Why it can be frustrating being a female artiste in Nigeria


25-year-old rapper, Uwaye Annette Eigbedion, popularly known as Waye, is one artiste to watch out for. The Edo State-born singer started out professionally in 2013, with six singles out and planning to unveil a project soon with her 5sqaud team signed under Clarence Peters. In this interview with SAMPSON UNAMKA, Waye speaks on her music, being a fashion stylist, an influencer, among other issues.

How did music begin for you?

I started by performing other people’s songs and writing my own songs.This I did mostly in English and Literature class. From then, I started doing random features, until I got to school (university) and won an Airtel rap battle in my 100 level. After winning the competition, some final year students came to meet me and told me I had talent.

Afterwards, a guy called Papi Dee started taking me to studios, where I started doing music professionally and putting out my works.

But professionally, I started music in 2013. I started off as a rapper and dropped my first single that same year.

 How long have you been in the Nigerian industry?

Five years and still counting.

 What is your kind of music?

I make Afro pop mostly and a lot of other genre because I’m versatile. I wouldn’t like to put my music style in a box. But I can describe it as Afro pop. I recorded a lot of music recently, and I think I would have to come up with something else, maybe.

How many singles, albums?

I have done six singles, but no album yet.

 Do you think you will make impact with your new song?

Yes, I think so. I think the song is different but very relatable. It’s an alternative beat and infused with Yoruba too. It’s a simple yet deep love song, and I know everyone especially girls have experienced love. It was me sharing my own experience, and I was true to myself. So, I think I am really going to impact a lot of people because the song is relatable. I love this song so much because my friend, Esbee, who is one of the best producers I know, produced it. And recording with him was so comfortable because I started my music with him. Focus Ramon, the mix and master engineer, is one of the best I know too. He did a wonderful job on the mix. So, I was so sure about this particular song.

 

You recently signed a deal with Clarence Peters, can you tell us about it?

It has to be the best project ever. It’s a music group called 5quad and it consists of three boys and two girls. We came together to create an album and it’s a one year project. As an artiste I’ve grown so much having to work with a legend and so many talented people.

We have a project coming out and many videos, so sit back and relax to enjoy it.

It’s a tough competition for female musicians. How do you intend to break ground?

By being myself. Being different and having a different path that is enough to me. I don’t know if I can put that in a box, but I am doing everything I should do the right way. I am promoting my music and brand as much as I can.

At what points do you feel being a female negatively affected your career?

That point when a lot of people think it’s stress signing a female artiste. Another is people trying to see if your are naive so they can take advantage of you. It can be very frustrating.

Are there also positive times?

Well, sometimes there is. Some people are there to genuinely put you on the right path, because they believe you have talent. So when it’s good, it’s good.

You are also a fashion stylist and enthusiast, what else are you into asides music?

I do photography for fun, I am also an influencer, a fashionista; fashion styling! I love to put looks together. I also model for brands. I would soon be dropping collections, and I am working on my designing too.

Who is your ideal kind of man?

I love a man who is true to himself and keeps to his word; one who is intelligent. I really like honest and knowledgeable people, and who have manners too. I like men who are well brought up.

 How do you pamper yourself when you feel the need to?

I dress nice, lodge in a hotel and watch TV and sleep. I also love to go to the beach or just being myself.

What is it about you that would surprise anyone?

That I am shy and I hate to go out.

I’m sure you are aware of the COZA issue, were you at any point molested as a child?

I’ve never been molested but I know rape is not a thing to joke with and people should be more sensitive about issues like that. People tell those stories when they are ready.

Where do you see yourself in the next five years?

I don’t even know where I see myself tomorrow but in five years? Just watch out for me.

What has been your happiest moment as an entertainer?

When I got my first endorsement.

Could you share your saddest moment as an entertainer?

It was an independent day event, I had come really early to perform for a show and when it was almost time for me to perform, I was so nervous I went to use the bathroom first. So when I came back apparently they thought I went to eat when it was time for me to perform. They left me there standing for like five hours without letting me perform because they thought I was proud.

My other colleagues performed even the ones who came hours after me. They rejected me and also embarrassed me. I went home crying like a child because they allowed me perform when everyone had gone home.

What’s the craziest thing a fan has done to you?

Someone did a really huge painting of me and came to drop it at my place.

You recently signed a deal as an ambassador for a brand. What should fans expect from the endorsement?

I have always had an idea of how brand ambassadors should go all out for the brands they endorse. You should expect to be lone blown with the content I have.

How would you describe your childhood?

My childhood was a very comfortable one, we were always comfortable, I grew up in Kano which was a healthy environment considering that Muslims and Christians lived in the same town.

 Growing up, what were some of your childhood dreams?

I have always wanted to be a musician, right from when I was a kid. I will always perform at events and I just wanted to be famous and make music.


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