RETURN: In 2008, Jamal Wasswa dominated airwaves but went silent, although his music keeps rocking. The musician met his fan Faizel Maganda and they talked about plans for his comeback.
Where has Jamal been?
I had a music break but that does not mean I have been relaxing. I have a new song titled Nagezako.
Why did you decide to take a break without warning your fans?
I know, but I did not alert anyone when I started singing. Anyway, my contract with my then manager had expired and I decided to rest before revising it.
What guarantee do we have that you will not go back into hiding?
I have rested enough and I am officially back and have an album that is almost done.
Do you have enough work to keep you going this year?
I do. My manager is organising a video shoot for Nagezako, although I had shot one while on break but was advised to redo it.
Which of your songs do you like and why?
Abakyala Bazira because it is a true life story.
Are you still targeting female fans?
Not really. I am targeting everyone but the ladies will always come first.
You are a ladies’ man going by your huge female fanbase. Are you married?
I am not married.
The industry has new artistes. What plans do you have to get back on your throne?
I am not chasing anyone. I do music because I am passionate about it. I will keep my usual pace and deliver quality work for my fans.
When did your musical journey start?
In 2007 with Obawuwo. Before that, I used to do karaoke at Sabrina’s, National Theatre, and Blue Africa among other places in 2005. My first hit was Omulembe Gwabarasi with Rocky Giant in 2006.
What is your dream?
I want to build an international studio and help young talent because no one has been able to do that.
You also play football. Why didn’t you take that path?
Football in Uganda is complicated. It does not pay like music. For example, an artiste can earn Shs5m in three days while an ordinary footballer can hardly earn Shs500,000 a month. But I play football during my free time in a team called Kisugu FC.
What do you think of the music industry in Uganda?
We lack identity and most artistes are selfish. I think it is time for some of the big artistes to pave way for upcoming ones. And it would be better if they at least teach the young ones how they did it, so that they can become successful too.
Who inspired you to do music?
My late brother Muhammad Mukasa. He used to take me to karaoke gigs and he supported me all the way.
Tell me about your family background?
I was born to Muhammad Mutabazi and Zaina Nalutaya. We were born eight children but four passed on. I am the only one doing music.
What about your education background?
I went to Kisugu Primary School, Kakungulu Memorial for my O-Level and Kitende Senior Secondary school for my A-Level. I went to Makerere University but never finished because I could not do both music and school at the same time.