✕ CLOSE Online Special City News Entrepreneurship Environment Factcheck Everything Woman Home Front Islamic Forum Life Xtra Property Travel & Leisure Viewpoint Vox Pop Women In Business Art and Ideas Bookshelf Labour Law Letters
Click Here To Listen To Trust Radio Live

Your mood affects what you create; when you’re in a bad mood, your work will be poor–Mekoyo

Mekoyo is just a simple guy with a simple swagger. But if you want to know the guy behind Mekoyo, then he is Emeka Orisunka…

Mekoyo is just a simple guy with a simple swagger. But if you want to know the guy behind Mekoyo, then he is Emeka Orisunka from Abia State, Nigeria; a musician, a producer, artiste, instrumentalist and a jovial, fun loving guy. My father resides in Kaduna, he is a professor. My mum is an accountant that works with the American embassy. We are just two in the family, me and my elder sister, I am not married, I am single and I don’t know if I am searching. I am a graduate of Mechanical Engineering, University of Nigeria, Nsukka.


Your father is a professor and you are a musician, normally one would expect that you follow in your father’s footsteps, what influenced your decision to go into music?

When I was younger, I was more into the academics but when something is in your bloodstream, you cannot run away from it. My father too is a musician even though he is a professor, he has a band in Kaduna and when people see him on stage, they don’t believe he is a professor, so it runs in the blood. But for me, I decided to take music seriously because; it is not easy combining music with something else. So basically, it is like the passion that is driving me.


When did you start music?

I just woke up and found out that I was into music because in my house then, there were musical instruments everywhere, so my father taught me how to play guitar and from there I saw the piano and then, I was into the choir, so I have always been into music ever since I was a kid. But professionally, I will say 1996. Then, I used to come to a popular studio in Asokoro. Then, I had not known anything about music production at all; I was still a keyboardist in my church then. So I saw how they were doing the thing and I picked interest. I also met Mike, the owner of Sea Martins’ Studios, so it was from the studio that I learnt most of the basic things that I know now.


Can you tell us about your major works?

I got very popular through Styl Plus when their music came out but I have been working with other people too like Six Foot Plus, I have worked with Princess Lola, Faze, Black Faze, and so many other people that I can’t remember now. Everyone is special to me, music is a spiritual thing. I don’t really have any attachment to anybody as a producer. I treat a song the way it comes to me and I treat everyone as my break through.


You said music is a spiritual

thing, in what way?

Yeah, because you get inspiration from God. You do a lot of things that even you cannot tell how you did them. That is why it is always good for an artiste to get a recorder. A lot of artistes have lost a lot of things because they did not record what came to their minds. So, it is about inspiration and when it comes to that, it means you don’t have the strength to duplicate, it comes from God. It is only God that can inspire you. So, it’s either God inspires you or the devil. And if you are not in a good mood, you can’t perform. So it has to do with your emotions too. Your mood affects what you create. If you are in a bad mood, then, you won’t perform at your peak.


People got to know you through Styl Plus and naturally, one would expect that you will continue producing them but that has not been the case. What is the relationship between you and Styl Plus?

I am just their producer and we are friends. I still produce them. In the past, I produced their hit tracks but things have changed, everyone is busy. They are busy, I am busy and along the line, they will come and ask me to do something for them. Even their new album that they just produced, I still produced one of their tracks. So we are still working. But we are not a group; they just met me to produce their songs for them.


Tell us about the Oyoyo Family and how you came about that concept?

Well, when I was in school, I had some friends and we used to say some things like blessoyo, which means, bless you in the fellowship and that’s how Mekoyo came. We used to work together then we had a clique and later I thought about it, that can’t I just come out with a record company that would not be like any other company, let it be like a family thing where everyone works together to push themselves up. So that is how I came about the oyoyo thing.


Your song, Okoro, actually still enjoys some airplay. Did the experience actually happen to you?

Well, for people who know me well, they will tell you it did not happen. But music is all about feeling other peoples’ pain too. It must not be exactly what happened to you. Somebody could narrate an experience to you and you can write a song out of it. In Nsukka, where I schooled, I had a lot of opportunity of meeting guys who are into business and are not properly educated but are doing well financially. So they always have the chance to draw close to girls who are in school. But these girls too have their boyfriends whom they love in school so at the end of the day, they collect money from the business guys and then marry the school guy who is just doing his NYSC. So I just felt their pains and decided to do a song about their experience, as a message to ladies to stop cheating on their men.

Most musicians start off as a group and at the end of the day, they break up to go solo, what do you think is responsible for this trend?

Well, the basic reason for discord is misunderstanding, sometimes, inappropriate handling of information and gossip. Some people could be in a group and think they can make it on their own. But they forget that the single grace that they have is the group. Sometimes, a group might not even be the right place for a particular artiste to be, so it is a very dicey thing. The basic things are for you to know what God wants for you. So if you are not supposed to be in a group, you quit. But if you are supposed to be in a group, you work together as a team because, it is supposed to be more than just business. There has to be some element of friendship for the group to function properly. So what holds them down is not because the business is not moving properly, but because of the unity and the bond they share. So basically, it is difficult for you to point to a factor as being responsible for their break up, you have to be in there to feel their pains and know exactly what the person is going through.


How will you describe the music industry in Nigeria especially against the backdrop of piracy and other issues?

Well, the music industry in Nigeria is growing faster than I ever imagined. A lot of people tend to invest more in music now because of the outcome. The issue of piracy has also not been checked properly and it is not going to be easy because these guys have been there for a long time. Right now, they are in the open, doing the business and artiste actually go to them to even help. So it is a difficult thing. But I think one day, they will be a thing of the past. I also think the regulatory body should step up action against them too. As an individual, their activities have affected me both negatively and positively. Negatively because at times when you produce records, you won’t know the actual amount of records that you sold because it is what the marketers tell you that you believe and I never really made money from record sales apart from my first album which I was advised to sell out rightly. Even my Okoro album, I have not made any kobo out of it but I know it is selling. Positively, their actions are selling my brand. I might not be making money from the sale of albums but I might be making money from other sources. They are pirating it and making me popular.


How does your day look like on the average?


Yeah, I am a producer in the day, in the night, I gallivant round the whole town, I always play in the night but hardly play in the day. I hang out with friends; I play pools and video games.


How do you see the polarization between Lagos based and Abuja based artistes when they say Abuja based artistes are not vibrant?

One thing I know is that the fact that Alaba in Lagos gives Lagos a lot of edge, so anything promoted in Lagos has a way of filtering to other states. So if an artiste promotes his songs in Lagos, it moves faster than Abuja artistes promoting a song in Abuja. Enugu people have also done music that has found its way to Lagos. But from Abuja here, things don’t really filter into other areas. So it is not about the artistes because the artistes don’t promote. We are not media personnel or radio presenters. I believe if the media people here work together to assist the artiste, it would go a long way in breaking that jinx of Lagos. So because of that Lagos Abuja thing, they pack their load and relocate to Lagos and start struggling to make it over there and when they make it they described themselves as Lagos artistes. Several times, I had the temptation to relocate to Lagos but I revisited the urge because I felt people will look for me anywhere if I am good. Besides, I feel if there is proper networking from here, things would move on fine.

VERIFIED: It is now possible to live in Nigeria and earn salary in US Dollars with premium domains, you can earn as much as $12,000 (₦18 Million).
Click here to start.