Quick Questions with Tela Wangeci

-Oibiee

Still speaking with Superheros, this week we met Lady Immortalius! Read on to find out a lot about her!


Morning Rabbit or Night owl? What are the top 3 spaces you enjoy working from?

Ironically I am both. I get super creative between 10 pm – 2 am and 5 am – 8 am. I guess it depends on what my daytime schedule looks like. 


We are creating a comic book about the superheroes of the African music industry, describe your superpower as a music journalist?

Immortality, I definitely want to experience the evolution of music in 100 years and still be have the ability to tell the stories vividly. 


Tell us the journey to becoming a Music Journalist?

I really can’t pinpoint when exactly my journey with music started. As a kid, I always sang along to radio songs word by word and also wrote a lot of poems and spoken word pieces, so I often thought I would be a rapper. Eventually, I gave up the dream and decided to be a journalist when I was in High School. I streamlined my passion for writing into being a culture and music journalist when I was 17 years. I initially worked as an intern for Ruby V who is a Hip Hop journalist and learned the foundations of Hip Hop. I also began writing Tangaza Magazine which focuses on East African music around 2018. Around this time my interest in Music Business especially PR carved out and I began working with my mentor Camille Storm at her  PR boutique Camille&Co.  Despite all this I would say my big break came in 2021 after I did an international piece for Pan African Music Magazine on the Rise of Drill in Kenya. Currently, I am a writer at NATIVE Magazine. My favourite part of being a music journalist is getting to collect music pieces from different timelines and seeing the deeper evolution of music not only as a genre but as a lifestyle. To anyone who considering a similar journey:

It’s not all glitz and glamour talking to artists but it’s more of documenting music so people can always go back to the archives and find more information on the craft. It’s never about your name because the story you tell needs to be bigger than you.  


What is your favorite African meal?

Can I say potatoes? These were the best things ever created. From mashed potatoes to bhajia to masala fries I literally think if there is Potato Juice I’ll be the first to drink it up.


What passion projects are you managing at the moment?  What inspired you to start or join them?

I am working on getting my music podcast back on track. It’s called the Newz Podcast and I started it with my best friend Fadhili mainly because there is too much music coming out of Kenya and the mainstream media only supports mainstream artists. We mainly wanted to plug the people into new underground music. Apart from that, I am also working on another music podcast with a good colleague of mine called Antoine. It’s called Underground 10 and this is more of a comical and music podcast where we discuss the latest happenings in Kenya’s music scene. 


Team Apple Music/ Spotify/ Boomplay/ Soundcloud? Tell us the Top 5 songs on your music player

TEAM APPLE TILL THE DEATH OF ME. 

1. God’s Incense – Shooterkhumz

2. I Get Around – 2Pac ft Digital Underground

3. Love Me or Leave Me – UKWELI ft Xenia Manasseh

4. Bag – Kxffy ft Gaccu OukoSeason & Muthoka

5. Tingisha Kidole – XPRSO ft Rvmp, Mars Maasai &MR.LU*


Where is the most unlikely place you have found an artist or a songwriter and how did it happen?

TikTok. There is an artist called Unco Jingjong and his chorus from “Dancehall” was trending for a hot minute on Kenyan Tiktok but I couldn’t really identify the song or the writer because there were no credits to the song and his voice is pretty deep so you can’t hear some of the chorus words. 


Who are some of your favourite African writers and editors in the music industry?

First off, the whole NATIVE newsroom. I honestly feel blessed to be surrounded by such a competent team that I continuously get to learn from on an everyday basis.  Itty Okim also, pens his stories so passionately and meticulously. Also, Charles Myambo who writes for the Hype Magazine 


Your name is going in the hall of fame for people who impacted the music industry, what would your quote be?

Those who are blinded by grief can’t differentiate between prey and bait. 

– Tela wangeci

Quick Questions with Aibee Abidoye

There’s a new super hero in town! She’s dogged, quite aggressive and unafraid to stand up to anyone in the way of her achieving her goals!


If you were a city in  Nigeria which would you be and why? 

Ikoyi because I’m an introvert who likes to be close to things that are happening and Ikoyi is hidden and quiet but close to where all the action happens. 


Top three appliances you use in the morning? 

My phone, my rechargeable fan and my electric toothbrush 



We are creating a comic book about the superhero of the African music industry, describe your superpower as a music executive and tell us your superhero name

I would be a character that is quite aggressive and dogged. My super power would be keeping at a thing till I get the desired goal, regardless of who or what the obstacle is.  I can’t come up with a name so I’m open to suggestions …


What’s your favourite part of working at Chocolate City? 

Actualising the vision & seeing what we are working on coming to life. Seeing us grow from being a small label to now having an agency and putting together our publishing agency. Seeing the development with Candy Bleakz, executing the Love Nwantiti project, watching the growth with Blaq Bonez and Yung Jon. Seeing my colleagues develop their skills. Being a part of our bloom as a label is my favourite part of working with Chocolate City. 


What is something that occurs regularly in the Nigerian music industry that needs to stop and why?  

We need to share more, there’s space for everyone. People act like if they share you will take their quota but I think it makes the industry as a whole bigger, better and makes people want to invest in it. I also think there needs to be a policy regulating the number of shares international companies and labels can have when there is a partnership with local labels and companies so we don’t have a case where our sound recording is being exported out and not owned by Nigerians.


Can you please tell us in no particular order your top 5 Women in the African Music industry?

Titi Adesanya, Rima at Mavin, Deola Art Alade(in the event space), Candy Bleakz, & Yemi Alade.


Tell us about your must recent project for women in the Music Business?

Nahla (my baby). It started during the pandemic in 2021, and its first program was put together in 2022. Our focus is building more female producers, songwriters and engineers between the ages of 18-35, to increase female representation in the space, create safer spaces for women that may have experienced abuse working with men and increase the diversity of creative experience produced in the industry. At the heart of our work is showing women that it is possible to have a successful career in the music industry.


As a music Executive what top three things should a songwriter do to be more visible? 

  • Short videos of yourself on IG (promoting what your do) 
  • Posting videos of what you’ve done in the past 
  • Pitching yourself using an electronic press kit.

What is the role of Record Labels in the development of the African Music Industry and how can they foster more growth within the industry?

The role of a record label should be development, there is something about the framework of a record label that helps artists to be guided. The record label is to protect the artist and monetise the content being created. It’s the role of the label to educate the artist on what they are signing and then create platforms for the artist to make money and live well. Nigerian Record Labels do not need to embody the framework of international labels that can be slightly capitalist in nature, they can create new frameworks, which is something Chocolate city has and still does. 

Your name is going in the hall of fame for people who impacted the music industry, what would your quote be? 

“It is possible for you to exist and impact”


Quick Questions with Itty Okim

– Oibiee

We are creating a comic book about the superhero’s of the African music industry, what’s your superhero power and name?

My super hero name is Deitty, I read minds, how about you? 

Top three brands you wear?

I don’t like brand names, truth is I have a stylist who makes my clothes but top three would be Raven wears , Urban centre, Urban twist . The summary, I’m really into street wear.


From Pharmacist to Managing Editor at Digimillennials, what was the journey like? 

I was always keen on the media space because my father is a journalist, I grew up in an environment that supported journalism, especially entertainment.

Being a writer is really just me responding to what the environment has given me.

– Itty

How is it working at DigiMillennials and what’s the vision you are curating about the African Music Space?

 Digimillenials is awesome, the most interesting thing about working here is that majority of the team are people under 24, young fresh really talented minds, telling stories about African entertainment but in the light of Canadians, in Canada afro beats is not as big as it is in USA and England, so Digimillenials is trying to shed light on the Africans in Canada doing Afrocentric entertainment and showcase whats happening in Africa to the africans in Diaspora, especially in Canada. We really want to be part of the growth of Afrobeats, African Music Culture in Canada and the world. 


What is the role of writers and editors in shaping the Narrative of the African Music Scene? 

African music is getting a lot of global recognition and people are scared that we might lose the narrative of the art from Africa, and thats where writers come in, we control what the world sees and hears about African music, we control the narrative and stories, even though we are not gate keeping the sound  we are letting people know what is true about African music, editors and writers are at the fore of this. 

Writers and editors control what the world sees and hears about African music, we control the narrative and stories.

Can you tell us the type of content we need to see more off to grow the African Music Space? 

We have the art on lock but we need the creators owning their stories and sharing their journeys even more. It seems like African artists are basking in present glories and not being futuristic in their thinking about how to secure the future of the sound. 


What collaborations do you think we need to see in the African Music Space?

More of the music and fashion collaboration that is focused on home grown talent.


Can you tell us about any writing camps, programs, communities or initiatives that aspiring African entertainment writers can pug into? 

Not sure they exist, but watch my space because something is coming. 


Tell us about Bae’s Gist! How did it start, what strategy did you use to grow it? And where is it going? 

Bae Gist started as my friends and I talking about how people were always coming to us for relationship advice especially Gen Z`s. Our strategy has been leveraging the power of videos for marketing and now we are #1 relationship podcast in the country. For the future, expect live shows, merch, and more


Podcasts help us own our stories, our talk and our journeys, Podcast is as important as all other forms of media 

Itty Okim

What are some of your favourite innovations and programs by Africans for the music industry?

The Sarz academy, DIY Collective a new one but a very important one


Your name is going in the hall of fame for people who impacted the music industry, what would your quote be? 

Do you mehn!

Because people like to act like there’s a template for being relevant but there really is none, it’s really about finding how much value you can give and giving it to the people who deserve it & showing up, because consistency is the major thing in the music business. 


Psst! Cool Stuff: 7 African Songs You Should Listen To

-Sharon

Psssst! Yes, you! Hi Wesoko family! Isn’t it crazy how the first half of 2022 is almost over, where’s this year even speeding to? It’s hard not to get overwhelmed by the noise. In times like this, if there’s one thing to be grateful for, it’s the music, really. 

With a quick trip around the continent, not only have we selected some of the coolest songs to listen to, but enjoyable bops to hold you through the craziness. Shall we begin?

Continue reading “Psst! Cool Stuff: 7 African Songs You Should Listen To”