AFTER a successful 2014, with a winning streak of five awards, including the All Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA) for Best Female Artiste in African Inspirational Music, the talented singer, Nikki Laoye has kicked off the New Year on a celebratory note with the release of her sophomore album, 123 Project (Deluxe Edition) on Saturday, January 10, 2015, at FAB Lounge, Oduduwa Way, GRA, Ikeja, Lagos.
In an interview with ENCOMIUM Weekly, the gospel singer opened up on her joy of the latest award, album launch, her plans and more.
I cannot do anything but to thank God for everything. It feels great because artistes want to be recognized and I thank AFRIMA for giving me that recognition as well as my fans for voting for me.
Were you expecting the award?
I had an open mind and prayed I should win. Besides, it was not a Nigerian award but I still had an open mind because the other artistes who we were nominated for the same category were also very good but I felt excited when my name was announced.
What do you think stood you out?
Voting took a big part but I feel they also checked the originality and the technicality of the song. What stood me out is the uniqueness of the song.
Who do you dedicate the award to?
I dedicate this award to God and my King who stood by me all the year. Even when I lost my father, He stood by me. I also dedicate it to my late father who I know is smiling down at me and blessing me because I sang the song, Only You when I lost my father. So, he is making sure the song wins as much awards as it can. This same song also got me an award at Nigeria Music Video Awards (NMVA), Crystal Awards and a Special Recognition Humanitarian Award. So, I am grateful. I am also dedicating it to my mother, husband, my management and my fans for standing by me.
You officially launched your sophomore album, 123 Project Deluxe Edition. How do you feel?
I feel so excited and fulfilled because this is my second album after seven years. The album, 123 Project is a collection of all my songs from present and past years. The album also contains three chapters. Chapter One is about God, Chapter Two about love and the third chapter is about life. I did the album because these are the things I know I cannot do without.
What were the challenges in ensuring that the album is a success?
I would say it was not easy because I am a perfectionist. I worry about each content of the song from the song writing to its production and compilation as well because I want to make sure that there is no mistake in any of them. Also, trying to get my brand across borders has been a major challenge for me but I thank God.
Do you think it will be a success and why?
Yes, because anything I lay hands or set my mind to do always comes out great and fruitful.
What inspired the new single, African Dance?
The song African Dance was written and produced by my brother, Xblaze. He is a good producer and we have done a couple of songs together. The song is a mash-up of all African dance steps both in the song and the video. In the video, we made use of all African dances and costumes. What gave me the major inspiration is that, I wanted to do a song that would not only promote the African culture but would also be celebrating the culture as well.
Aside Xblaze, who else did you feature in any of your songs?
I featured a couple of artistes which makes me happy having all of them on my album. I featured the likes of DJ Jimmy Jatt, Niyola in the song, Thank You, Jeremiah Gyang. In my version of Chris Brown’s Loyal featuring Fresh B, Sokleva of the Rooftop MCs, Base One and many more.
When will Nikki Laoye start a family?
We cannot dictate to God on when or how to fulfill His promises to mankind. It takes patience and endurance to do so. The plan of starting a family is between me and my husband and we are working towards that. All the same, I look up to God.
Do you see Nikki relocating to Abuja because of your husband?
There is no need of me relocating to Abuja anymore because my husband has relocated to Lagos. He works in Lagos now, so I am happy about that.
How does he cope with your busy schedules?
I am blessed to have an understanding man by my side and at the same time, my husband is also in my management team and we attend to a lot of my business together.