Interview: From Lagos to Atlanta with WurlD

Nigerian born recording artist WurlD opens up to Okayafrica about his journey to Atlanta, and the beginning of his musical career.

Nigerian born recording artist WurlD has had a unique entry into the music industry. Moving from Lagos, Nigeria to Atlanta in pursuit of higher education, his nomadic journey has proved to be even more rewarding than he could have imagined. After working with artists and producers like Mario and Kenny Smoov, this multitalented songwriter, composer, and producer is finally bringing his own sound to the main stage. Infusing electronic dance beats with velvet-like vocals, WurlD feels he is ready to influence the globe. Okayafrica linked up with WurlD to ask him a few questions about his life and musical journey. Check out what the Nigerian artist had to say.

Okayafrica: How would you introduce your music to those that might not be familiar with it?

Wurld: My music is mainly a fusion of soul and electronic music with sprinkles of different genres of music I have been introduced to as a kid until now. I let the music speak for itself and hope to connect with as many people as possible from different regions of the world.

OKA: You moved from Lagos to ATL to pursue university studies, how did you end up making tracks with the likes of Mario?

W: Music has always been a part of my life even when I lived in Africa at a young age. Moving to the US gave me an opportunity to pursue music more as career while I attended college full time to study computer science. I joined SESAC in Atlanta while I was still an undergraduate and I was able to meet several songwriters and producers. Meeting and working with artists like Mario and many more has been a simple blessing from God.

OKA: How did your move from Nigeria to the US affect your songwriting? Was the move tough?

W: Leaving my parents and siblings was the toughest part for me. That was the first time I've ever really been that far away from my immediate family. My songwriting has evolved since I moved from Nigeria due to the fact that I have been able to study the art by working with amazing songwriters, artists and producers with vast creative styles. Giving up is never an option, I'm always learning and still learning.

OKA: Which artists from Nigeria, or the continent, would you name as influences on your sound?

W: I would say Seal, Fela Kuti, Kanye West, Michael Jackson, and Phil Collins to name a few. I love music and get inspired by artists and music that stand for something positive.

OKA: Do you feel your tracks abridge the scenes of Lagos and Atlanta? Or is there a city/country that WurlD's music sits better in?

W: I believe music should have no boundaries, and I create music with that attitude. I'm curious to see how far beyond my imagination my music can reach. Only time will tell.

Image: Nabsolute Media

Reekado Banks Recalls The Carnage of The #EndSARS Protests In Single 'Ozumba Mbadiwe'

The Nigerian singer pays his respects to those lost during last year's #EndSARS protests.

Nigerian singer and songwriter Reekado Banks is back with a track that is as socially important as it is a banger. It seems fitting for the singer's first solo release of the year to be a tribute to his fellow countrypeople fighting for a country that they all wish to live in. The 27-year-old Afrobeats crooner has returned with endearing track 'Ozumba Mbadiwe', honoring the one-year anniversary of the #EndSARS protests that saw the Nigerian government authorize an onslaught of attacks on Nigerian citizens for their anti-government demonstrations.

The protests took the world by storm, additionally because the Nigerian government insists that none of the police brutality happened. In an attempt to gaslight the globe, Nigerian officials have come out to hoards to deny any and all accusations of unlawfully killing peaceful protesters. Banks mentions the absurd denials in the track, singing "October 20, 2020 something happened with the government, they think say we forget," in the second verse. Reekado's reflective lyrics blend smoothly and are supported by the upbeat, effortless Afrobeat rhythm.

In another reflective shoutout to his home, 'Ozumba Mbadiwe' is named after a popular expressway on Lagos Island that leads to the infamous Lekki Toll Gate where protesters were shot at, traumatized, and murdered. Although packed with conscious references, the P.Priime produced track is a perfect amalgamation of the talents that Reekado Banks has to offer; a wispy opening verse, a hook to kill, and an ethereal aura to mark this as a song as a hit. On "Ozumba Mbadiwe," all the elements align for Reekado's signature unsinkable sound to take flight.

Check out Reekado Bank's lyric video for his single 'Ozumba Mbadiwe'

Reekado Banks - Ozumba Mbadiwe (Lyric Video)

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