Archive | March, 2014

Africa’s Musical Compass and the Bard with the electric sense of rhythm. (The Double Review- Da Suspect and DJ EDU)

26 Mar

No matter what tribe, country or ethnic nation one represents, one thing brings us all together. Something beautiful, effortless and filled with energy. Something that occupies the heart and mind of every human, is alive in itself and can bring life into even the darkest of places. This is music. (Thinking of breaking into the ode to music I always sing alone, but this is too much fun.)

When two of the best people in their fields come together to bring us anything even if it were but a cup of water, we wait in anticipation of what they will bring forth.


For David Peter, born in Ikeja, Lagos and becoming every Allen-Opebi raised human’s inspiration(keeping a sisteh in touch with her roots and all that stuff) who as co-owner, artiste and sound engineer at Capital Hill Music has brought to the fore the skills of many of Nigeria and Africa’s most promising stars including KEL, (Wa wa alright), Teeto Cee (Oshamo) and more recently with tracks like I no send you (Emces including M.I, Naeto C, Vector and Femcees including Eva, Zee, Muna and Sasha among others), his production and feature on Sasha’s female power tune recognise, as well as his didactic hits like Subsidy matter, you dey mad, Gbogbo Hustling and my personal favourite, Malaysia, has effortlessly churned out banging tunes with a message every time, this track shows us indeed why we can be rest assured listening to it that he will be here for a lot longer.

But before I go into the track review I need to welcome Kenyan DJ extraordinaire and BBC 1Xtra DJ, DJ EDU to the fold.  He is a king in his own right. Long before I started this journey, I would listen to his Afro-beat show online as an African teenager homesick and  hungry for African music and feel refreshed. Someday I would be able to thank him for this gift of GBEDU I always said. Now I can. He was born and raised in Nairobi, Kenya he began his career as a presenter on Capital FM.

He is an African Music Awards and Best African Radio DJ awards winner whom after being voted the Best Kenyan DJ in the UK in 2004 sought to fulfill his life-long ambition to put the latest and greatest sounds produced by Africa’s new generation on the global map.

Fast-Forward to right now and about seven years have passed since his amazing mix show Destination Africa began to instill love of African music into people from around the world who would have had many misconceptions about what to expect from music of African extraction. DJ Edu has played in Kenya, Ethiopia, South Africa, Tanzania, Ghana, France, Greece, Germany, Switzerland and has been able to break some of the biggest names on the global African music scene in the UK – artists such as K’Naan, Nneka, D’banj, Casttro,Atumpan, Kaz, Dr Sid,Ahmed Soultan, Kas,Hip Hop Pantsula, J Martins,Wande Coal,Zaki Ibrahim, M.I, P Unit, Jesse Jagz, Brymo, Ice Prince, Guru, Tiffany Asa, Nalu, Exile,2face, Amani, Cynthia Mare, Kleptomaniax, Ulopa, Stella Mwangi,Darey, Wyre, M3nsa, Wanlov The Kubolor, Winky D, Bkay & Kazz are a few other names from an impressive, long list known to have guested on DNA.

Now you see why a king will sing the praise of another king. The Gbedu that EDU brings is hot. Very hot.

So the song is saying everything I have said here. DESTINATION AFRICA is a great show, Edu is awesome, The (gb)EDU he brings is fit for UKWU movement. So we all must Jirate and stop all the formings!!!

And to top it all, the beat is a unifying African dance set, set against the backdrop of a presumably western synth melody painting the picture of the universality of music. With music we are all one. So with EDU we will discover the world in Africa by the migration of our ears and minds.

Great message, no?! The video is just perfect. I cannot even shout! I shall say three things only about the video.

Suspect’s mustache and his expressions- Epic Comedy! 😀

Ukwu movement- Apt. 🙂

Clarence’s shots of Edu- Oh la la.


Now… I shall consider diversifying as a musician. Why? Tha Suspect makes the most electrifying beats I have ever moved to. #Boloma.

Here is the video


Oh and you know what sounds similar to Boloma in Swahili?

Ngoma- DANCE!!!

(Asanteni Edu.)

Get up and move people!







31 Records Presents: Temisan, Joromi. (Audio)

21 Mar


Cast your mind back to the amazing indie video for the above mentioned track directed by MEX of PXC media and you will recall that this is one video that has kept the track on the minds of all who have seen it. From the clarity of storyline to the minimal use of props and characters, the video showed us the  depth of a love that may never be returned but still exists and shall not rest until the object of this love is one with the music and the lover, in a dance.

If like many an avid music lover, you have continually hummed the tune and resorted to looking for the Joromi video, Temisan has gift for you-and I, the audio download.

We shall no longer need to rely solely on the video. With the audio we can now paint our own picture of love, longing and dance.




The time bomb of Uber-Amazingness known as Zara Gretti! Everything you ever wondered about and a little more.

14 Mar

Hello everyone! I haven’t forgotten about you all. I have just had a lot of amazing things that I have been up to of late that I shall share with you in due course.

Now though, I have one of the only interviews in print which Zara Gretti gave when even I was but a baby in this writing something.-She had only just become Zara Gretti formally after granting this interview. She, in her own amazing way, inspires me. You will see why when you are done with the read.

Enjoy. I have no doubt that she will inspire you too.



Interview with ZARA (Gretti.)

 da_sweetthin for Jorie Magazine 2011: Good afternoon Zara. It is a pleasure to be granted this interview with you today.

**Hi Jorie! I’m majorly excited to be speaking and sharing today.

Would you tell us your full names and the reason you chose Zara as a stage name?

**Margaret-Mary Oluwatoyin Ejiroghene Joseph. Long isn’t it? I held back many names! Lol. I adopted Zara years ago after I moved out of Nigeria without having an opportunity to bid my dear friend Zara Mustapha farewell. It was done in hopes of finding her again.  Somehow the name stuck and many referred to me as Zara. It only made sense to use that on stage. I have added a second name to the package; please refer to me as Zara Gretti. J

da_sweetthin: Tell us about yourself- family, childhood, interests, (musically and otherwise), Career flare at the time, Uni, course choice etc.

**Nigerians all like to have a hand in raising a child, especially the first born.  I was born into cultural, ethnic and religiously diverse families (If you couldn’t tell from my ten-some names), so I was raised by many and exposed to various ways of life. I believe this has contributed to my free spirited and open minded nature.  I’ve always been a music lover especially where dance is involved.  I used to dance so much it looked like my family took me to events and parties to make money.  I don’t think I was ever a shy kid. Lol. I sang in various choirs growing up and through university, but I left the controlled singing to focus on theatre, dancing and fashion shows. I guess this encouraged my love for the stage.  I feel so alive when I perform. It’s like I’m in my world and my audience members are my guests. I was focused in school while involving myself in several extracurricular activities and juggling a part-time job. I successfully graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with two Bachelors: 1 in Administration of Justice and 1 in Africana studies. 

da_sweetthin: Prior to your Smash Hits Flyest and Aboko Ku what was music like for you before the world began to see the star?

**I’m a patient person and I believe things happen at the right time with the right push and the right talent. Yes… lots of “rights” in there. I won’t say the world has begun to see the star yet, I’d say a piece of the world is watching me grow and mature into the act I’m becoming. And then boom! The world will see the star because He who lives in me is going to reveal major things. So “before the world began to see the star” as you put it, a smaller piece of the world was watching and helping me grow.  Professional music wasn’t something I ever thought I’d pursue and I recorded playfully. I was nudged into persevering by my friends Eldee the Don and Keno Kennett. 

Dj Dee Money gave me the first real public exposure and everyone saw the star in me that I couldn’t see. It’s been such a heart tugging ride since.  The roads are not all smooth and wide but I’m still on the ride.

da_sweetthin: It has been said by many of the spectators and even many talented people who choose to appreciate rather than plough the industry that the Music industry in general; is one filled with cliché and rivalry and for females you have to look a certain way. How would you respond to that bearing in mind that you have successfully proven the opposite musically and otherwise?

**The more financially successful popular female acts in the Western world have looked a certain way… and been a certain size so they could show off their bodies to attract and maintain a fan base.  Many say I’m not doing as well as I should because I’m not another lean girl with huge extensions flowing down her back. Mind you I used to be a skinny girl, so I don’t throw “what if’s” around.  I am a bit sad that finding the right size in clothing items has to be such a hassle but I’m definitely confident in my skin. I also LOVE my hair.  I’m not biased against myself based on my looks because I do love what I look like right now just like I loved my looks when I was smaller and had relaxed hair.  It doesn’t mean I’ll never go down that route again, but the most important factor is in how you feel and it translates into how people perceive you. Love yourself first, and their love will find you.

da_sweetthin: How would you describe your music?

** I don’t subscribe to genres when describing my music because I don’t like to box myself, but I’m definitely pushing for some sort of popular music. Lol. I deliver in rap; I sing and do a bit of Jamaican style dj’ing called “patois”. I infuse a lot of pidgin English and Yoruba into my music as a Lagos babe nah! The world should know where I’m from innit? lol

da_sweetthin: What musicians/bands have influenced your personal style?

**I’m a sucker for women who do big things and take musical risks. They inspire me. Madonna, Gwen Stefani, Mariam Makeba, Onyeka Onwenu, Lauryn Hill and Missy Elliot all inspire me.  

Now in regards to my personal style, I won’t say any bands/artistes per se have influenced me. I’ll say genres have (the irony!)… Jamaican dancehall, “Naija pop music” and sounds… I’ve always loved unique sounds and instruments, they get me musically excited.

da_sweetthin: The Nigerian music industry is dominant in cyberspace at the moment is this a step forward?

**Yes yes yes! We give out so much free music on the internet it helps our fan base grow and introduces us to other parts of the country AND the world. Our presence is starting to get felt and we are now seen for positivity and not just yahoo yahoo! I’d like to see that translate into a financial benefit for the music makers though.

da_sweetthin:  I’ve asked this before (laughs) but for our readers who would be curious I’ll ask it…who are your dream collaborators for the near future?

**Femi Kuti, Asa, Onyeka Onwenu, King Sunny Ade, Munga, DeMarco.. oh yeah, M.I.

da_sweetthin: Your track Aboko Ku talks about undying love, what’s your take on Love, Relationships, Abstinence and HIV?

**We all need love to survive in this world. I’ll touch on some areas I think are very important. There’s the love of God, you love Him and feel His presence in your life with the effects of His love.  Then there’s love of self: extra important because this is the only way you’ll believe anyone else has a reason to love you. Love for family and true friends because you all support each other. And then the final one is a shared love between yourself and a partner. Many get into relationships for various reasons but we all hope that we meet that person who loves us and can deal with us till forever comes, and vice versa. Some are lucky and meet that person from jump, while others try over and over again before they are able to find true love.  I can’t define what love is for anyone, but as long as both parties trust and care about each other, work together as a unit and tackle their battles together; thing’s will fall in place. Abstinence is a smart move but if you are sexually active, protecting yourself and the people you are involved with is the way to go. I’m a strong believer in condoms if one isn’t abstaining fromsex to protect against HIV, STDs and unplanned pregnancies.  If you do have a partner, please respect your body and theirs and stay away from being sexually involved with other people because diseases can seriously alter people’s lives.  On another note, I shall digress a little. Please be careful and find out the health status of those you date and want to be in a serious relationship with especially where sex is involved.  If you do find out someone has any kind of STD, it is up to you to decide whether or not you want to be in a serious relationship with the person. If you do decide to be with the person and be sexually involved, PLEASE talk to a doctor and protect yourself. Nobody knows tomorrow.

da_sweetthin: What’s Zara’s plan as a brand in the next 5 years? And personally?

**If i told you my plan as a brand someone might take it nah! Lol. Really though, it is to become an intercontinental force and then work my way to international acclaim. Pray for me and wish me well. Now honestly, I neglect my personal life a lot. Please ask me that question later because my life as Zara is my current personal life. lol

da_sweetthin: What advice would you anyone with a creative dream or any dream whatsoever?

**Place God first, have plans, channel your resources, persevere, work hard, and wait to reap the fruit of your labor. Good luck!

da_sweetthin: Thank you so much for your time and hope to do another interview with you in the future.

**It’s been wonderful sharing with you! Thank you oh so much! Follow me on twitter – @zwagger, (Now @ZaraGretti) or find me on

Interview by Nathalie Wemambu. (@da_sweetthhin)

10 things about Zara you don’t know…

I used to bite my toe nails when I was little and can still bite my toe nails if I want

I don’t like to shave… I do veet. 

I cook great mei-fun (Singapore rice noodles) and Asian-inspired fried rice… yeah, i cook.

I loveeeee seafood… shrimp, crabs, scallops, fish, squid… I think that’s it!

I wear American size 10/11 shoes.

da_sweetthin says:

*** My favourite tracks of hers of late have got to be Teno and Yeah ft Dokta Frabs. New stuff are coming. And we hear bigfoot’s

“foot print” is on one or more. We wait.

ILVIDonLa (Il Vit Dans La) is her mgmt as we speak. She is bigger than MS. She is #Winning. And we Love her.

Get her back on the airwaves faster.

Click here—>>>

She loves you.

I love you too,