Interview

KDDO Is Pushing His Own 'South Afrobeats' Sound

We talk to the Nigerian artist about producing Davido's "Fall," AKA's "Fela In Versace," and the influence that Kanye West had on his debut EP, Too Late Too Lit.

In the last three years, KDDO has been constructing a signature sound that mainly dwells on themes of having fun and living an opulent life. As is evident in his Wizkid-featuring single "Alright" and his memorable hook on AKA's "Fela In Versace," KDDO's input reflects the lifestyle of a man who is carefree and cloaked only in pleasure.

By the time the Nigerian producer and songwriter would usher in "eWallet" featuring Cassper Nyovest, in the thick of a thriving pandemic, the idea for his debut project was established. Building off South Africa's buzzing amapiano sound, Kiddominant, as he's also been known, created a diversion by blending lightweight drums—serving as the base of the sound—with bright, soothing West African melodies. To him, a genre was born: South Afrobeats.

His self-made sonic idea would later be the foundation for this year's Too Late Too Lit EP.

"It started when I met Kanye West," KDDO tells me about the EP's origin. "He was like I should chase my dreams, I should go for it. At that time I was fully a producer, I wasn't singing. Although I had plans of going into singing, I wasn't sure of how to do it. Kanye and I were talking and he was like do what you want to do, believe in yourself. So I took in his words and went for it."

We caught up with the multifaceted sonic architect to talk about his musical journey and his new release below.

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