influenced by artists like Cinematic Orchestra, Coldplay, Anderson Pak, and Kendrick Lamar. Seaton’s music relies heavily on his lyricism and his storytelling style, a by-product of his Caribbean heritage. Seaton released his first single, ‘Queen Summer’ in late 2020, a collaborative effort with New York producer David Sisko. Seaton has also started writing for other musicians including Blade, Antigua’s current Soca Monarch.


Enjoy Arlen's latest songs on "Sessions by Soothe"


Right before the 2020 global pandemic, Seaton squeezed in a couple of live performances. Since then, he has been focused on writing new music. He is set to release his next single, 'Broken Glass' on July 23. "The song is about being in a romantic relationship that is so intense that you just enjoy the ride while you brace for the end," he explained.


Once the pandemic restrictions have eased, Seaton said he would like to go on tour. “I couldn’t be more grateful for the opportunity I have received to live my truth, and for the people who have supported and encouraged me on my journey,” he said.


Arlen’s music can be found on YouTube, Instagram, Spotify, and other streaming services.