Nigerian Singer, Timi Dakolo, sits with the host of the viral show #WithChude, Chude Jideonwo, to discuss why he stuck to his sound, sticking with his wife when she decided to share her abuse story, dealing with the loss of his grandmother, and his decision to go study in Berkeley School of Music.
Timi shared about the heartwarming relationship he had with his grandmother and how she pushed him to be studious. Speaking on her passing a few days before he won the Idol, ‘It felt like she died at the wrong time. I didn’t tell my family about the competition because if you fail at a thing and they laugh at you, you can feel dead. They asked me what I was doing in Lagos, I told them I was doing something and they said told me, ‘Mama has died o’. It was during an interview, so I just had to go outside. They asked me what happened, I told them my grandma had died, and I was not interested in the competition again. They said, ‘no, you can’t say that. People love you on the show’. I insisted because I believed that if I had been there, I would have known that something was wrong. I think they had to put the show on hold for a week. What prepared me to know that my grandma wasn’t going to be here for long was that she started calling me by my father’s name. Speaking on what she missed the most about her, “It is the calmness in her counsels. She just says things out of nowhere. Not like you are doing something at the moment, and she gives you advice. She just gives the counsel”. It was the week that I missed my lyrics, because I thought she probably would have been calling my name and I didn’t hear. I felt bad.”
He shares on sticking to his sound in a fast-paced music industry like what Nigeria has, “People have given me plenty good-bad advice. It is what you interpret music as that is what music is to you. The Jamaican man does not think that Fuji is a music, while that boy in Ogbomoso, if it is not fuji, it is not music. For me, music tells my truth. At the beginning of my writing, I wrote that my whole job is to create an experience. I want to hold you captive, then when I am done, you will think about what I have said. I am not going to sing for singing sake. I have never been the guy to be in a hurry to do things, you can never force me to do anything, because I believe that music is soul language, it has nothing to do with age. There is no retiring from the arts. It is the artist that stops, the music never stops. Artists listen to everybody themselves; music is the expression of your emotions.”
Timi Dakolo also shared what made him so bold in standing behind his wife, Busola, saying, ‘My wife will tell her story’. “Truth is very powerful, bend it, mould it, crack it, drown it, truth is truth. And for the fact that, within the whispers of society, I’ll be hearing that, ‘this thing still dey happen o’. Make we no dey cover bad thing. If we do, we will be part of the problem. People said, ‘Ah, your life’ and I’d tell them, ‘Uncle, I’ve been shot before and I did not die, I don dey inside car, car tumble (I have been in a car accident), I be Port Harcourt boy, the day wey e go end, e go end (when the time for death comes, it will come). When you were saying for better for worse, this is the for worse part. Nobody envisions the for worse part of ‘for better, for worse’, so this was it. Like Busola had certain things I did not get at first. She doesn’t like someone just touching her from the back. She can go inside the room happy and come out angry. I was saying to her, ‘tell me these things. It was when she told me that I started putting two and two together. The burden did not leave my heart, it didn’t. They said, ‘they will fight you, I said, ‘trust me, I grew up in church’, I have seen it all. I used to create scenarios in my head on how everything could play out. I said, ‘see, leave social media, everybody go talk wetin them go talk’, but once you have said the truth. No matter how you try to hide the truth. You have said it, it will stay there, and it will be in the subconscious of human beings. And again, awareness is victory.”
“People were calling me, I kept telling them that they were not getting the message. I told them, just calm down, think of your daughter, and imagine if she told you this thing. They’d say, ‘No, it can’t be my daughter’. This is how it looks in the imagination, it can’t be your daughter, but it can be somebody’s child and it’s okay”, he added.
Watch the excerpt, here.