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Still living the Good Lyfe

New album. Radio and Weasel are launched their new album tonight on Friday, May 11.They have not released as many hits this year as in previous years, but they say it’s because other artistes are not providing the competition! Edgar R. Batte talked to the two musicians.

What have you guys been up to?
Mowzey: We’ve been doing shows upcountry, in the islands.

Which islands have you been to?
Mowzey: Kalangala Islands. We put up good performances there.

And where are you putting the dimes you’ve been hustling for?
Mowzey: We are trying to build our headquarters and we are actually completing them.

Is this what you call Neverland?
Mowzey: Yeah, in Makindye. We will invite you for the housewarming when we are done with the construction.

Is the construction taking a lot of your time because you’ve not released as many hits in recent times as you did before?
Mowzey: We’ve done a couple of songs. No one has done more beautiful songs than us. Each artiste has been releasing one song and we are waiting for more.

List me some of your recent big songs…
Mowzey: We have Omanyi Mukama, Dudu, Tonjagala…
Weasel: Give me a countdown of artistes with as many songs as we have.
Mowzey: There’s not been a year when we have not released beautiful songs. Sometimes we make it easier for other artistes to catch up and come into play, and we are not talking about sometime producing the same song with different beats and calling it a new song, no. Many of your favourite artistes are not creative enough in the way they write their songs. We want them to make it hard for us in the musical competition but all they do is make it easy for us.

Who would you say is not working hard or plainly making it easy for you as singers?
Mowzey: All of them. We want hard time. I want to listen to a song and say wow, whose is that song.
Weasel: Allan (the Goodlyfe manager) recently brought us a CD with the latest Ugandan songs and there was no good song.

Are you trying to imply that Ugandan artistes are not talented as you are?
Mowzey: They are but they are not working hard enough. If they were, we would quadruple our efforts. We have been at the same pace for four years and we are instead getting competition elsewhere, at the MTVs, Channel O awards etc. These days it’s about newspaper artistes.

Tell me about the newspaper artistes…
Mowzey: Someone gets a rich person who pays to get promoted in the newspaper but they cannot actually sing on stage. So we have been left to represent Uganda internationally.

You say you are representing the country alone but Jose Chameleone is not just Uganda’s finest but Africa’s number six or even number one…
Mowzey: We are not saying we are the only ones (laughs), we represent.
Weasel: Even Kony is representing Uganda.
Mowzey: We are holding the flag high and not hiding it in our courts. Uganda is full of many tribes and you’ll find so many styles married in our music, so we are fusing local and western styles to represent. Uganda is a cosmopolitan country.

Why don’t you speak about your music success?
Mowzey: Most people don’t do the music, they just see it happen. People hire a yacht and claim it is theirs. People are keeping themselves in a small thinking cup.
Weasel: We got a Channel O award but when we failed to get visas people blew it all out of proportion.

Tell me about the visa issue, what really happened?
Mowzey: We were denied visas to the UK. We had problems with the promoter who contracted us to sing at two shows but wanted a third one free of charge, which we didn’t agree to.

Which promoter was it?
Mowzey: Sengo Promoters

So what went wrong?
Mowzey: He claims we did not do all his shows so we could not get visas. We are waiting for a more serious music promoter. It is not good to do business in a dishonest way.

Before you go to the UK you have a concert tonight, what should your fans expect?
Mowzey: It is going to be a musical explosion as we celebrate four years in the music industry. It has been four years of successful music in Uganda. We are not newspaper artistes so we want to make use of our time. Bobi Wine, GNL Zamba, Diamond Oscar, Emperor Orlando, Sizzaman and the Obsessions will all be performing.

You haven’t mentioned your baby mama Lillian on the list of performers, yet she has a couple of hits. How is she by the way?
Mowzey: She’s okay but I don’t talk about my darling in the papers. She’s special. She needs her private life.

You reduced the entrance fee to your show, why?
Mowzey: We would like to make it affordable for everyone. You know the economic times are not favourable. Everyone is invited to the show. Chameleone you’re invited. We still remember him and we would like him to perform. This show will be covered by Channel O, so he should not miss out.
Good Lyfe is a family of all successful people, let them belong. Let them not hate. Let them come and we work together.

Who else is invited?
Mowzey: Everybody apart from Straka and Miles Rwamiiti. They don’t have a future for talent and music industry in Uganda. All they do is abuse it, discredit it and smear it with mud. The rest can come. Those two are very evil parents who are painting a bad picture to their children. They are a bad example to our children.

What is it about your show and independence celebrations? This is May not October …
Mowzey: The theme of the show is Waving Flags. It’s going to be truly Ugandan. Everyone should come with a Ugandan flag as we celebrate 50 years of independence.

Weasel you’re not so active in the interview, what’s up man?
Weasel: I am good, how are you?

Your big brother Jose Chameleone feels hurt you turned your back on him and he sings as much about you?
Weasel: He is a rich man with BMWs, drives an Escalade, he is Africa’s number six singer, I don’t think he sings about me. What would he want with a poor man like me?

He is your brother…
Weasel: He is too big for me. He will be performing with Sisqo.

So you’re not planning to make up with your former boss and brother?
Mowzey: We had our problems as brothers and friends. He has been around for 15 years, he has sang with Beenie Man …

What really happened?
Mowzey: We cannot say what the problems were. It’s our issues as men and he knows them though he won’t tell you. We enjoyed our times together. He got married and told everyone he didn’t want us to attend the wedding though we still attended.

Weasel tell me the truth, did you father all these children they report about you in newspapers?
Weasel: (Laughs) … I don’t have children. It’s because I look after many.

How many do you look after?
Weasel: (Laughs) … Very many.

Not a single one of those you look after is your biological child?
Weasel: I have no children. I am only planning to catch up this year. They have painted a picture that I have 25 children with 25 different women, but I will have my first child this year.

There was word that Washington left your base…
Mowzey: No, Washington is still our producer and we also work with Bushington, Mr Beats, Just Jose and we worked with Benon for a very long time, but of late he has a lot on his plate.

Washington has produced most of your songs, what magic did you find in him?
Mowzey: He easily adapts to many music styles, he’s a fast producer and also very talented.

What’s your last word…
To the fans we love them and thanks for making us what we are. Without you we are nothing, so everything we do we do it for you. We have changed our lives and we would like to grow together with you, so let’s celebrate four years of music success at the concert.

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