Banky W’s dream of building “an empire with fantastic artistes” has once again hit a major set-back following the exit of another vital ingredient, a rap artiste, Raoul John Njeng-Njen, otherwise known as Skales. Unlike the controversies that surrounded the exit of star boy, Wizkid exactly a year ago, the 22 year old singer parted ways with the label amicably.
Multiple sources said the Mukulu crooner’s 3-year deal was not renewed by the label due to his inability to generate more income for the Banky W’s led Empire Mates Entertainment (EME).
“The artiste spent three years on the label that nurtured him to becoming a big brand in the industry but unfortunately, he is not profitable. And to whom much is given, much is expected. Since he couldn’t deliver, he didn’t win any major award, no international recognition, no endorsement, there is no need for renewal of his deal after expiration”, said the source.
ENCOMIUM Weekly was unable to speak with Banky W, as all his phones were not reachable. We, however, got across to Skales on Saturday, February 22, 2014, who confirmed the news, saying, “I have parted ways with EME.” He therefore promised to response to all our questions via email.
Also asserting the development, the CEO of M.et.al Entertainment, Osagie Osarenkhoe, who also manages some of the artistes on the label, said the story being circulated about why Skales didn’t renew his contract is untrue. According to her, Skales contract expired and both sides agreed to go separate.
The talented singer, popularly known as EME soldier was discovered by the owner of M.et.al Entertainment, Osagie, and was officially signed alongside Wizkid (Ayo Balogun, real name) by Banky W in 2009, after an impressive outing at the Zain Tru Search talent competition held in 2008 and the Soundcity Blast Concert held in 2009. His rap acapella and unique deliveries totally won the hearts of many.
As a teenager, Skales, who recently graduated from LeadCity University often travelled to Jos with some of Nigeria’s finest producers, Jeremiah Gyang and Jesse Jagz. After he emerged winner of the northern region of the Zain Tru Search Challenge, Skales dropped his first single, Must Shine, which enjoyed good airplay. He has dropped songs, including Mukulu, Komole and My Baby which played significant roles in EME compilation album. The singer has also featured great artistes like Kefee, Reminisce, Shayman, Tupengo and label mate, Niyola. Skales is yet to release an album.
…HIS ROMANCE WITH TIMAYA
Days after his break-up with EME, Skales was spotted at Dem Mama Record label boss, Timaya’s Lekki Phase 1 home in Lagos. There were rumours that the singer is considering signing a new deal with Timaya, but this was outrightly denied by Osagie, the singer’s manager, stressing, “Skales is not signed to any record label as we speak. He’s presently focusing on his career under the management.”
Apart from Banky W, who is the arrow head of the label, EME’s hope of becoming an empire can still be resuscitated by very young and energetic artistes like Niyola, Shaydee, and of course, Dj Xclusive. The trio were signed into the label in 2012. Niyola, the First Lady of EME, who started her career way back in 2002, when she emerged the first runner-up of the Amen Starlet competition, is not doing bad. She has churned out hot songs and electrifying performances.
Likewise Shaydee who has contributed significantly to the growth of the label and his music, with hot singles like Ti e Nikan, O Poju and Won Gbo Mi. While the rave of the moment, Dj Xclusive, who also doubles as Wizkid’s official DJ, has released singles such as Ibebe featuring Olamide, No Time, featuring Skales, among others.
We learnt you’ve parted ways with the label that uncovered you, EME. Is that true?
Why did you leave at this moment?
The contract came to an end and we agreed to part ways. I am now focused on my career as an independent artist.
There were rumours you weren’t happy with the way the label is being run, especially after the exit of Wizkid. Can you clarify this?
Like everything in life, there are pros and cons for everything. There were things I liked working with EME and there were stuffs that I didn’t but that’s all between the label and myself. It’s all good because now I can make my decisions and steer my career the best way I know.
What were the terms of your contract with EME from inception?
It was a decent contract, there were challenges from time to time. Exact details can’t be disclosed to the public.
What is your next move?
Like I said, I am focused on working on me, my music and building the Skales team right now.
How was your experience while working with EME?
It was fun, I learnt a lot. I became a better artiste and of course, the exposure was massive.
What will you consider were the gains and pains of doing music generally?
The gain is the good life, which includes fame, fans, money, and easy access to the things that you dreamt of, growing up. The pains would include the terrible rumours and not being able to be your true self.