-Launches music talent hunt
Talented artiste, Dapo Oyebanjo, popularly known as D’Banj, is set to give back to the industry that made him through a talent hunt reality show called Creative, Reality, Entertainment Art and Music (CREAM).
His partnership with telecommunication giant, MTN and Bank Of Industry (BOI) made this huge feat possible.
ENCOMIUM Weekly had a chat with him about this initiative and sundry issues…
What has been happening to D’Banj music wise, what should we expect from your stable?
I cannot give my music for free. We have to think of the business side of my work. MTN generated $70 million from music distribution. I needed a platform like that to monetize my music, that’s why I waited a bit to launch CREAM. First, I released a single titled Emergency, this year and it was a great hit. I never met the producer of the song. He did a beat and gave it to somebody that knew somebody and it got to me. I have my album ready. In a couple of weeks, two singles would be out. I have a single featuring Phyno, it is entitled Egwueji and another featuring a popular DJ in South Africa, Skido.
On the music side, now we have launched CREAM, you will hear my songs. The most important thing is having a platform where money will be coming out. It is not just for m but for the whole industry. We are not releasing music to be on YouTube, we are not releasing music because we are popular. We are releasing music to put money in our pockets.
What should we expect from your album, strictly afrobeat or new sound?
I don’t even do afrobeat, I do afropop. If you listen to Oliver Twist very well, it is not afrobeat. If you remove the voice from the beat, the sound can pass for pop. I don’t like people boxing me to a corner.
Emergency has a feel of afrobeat but it’s afropop. The forthcoming album would have series of beats. I’ve said I am not a rapper, I am not singer, but an entertainer. I promise to continue to entertain.
Why the choice of MTN and not Glo for the CREAM initiative?
D’Banj was an ambassador for Glo. I was there for two years. My contract with Glo expired November 2015. I am very cool with Glo. The reason I went to MTN is simple. If you look at the creative industry, MTN is a pacesetter. They have the platform that is working. I am generating money from Music Plus. Though I was a Glo ambassador, I was always generating content across all networks. MTN has the biggest distribution that has showed success in music. That is why they said they made $70 million from music distribution alone.
My partnership with MTN secures me at the moment. I am not saying that it wouldn’t expand to every other person in the future.
It seems Dapo is more conscious of the business aspect of his brand, D’Banj now?
I cannot separate D’Banj from Dapo. From day one, I have told people that I am a businessman. Dapo Oyebanjo is the businessman while D’Banj will always perform on stage.
What is the truth about the marriage rumour?
It is my business. It is none of your business whether I am married or not.
Will D’Banj ever wear a wedding band?
If you ever see a wedding band on my finger fine, if you don’t fine. The truth about it is that it is very important to know what you want as a brand. I want to focus on the business side and keep my family and private life private, especially coming from where I came from I know how it is. Let’s us concentrate on CREAM.
Tell us about your talent hunt show, CREAM?
About a month ago, I launched CREAM on my instagram page. I wrote *463# and I launched CREAM. It stands for Creative, Reality, Entertainment Art and Music. It is an acronym for the creative industry. It started when I was appointed an ambassador for Bank Of Industry on Creative. After realizing that they have earmarked a budget for the industry, we needed to create a platform to maximize the money.
CREAM will help the creative industry achieve its aim. It is a platform that will help the youth harness their talents, even if the person is not in Lagos, CREAM works with the mobile phones. We have secured our license, a lottery license so that CREAM can work.
CREAM is for people who want to record a standard song, shoot videos, collaborate with artistes of their choice, talent showcase, talent branding, promotion and marketing show business. It is available for all new and existing prepaid customers of MTN. Once they dial *463#, then click on their creative category, there would be monthly raffle draws and ten winners would emerge. CREAM would invest in the winners and ensure their dreams come true.
There are five categories on the platform. Over N500,000 subscribers have subscribed for CREAM. Subscription is just N20 daily. It can be done daily as many times as possible.