Aare Shina Akanni Aroworeyin is a force to reckon with in Fuji music industry. His unique voice is second to none. Ever since he shot into the limelight, he has been on high demand from his fans both internationally and locally.
This auto engineer turned singer in this interview with AKIN SOKOYA speaks on the reason for selling his hotel and other sundry issues.
Where have you been all this while?
I’m alive and I’m thanking my God over my family, my fans and my band members. I’ve been moving from one country to another to do what I know how to do best. I’ve been to America, United Kingdom, Paris among others but above all, home is still home. We are running our shows both at home and abroad. We do more shows abroad these days than at home.
The intention of your fans is that you have relocated abroad?
That’s not true, whenever I travel for shows abroad, I return to Nigeria within two weeks. I always work with my schedule in Nigeria because I always have shows in Nigeria on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
What’s the latest about you?
I’m always new everyday with my songs, composition and style. My new videos titled ‘Fuji Source’ and ‘Discovery’ have just been released into the market. I’m hitting the studio soon for another record.
Are your two new released albums only on video?
No; one is audio CD and the second one is video CD.
Most artistes have not been singing current affairs like before during the reigning period of the late Sikiru Ayinde Barrister, Alhaji Kollington Ayinla and others, what do you think is happening?
Some Fuji musicians are still doing that; we would not stop informing people about the current issues in our country because we’re also citizens. I always sing current affairs in my records. But for those who have not been doing so, I implore them to be doing it, as this would educate the unborn generations in the nearest future.
Hip Hop artistes are known for one man performance with their style, don’t you think this is killing live performance?
It’s different from Fuji music. As a good Fuji musician, you need to have good percussion, omele, sakara, sekere, iya ilu, jazz to mention but a few. Hip Hop music fans are quite different from our own fans because what they do is to just mime their CD on stage and dance to it.
How would you react to the rift between you and your former record label, (Jolaosho Records?)
I’ve settled my rift with him. He is a brother, I can’t fight him. He is still my adviser. It is not that we really quarreled. I’m not working with his company for now. I’m with Exotic Music & Films Marketing outfit.
He is selling all my music both the old and the new.
Which of your old music did you give to Exotic to market?
‘Dancehall’ and ‘Discovery’.
As a veteran in the Fuji Chamber, what have you been doing to uplift the upcoming Fuji musicians?.
We encourage, advise and pray for them.
With the way hip hop music is going, don’t you think it may over-shadow Fuji music?
No, hip hop music can’t over-shadow Fuji. Hip Hop is on its own and Fuji music is on its own too. If you can beat your chest on whatever you’re doing, your music would reign forever.
Any plan to duet with Hip Hop artiste?
Yes, I can duet with hip hop artiste that could deliver good Yoruba lyrics.
What has been your greatest disappointment as a Fuji musician?
A lot of things have gone wrong in the industry that needs to be corrected. In those days before we released our album, our posters would have been posted and people would be watching and anxious to see the release of the album but today; it’s not like that again.
Do you have your own record label?
Yes, I have Sina Akanni Record label. I’ve floated this since the beginning of my musical career. My first record started from that label till date but I only give my albums out to marketer to sell it.
Do you have another artiste on your record label?
No, I don’t have artiste yet.
Why don’t you release live performance like other Fuji artistes these days?
I can’t be too cheap that any camera will record my performance and release it to the market every week.
There must be criteria. Already, I have two live performances that will be released into the market soon titled ‘Ahamadiyya Extravaganza’ and ‘Too Much Money’. After this release, another one will be released towards December.
Outside piracy, what other factor do you think is affecting the growth of Nigerian music?
There is no adequate advertisement for our work by the promoter and marketers and this is affecting the growth of our music. They need to boost our works through radio, television, newspapers, magazines and the Internet.
What would you say about the alleged rape scandal of Abass Akande Obesere?
The truth has come out that it was framed up and Obesere has been vindicated. Meanwhile, Obesere that I know will never do such. There are many female fans surrounding the artistes who are ready to sleep with us but we avoid their advances.
What would you say to the raging crises in the Fuji industry, especially between Saheed Osupa and Pasuma?
That has been settled.
But there is another one which involves Mosebolatan and MAAN President?
That’s not a big deal, it will be settled also.
How did you start music?
My parents are from Abeokuta. I schooled at Lagos Progressive School, I left for Lisabi Grammar School, Abeokuta, Ogun State. Thereafter, I enrolled at Elizade Motors to learn automobile engineering. I discovered my music talent from there.
How did you discover your talent?
I discovered my talent from Arabic School ‘Ile Kewu’. We used to sing to wake up people during Ramadan period.
Which was your first album and which one really shot you into the limelight?
My first album ‘Akoja Ewe’ was a sell-out and it shot me into the limelight.
How many albums do you have till date?
I have 32 albums.
How do you relax?
Most of the time, I travel abroad on vacation to relax.
What’s your favourite colour?
I’m a rainbow person. I love variety of colours.
What’s your favourite meal?
Amala with fresh fish.
Are you a car freak?
Not really but I love cars that could speed very well.
Is it true that you have a hotel?
Yes, I have it at Ibafo but I’ve sold it out. I have another site that I’m developing for the hotel.
What’s your relationship with K1, Pasuma and Saheed Osupa?
Our relationship is cordial. I was at K1’s daughter’s wedding penultimate week?
What are your hobbies?
Playing table tennis and reading Yoruba novels.
Are you a football lover, what international club do you belong to?
I love Barka.
What message do you have for upcoming musicians?
They should work hard and be prayerful. They must not spoil the future of Fuji music.
In what ways has your wife been supporting your career?
Behind ever successful man, there is a woman. She has been very supportive.
How do you cope with female fans who want to get intimate?
I separate my career from my love life. I know how to deal with them as my fans.
Could you have a joint account with your wife?
Yes, I already have one joint account with my wife. I have my company’s account and my personal account.
How have you been coping with the excesses of miscreants when you go to perform at shows?
I know how to settle them when I run into them at shows but the most important thing for me is my security.
What makes you stand out from other Fuji artistes?
My unique voice, my music and my percussion.
How do you get inspiration?
It comes to me naturally.
When did you release your first album precisely?
It was in 1986/87.
Where do you normally have your gigs?
Mable Field Hotel, Oshodi, Lagos and Merrydot Hotel at Amuwo Odofin.
Do you have any of your kids taking to music?
My children are reading Law and my last child is at Caleb School.