Master of Showbiz: Calvin Kalule, known to many as Calvin Da Entertainer has been at one TV station for his entire career, and tomorrow he will be celebrating 11 years in this business with a Takeover party at Freedom City. Lawrence Ogwal had a quick chat with him.
Eleven years, same media house, same show…Any hidden secrets?
I am not the only person who says UBC is a good company. I walked into the station as a teenager who just wanted to be a presenter but I ended up becoming multi-talented. Why would I leave a company with a good working environment, a company that taught video editing, production and on top of all gave me the chance to manage a sister TV?
I am not about to leave. I have a dream and once I achieve the dream, I will leave this place and concentrate elsewhere. I wish to start my own production company as well as own a media house.
You have a Takeover Party happening tomorrow, is it a celebration of 11 years in the media?
The Takeover party is like a public holiday for every stakeholder in the Ugandan entertainment industry. It will bring together artistes, music producers, videographers and entertainment media personalities in one place. The idea of the Takeover party is not about me but everyone who has taken over the music industry, including the young generation from 10 years ago. The title name is just a theme that I started with the aim of celebrating the entertainment industry. I hope to make it an annual event, if all goes well.
Fifty artistes on one stage, how many of those do you think became stars after meeting you in studio?
Saying they are stars because they met me would not be the right thing to say because I do not believe that just Calvin can change someone’s music life. But saying that I am one of the people who contributed to their success in one way or the other would suffice. One singer I am proud of is Mun*G, who after our first interview, gave me Shs3,000 as a thank you tip but I decided not to take it and told him to use it for his transport. I also told him that after three years, he will become a star and bring me a big bottle of Champagne.
How do you compare the industry 11 years ago and now?
Back then, there was no social media and there was limited access to digital. It was so easy to go on TV and lie to the world about international artistes such as 50 Cent. Right now, there are many avenues for expressing oneself. However much mainstream media has full control, social media is key in the media business.
You have seen many artistes grow, do you support MC Kats for chasing Fresh Daddy offstage?
Yes and no. I support MC Kats because he had a message to put out there but maybe there was a problem with how he packaged his message. None of us is the gatekeeper in the music industry to decide who joins and who doesn’t. I would not play Fresh Daddy’s music on my show but I would host him to understand the story behind his clownery. What Fresh Daddy is doing has been done by Bad Black, Don Zella and Amooti, among other people.
Achievements in last 11 years
I find it hard answering a question about achievements because what I would refer to as an achievement may not be a big deal to another person. When I set a target and execute it, I call that an achievement. I have my personal achievements that I wouldn’t want to mention here, but my biggest achievement is being one of the people that have supported the music industry.
Best and worst encounter…
About five years ago, I clashed with Tamale Mirundi over an excerpt that was removed from our interview clip. I felt bad because he was senior to me.
The best moment is the day I wed my wife Amanda Kalule Twebaze and the day my son was born.