Since we are all celebrating the release and success of The Lion King remake, I thought it only right for today’s Melanin King Monday feature to honor the original singing voice of young Simba, Jason Weaver! If you did not know, he was the great voice behind the timeless songs that everyone from that decade knows and immediately smiles about when they come on. Since the 90’s Jason has been gracing us with his gifts and has proven he is here to remain as KING!
I will admit that Jason Weaver’s most recognizable role is probably that of his portrayal of a preteen Michael Jackson in The Jackson’s: An American Dream mini series movie. Those of us of a different generation also remember him as Jerome on the hit sitcom Thea and even further back, Brewster’s Place. Acting is definitely one of the callings on Jason Weaver’s life. However, he also has a love for music and based on his most notable roles (those mentioned above) it’s obvious music loves him too. Sir Elton John himself picked him for the singing voice of Simba. How crazy spectacular is that?! I mean, he not only was able to play Michael Jackson, but he sang the songs himself…and sounded JUST LIKE HIM! I’m an 80’s baby and the King of Pop was heard in my household…loudly! When Jason played this role, it truly brought up the question on if he was lip syncing because he was THAT good. His study of the late great King’s influxes and runs and all of those other musical things you have to know to sing shows how dedicated Jason is to his craft. Jason also has recorded an album of his own entitled “Love Ambition” and had an EP. Recently, he also posted a video clip of Chingy’s “One Call Away” and alluded to more music coming. Can we just say… FINALLY and roll our eyes because we’ve waited long enough!
As Jason grew up his genre of role changed and he slowly moved into more “adult” movies. The one thing that I noticed is that he was starting to play the “high sidekick” a lot and I prayed he did not start to get type cast. So often, child actors begin to only receive roles that shed a light on them that is not truly allowing their gifts to be expressed and then one day, we only see them as “that guy that was friends with such and such in that one movie and that other movie”. Having followed his entire career I did not want that to happen to him. We saw an early flex of talent since a young age and I didn’t want it to be ruined with type casting. Thank God, movie roles in Drum Line, The Lady Killers and Note to Self exist. I realize that actors choose the roles they audition for and accept. But, because these are my honest thoughts and opinions, I can honestly say I’m grateful and hopeful that someone noticed what I did.
Nowadays, you can catch Jason on his IG with some of the most hilarious posts, throwback cartoons and old school videos. My favorite posts though, are those for the culture. We get a lesson and perspective not from a place of just because you’re black you should believe this. No, the insight comes from a place of common sense and also this is just the right thing to do. There’s nothing but positive energy and open dialogue. Interaction with his followers are what makes the Weaver experience (that’s what I call it lol) so awesome. Humility and a grateful heart toward his fans are what keeps us all coming back. So many celebs fail to connect with their followers for whatever reasons they have. If you follow Jason Weaver, you know interaction and genuine conversation takes place in the comments. As long as you’re respectful, everything stays copacetic. Otherwise, the followers will drag you to the fullest extent.
The point in all of this is to say that Jason Weaver is EXTREMELY underrated and unappreciated. He is one of the greats and has shown over the years that he is timeless and will never lose his momentum. Consistency, faith and a humble spirit have allowed him to remain in the industry that has destroyed so many. Let’s pay homage and give him his flowers while he’s here. Follow him, support the projects he’s involved in and let’s love on him while we have him in our midst. He’s an iconic symbol to our culture and his gifts are important to our culture. I salute you Jason Weaver. Thank you for everything you’ve done and for every door that has been opened for those young kings following in your footsteps. You are truly a Melanin King!