BY GODSWILL ODEKU
HER name may not ring a bell, but Ekwutosi (Ekwy) Daniella Alinta is gradually stepping into the music industry with her recently released single, Ashawo.
The single is already making waves in the eastern part of the country.
Performed with the group, First Base, the track is laced with goods lyrics and melody.
Born 25 years ago, as second child and only girl to the late Esom Alintah, former Secretary General of African Business Roundtable (ABR) and a Camerounian mother, her initial plan was to pursue a career in either Medicine or Law, but she ended up studying Media Productions at the American Intercontinental University, London.
“When I was younger, I wanted to be a doctor. I just wanted to help people from my impressionable age; not myself but other people because there are always less privileged people out there. On the other hand, I wanted to follow my mum’s footstep and become a lawyer, reach out to people and do amazing things,” she says.
All that changed when Ekwy, as she’s fondly called in the industry, finished her studies at the Gordonstoun High School, UK.
“I discovered I just wanted to do something in the entertainment industry; I wanted to reach out to people but in a completely different way,” she enthuses.
She saw herself drifting into more of entertainment. During her high school days in the UK, she even had a stint in ballet and later moved to dance proper, where she participated in dance festivals in the UK.
“I wasn’t necessarily a hero, but it was the only thing I wanted to do. I don’t like seeing people in pains, so, I thought that, though I want to help people, I wouldn’t be able to separate my actual life from my work.”
A LOVER of R&B, jazz, rap and rock music, Ekwy says her songs are not all local genres. “It’s a mixture. I do a fusion of different genres of music because I like a lot of them, so, I can’t really say my songs are purely Nigerian. I love hip-hop; oldies and I have a rock song in my collection. But I particularly like my single because it represents my country and I’m very proud to be here.”
On the challenges of pursuing her passion, the returnee artiste says, “the fact that my father is no longer around to support me is a major challenge. I’m so sure he would have been proud of what I’m doing. However, every moment, the turnout of events prove to me that I can do this, not just proving to people.”
EKWY is in the group of Nigerians, who are excited at the developments in the country’s entertainment industry. She, however, appeals to government to create more enabling environment for players.
“It’s absolutely fantastic now; more young ones are doing something positive with their lives. I think it’s a good development that needs to be encouraged. I believe that if these young ones are supported, they will end up becoming successful, not just to themselves, but also to the nation at large.”
To fellow upcoming acts, she says, “no matter what happens, just keep being you; keep believing in yourself, praying that everything would work out. I don’t believe because something negative happened, then you must change; you need to start seeing the world in a different way.”
WHILE not using her music to pursue any agenda, Ekwy called on the society to rise against inhuman practices against women, especially widows. She recalls what happened after her father’s demise. “Everything we had were taken away from us when my father died. I couldn’t believe that when a person dies, instead of thinking of how to bury him and take care of the people he left behind, the first thing they think of is how to mess up his name and take away what does not belong to them. I really can’t believe such things still happen in this era.”
One-on-one with Collabo Master
BORN Adebayo Durojaiye Samuel, as the last in a family of three, Deebee, as he’s popularly called, launched into the industry with Collabo. The artiste, who is currently working on his new album, speaks to TOYIN KOMOLAFE on his life as a musician.
How did you get into music?
I started when I was young. In fact, music, for me, actually started from the church to the street. In all, God has always been my inspiration.
I never saw it coming, I just believe this is my time. So, let me shine.
I like some artistes but I don’t have a role model. I don’t imitate anybody; I sound like myself. However, I like D’banj and 9ice; I like their kind of music.
Challenges so far?
Going to radio stations is really a big challenge to me, but I think we are really doing fine now. Piracy is another major problem musicians face in the country. But… all the same, we are trying to make ends meet.
How do you cope with your female fans?
I am a friendly and cool type, though with crazy songs. I handle my female fans with maturity. There has not been any embarrassing moment from any of them for now.
What are you working on right now?
Be expecting something tighter than Collabo. Get Down is surely going to hit the market soon.
Message to your fans
I love you all. Keep buying my songs; so that money will continue rolling in. To up-coming artistes, like I said, time is turn by turn. Keep working and one-day, your time will surely come.
Onos serves Keep Moving
After months of fine-tuning her songs day and night in the studio, gospel artiste, Onos Bikawei, will today launch her debut album, Keep Moving. Billed to hold at the Grand Ball Room, Eko Hotel & Suite, Victoria Island, Lagos, the event, which kicks off at 3.30pm, will be anchored by the duo of Steve Onu (Yaw of Wazobia FM) and Mc Abbey.
Aside from Onos who will be performing some of her songs live on stage, the evening, which will begin with a special red carpet reception/cocktail, will also feature special appearances by some artistes such as Timi Dakolo and Eric (both of Idol West Africa), Efe, Jay lyricist and others.
“I’m happy that at lat, we are coming up with album. But the most important thing is that the product is worth the efforts. I thank all the people that worked on this album and also my fans that have waited so long for this album to come. Keep Moving is finally here,” she said.
Meanwhile, some of the tracks in the album, such as Dance, are already on air in most radio and TV stations across the country.
D’Banj bags title in Abia State
Few weeks after he was decorated as the Are Makun of Shagamu, Ogun State, Koko Master, D’Banj, added another feather to his cap last weekend when he was conferred with Chief Oluoma 1 of Abayi Amaugwu, an autonomous community in Osisioma Ngwa L.G.A, Abia State.
According to a close source, receiving the title was never part of D’Banj’s plan when he jetted into the state for a Valentines gig.
“We just went for a Valentines’ show in Abia last weekend, there was no plan for a chieftaincy title. He was surprised himself,” the source revealed.
But to show his full acceptance of the title, D’Banj posted on his Twitter page the following Monday:
“Oluoma 1 of Abayi Amaugwu autonomous community in Abia state. New feather added to my cap. Igbo Kwenu!”
Between Kel and Capital Hill Record
Don’t be surprised if you wake up one day and hear that rapper Kel, dumped Capital Hill Records, a platform with which she launched into the industry. According to rumours making the rounds, the relationship between Kel and the record label seems to have hit brick walls.
Reports coming from both camps have it that the rapper whose debut album, The Investment, was released just last year, is about putting an end to her relationship with the label; a deal that is supposed to elapse by March 2011. Kel wants to leave immediately, but the label insists that the fast rising rapper must settle her debt before leaving.
“We produced her album, shot her videos and have promoted her ever since. She owes the label about N10 million and we have communicated this to her. We have also withdrawn her videos from TV as we cannot continue to promote her when she doesn’t want to be with us anymore,” the label claimed.
Stand Up Nigeria Valentine’s special
Afrotainment Productions organiser of the monthly comedy show, Stand Up Nigeria, has revealed plans to stage the Valentine’s Day edition of the show this month.
Scheduled for February 27, at the MUSON Centre, Onikan, Lagos, the show will be hosted by comedian Lapacious Bose, making her the second female comedian to anchor the show (after Princess) noted for parading frontline comedians.
As a way of shearing love, guests stand the chance of buying one ticket and getting another free when purchasing before the event.
“Since this is the month of love, we’ve decided to give lovers the opportunity to have a fun filled show by giving out extra ticket. The project was initiated a year ago with the aim of showcasing Nigerian comedy talents as well as celebrate Nigerians, who have made significant impact in their chosen fields,” the producer of the show, Bunmi Davies said.
The list Nigerians celebrated on the Stand Up Nigeria comedy stage include Stella Damasus, Lagbaja, Julius Agwu, Jimmy Jatt, Joke Silva, Amaka Igwe, Femi Sowoolu,