Interviews

Charles Granville takes gospel music to new level

CHARLES GRANVILLE

Charles Granville, one of Nigeria’s leading vocalists is set for a new challenge with his music. He has just dropped a new hit track, Titilailai which is now one of the most preferred Gospel songs.

The award winning musician said in this chat with ENCOMIUM Weekly he has not deviated from his core style of music, only that he wanted to do something different for his teeming fans. Charles who hails from Rivers state also talked about his present relationship status.

Briefly tell us about your latest single, Titilailai?

Titilailai is something different from what my fans know me for. I have always wanted to show how versatile I am. This new single is more like a dancehall, it’s the kind of music that is trending now. I want to give my fans something different, a great song that is relevant today.

Are you not deviating from your core style of music?

Not at all. Music, no matter the genre, ministers to the soul. I am still a minister of God and I can do that with worship and sometimes with praise. Titilailai is a fast praise song, the tempo is high, I am not deviating from what I am known for. I believe in quality for God and for my fans.

Are you doing music for commercial or otherwise?

Music, for me is a gift from God. My life is not what it seems to be 10 years ago. Everything I have I owe it all to God. It is a covenant I have with God that I will use everything He has given me to praise Him. I feel I am blessed to be able to share with others.

How did music start for you?

From the church, I have a heritage of musicians in my family. Generations before me were into music. I got discovered in the church by my pastor. I joined the choir, from there I became provincial music director for Bayelsa and Rivers states of the Redeemed Christian Church of God. I groomed myself in the church. I was in charge of large choirs from two states. I train a lot of people and I travel a lot.

Are you still part of your foundation?

Yes, I am still there. Sometimes we don’t need to blame artistes for dumping where they are coming from. Once they develop wings they fly. I won’t blame them, pastors should train backups. If one person is not available someone else should be able to take over. They should not be afraid to lose their talents in church by laying down strict regulations that would not allow artistes to grow. Most of my colleagues singing secular music started from the church. Why did they leave? It is because the ground is not too fertile for them to grow. The church needs to support artistes, that is just my own opinion.

Do you consider being a gospel artiste a pressure on you to abstain from clubbing or doing what ordinarily a secular artiste would do?

Christianity is personal. Yes, I am a role model and I have to live a certain lifestyle. However, no matter what you do there will be negative comments about you. We are not perfect. Jesus started from the street. Just live your life as you can and leave the rest. Don’t pretend; never judge anybody because Jesus never condemned anybody. Of course, I am under pressure to live a particular lifestyle, you may not find me in nightclubs. I have been invited to a programme in a club and you can only reach out to people in these places.

What inspires your creativity?

Nature, God. I am always happy to see good things happening to good people. Good things inspire me to want to write a song. If I am alone I begin to sing, I also sing for soundtracks. So, if I get a request to do that, I think of how to go about it.

Which movies have you composed soundtracks for?

The latest one is When Dreams Fall Apart by Chico Ejiro. It is showing at the cinemas. I still have other movies I want to compose a soundtrack for.

Your name appears foreign, where are you from?

I am from Abonnema, Kalabari Kingdom in Rivers State, I read Electrical Engineering in school. I practised for sometime before I ventured into music.

What other things fetch you money?

My regular job, acting, movie soundtrack composition and general entertainment.

What is your relationship status?

Still single.

So, what is delaying you?

My fiancee is pursuing her masters in the UK. We have an agreement that as soon as she finishes, she would come back and we begin from where we stopped. It is not like I am delayed, I already know where I am going. I should be worried by now if I don’t have a prospect. Money is not the reason I am not married yet.

 -FOLUSO SAMUEL

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