Entertainment, Interviews, Music

Saidi Osupa on why he acquired land for band members + ‘Being a Glo ambassador has changed my life’

KING of Music, Alhaji Saidi Akorede, better known as Osupa, has opened up on why he acquired land for his band members. He also spoke on his endorsement deal as Glo ambassador and much more when ENCOMIUM Weekly visited him at his Magodo, Lagos residence on Thursday, October 16, 2014…

 

What’s happening right now from the stable of King Saheed Osupa?

Really, there is nothing much. But at the moment, we’re embarking on few things to boost our image. Just about two months ago, I went to Cairo, Egypt. Also, I was on a trip to Malaysia about a month back and South Africa about three weeks back. All on musical tour. I was even supposed to be in the UK last week but due to one reason or the other, I couldn’t. So, these and few other steps I have taken in recent times to forge ahead in my career, and I thank God for that.

We learnt you have been working on your new album for more than a year, but it’s yet to see the light of the day. Why?

Yes, we’re supposed to have released the album, Tested and Trusted about a year ago. But the marketer, Afeezco said he wanted it to be 3-in-1 album, instead of the 2-in-1 we earlier planned. So, there had to be a slight modification in the title and everything. Now, it’s Tested, Trusted and Guaranteed, instead of Tested and Trusted. We have completed everything now, and by the special grace of God, it will be released in December, 2014.

How would you describe your recent musical tours, compared to the previous ones?

It was a fantastic and exciting experience. I would say it’s by far better than all the musical tours I had ever embarked upon. I enjoyed warm reception all over. I was so happy and excited about it. I give God the glory.

A lot of your fans have been expecting another hit that will throw jibes at your perceived rivals in the industry. But it seems you’re taking things easy this time around, why?

I don’t really need such things this time around. At times, you device another means of solving a particular problem as against the usual or expected way of doing something like that. Sometimes you need to apply diplomacy. You don’t really need to respond to everything everybody says about you.

saheed-osupaMeaning that everything now has come with more maturity?

(Cuts in) Yes, that’s what I am saying. Everything needs to come with maturity. Sometimes, you just say, ‘Let it go.’

Your performance at this year’s Ojude Oba in Ijebu Ode, Ogun State was a bang, according to those who witnessed it. Was that your first time of performing at the historic carnival?

I thank God for that but that wasn’t my first time of performing at Ojude Oba. I have been going there before but not on Globacom invitation. So, that will be the first time of performing at Ojude Oba as Glo ambassador.

How would you describe the experience?

It was a very nice and wonderful one. I was in South Africa then but Baba (Mike Adenuga) said they should just call me, that he wanted me to perform there. I came back from South Africa that same day. I went straight to Ijebu Ode from the airport.

Since you became Glo ambassador, you have not spoken about it. How would you describe being one of the new ambassadors of the company?

How do I put it? Let me say I really appreciate those who also appreciate me because if they don’t appreciate you, you won’t be named an ambassador of that brand. Even if you have all the qualities or criteria required, that does not mean you will be appointed. But they will only pick you if they have special interest in you. So, I thank God for the recognition.

Would you say being a Glo ambassador has changed your life and career?

It has.

A lot of people will not want to disclose the amount involved, can you be different in that aspect?

(Laughs) Don’t let’s talk about that but it’s done deal already. It will surely come.

You’re one of the wondrously blessed musicians right now, what more do you want from God?

God knows best. Although, as a human being, one will always aspire to greater things, only God knows best. He knows what fits you at a particular time.

What’s the relationship between you and K1 like at the moment? Has everything been solidified since it was resolved months back?

Right now, I don’t have any problem with anybody since everything has been sorted out. But I don’t know if anybody has any problem with me.

A couple of months back, it was reported by some print and social media that you acquired N27m Range Rover jeep. How true is it?

I don’t really like saying much about such things. I believe it should be private. I don’t like making public all my accomplishments because of the beef in the industry. I only like announcing those ones that can’t be hidden from the public.

But just last week it was also reported that you acquired hectares of land for your band members. How much did you spend on that and who are the beneficiaries?

Let me just respond to that by saying it’s being processed.

Let’s know a little about it now, the location, amount and the beneficiaries.

(Cuts in) I have just told you, the process is ongoing. I don’t enjoy talking about whatever I do for others or even my achievements. I believe everything should be private.

But we learnt all your band members benefitted from that…

You don’t just worry about that.

Okay, what do you think informed the decision to acquire land for your band members?

Most of them have been with me for long. We have all gone through thick and thin. So, I decided to compensate them in my little way. That’s the reason I put that in process.

No doubt, you’re one of the biggest artistes right now, how often do you get shows and engagements?

I am always very busy performing. I give God all the glory for that.

How much do you charge right now?

The minimum I charge for a party now is N1m. But if it’s a concert, I don’t charge less than N1.5m. At times, I charge as high as N4m. And for political rally, or any related show, I collect N4m.

Being a very busy artiste, how do you take care of your homefront?

That’s settled and well taken care of, especially now that my children are in South Africa.

With benefit of hindsight, what do you think is missing in the Fuji genre that you think if it’s injected it will make the genre better than you met it?

I don’t think there is anything missing. The only thing I think those on radio and television stations should be doing for us is to be playing our music very well. They don’t usually play our music on their programmes. They only believe in playing hip-hop. We only need to appeal to them to help play Fuji as much as they do for other genres of music, especially hip-hop.

But don’t you think the impression is that traditional music, which Fuji belongs, is dying?

No, I don’t believe in that. Traditional music can’t die. Even the hip-hop acts extract most of their lyrics from the traditional music. So, traditional music will be there forever.

What’s your greatest aspiration now as a Fuji artiste?

The only thing I am looking forward to achieving is taking Fuji beyond performing in one small hall or restaurant abroad. For instance, when Fuji artistes go abroad, they only play in small halls or restaurants. I know it’s not easy to achieve but with God, all things are possible. When I was in the States, I used to go to House of Blues in Chicago to watch Femi Kuti live. Then I also watched King Sunny Ade. No Fuji artiste has ever performed there. I don’t know the reason promoters are not sponsoring us there. So, that’s what I am looking for a way to achieve and I know it will come to pass.

 

– TADE ASIFAT

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