STRAIGHT OUTTA OJUELEGBA: He started his hustle in Ojuelegba, a suburb in Nigeria, and he is so proud of how far he has come. But even after making it big and rubbing shoulders with Drake, Swizz Beats, Chris Brown, Wiz Kid has remained humble. Here is how to be like the Starboy!
The Starboy is in town peeps. Nigeria’s superstar and Africa’s biggest music export currently, Ayodeji Ibrahim Balogun aka Wizkid is back to mash up Ugandans with many of his bangers. The chap has left many African artistes so behind that it hurts. No musician in Africa simply comes close at the moment. After conquering Africa with some hits such as Show You The Money, Sound It, Final, among others, he has invaded America too. Wizkid aka Wizzy has worked with some American music powerhouses like Drake, Chris Brown, Wale, Swizz Beatz among others and his star continues to shine beyond anyone’s imagination. The singer has hustled, right from his days as a teenager vending music CDs on the streets of Ojuelegba (Yes, Ojuelegba is a suburb in Lagos, Nigeria for those ignorant music fans who care about nothing else than a beat of a song). Wizzy started from somewhere and has been on a rollercoaster since. This is proof that you can rise above the most humble background, a couple of doubters in your family, a bunch of friends who don’t wish you well to make it. Have your hustle on lock down, be honest with your grind and most importantly, don’t con people. And also, hustling doesn’t mean that you eat dinner from garbage pits or spend nights on street pavements. Find people who will help you achieve your dream and irritate them till they listen to you. Wizkid’s career has been about kicking doors open. To be like the Starboy himself, here is your manual?
Stay humble and grounded
Wizzy has kept all the pals that started the hustle with him around. Even with the success and wealth, he has managed to remain grounded. He is even still a self-confessed mama’s boy, would you imagine that? So what’s your excuse for stepping on everyone’s heads because you are driving some ka fancy car, on a loan moreover? It’s even worse for our Ugandan artistes who want to be worshipped because they have some song rotating on Star Fm. They walk into a place and expect you to get star struck by them. Dude, we don’t know you. Try Obama’s bar in Nateete. Swelling like a frog because your account balance just improved doesn’t excite anyone other than yourself. Some of us don’t want to know. Swallow your pride or go hang. Chaps forget you on their rise up but are quick to remember you when they falter. Miss us with that bull. Try to stay level-headed people. It’s the Wizzy way, the Starboy way.
Great work ethic
Let’s all be honest, Starboy Wizzy works super hard. There is no way he would be able to release all that fire with his bum plunged in his couch dreaming. No shortcuts brother. Releasing hit after hit is no mean feat. If you follow him on social media, you will see that the guy is literally everywhere, on tour, studio, video shoots etc. No days off. For many of us, we are everywhere yet nowhere. We pray for the weekend to draw closer, even if it’s just Monday. We want a cold beer in the evening after an aggressively unproductive day. We curse heavens when a public holiday is on a weekend. Work is a drag for many. Dude, start putting in hours! Surprise your boss by working overtime. Find what you love and invest time in it. If you are looking for that promotion in office or good grades at school, run out of that bed fast like you saw a ghost. The only time you should be looking for shortcuts in this town is only when you are stuck in jam. That’s all.
Try new things
Mr Balogun has always been one to test the waters and step out on his own eventually. His musical style is very distinctive and different. It is hard to describe what genre of music this guy does but no one sounds like him. He is willing to experiment with many music genres while also developing a new sound. Something you would kill Mesach Semakula to do. Guys like Ronald Mayinja would probably quit music if they were ever asked to change style of music. C’mon, try something new with your life. Change is not the devil, so don’t fear it. You might be an expert doctor who could save anyone in this world and we appreciate you for it but explore new talents. You could be a top athlete and that is your calling. Don’t let the fat belly discourage you. Hold a mic and sing into it. There might be talent there. Just don’t go around parking at girls’ hostels to feel young again. You will be castrated.
There you have it. Go ahead and be like Wizkid.
Ayodeji Ibrahim Balogun, better known by his stage name Wizkid, is a Nigerian recording artiste, songwriter and performer. He started his musical career at age 11, releasing a collaborative album with Glorious Five entitled Lil Prinz. He will be in Kampala tomorrow for the second time in a concert.