Back with a single, exotically called ‘Destinambari’, Mo’Cheddah in an interview with ThisDay’s Oladipo Akinkungbe on Saturday 24th May 2014, she tells how she cooked up the new beat with Cobhams Asuquo, why she has been of the stage and her drive for the future.
See some excerpts from the interesting interview:
What do you think of new generation rappers like Phyno?
Oh, Phyno is so amazing! For me, the beautiful thing about what Phyno does and the beautiful thing about music in general is someone being able to sing or rap in a different language but the listener still gets the song and enjoys it. For me, that’s talent beyond understanding. I don’t know what he’s saying and I have to ask Igbo people around me what he’s saying but I can feel the spark, the kick and the attitude behind it. The same goes for other artistes around Africa like Mafikizolo with Khona; everybody loves that song but nobody knows what they are saying. It’s all about the groove and that’s what music is about – you don’t need to understand it.
You just need to feel it. I also think Phyno is a game changer in the rap music genre.
Your recently released single, ‘Destinambari’ is becoming hot; what’s the story behind it?
The song was produced by Cobhams. He is someone you call when you want to do something epic and make music history. I had been recording for a while and I felt it, so I just called him up and he came into the studio and straight up he played this instrumental and I was like wow! So beautiful that it moved something inside of me. At first, I was scared because it was slow for me but Cobhams believed it was right for me even though I didn’t see it for me. We started to talk about it. Making music with Cobhams is a different experience entirely – you feel immersed. We listened to a lot of music. He played the piano a lot of the time which is beautiful to experience. He tries to reach inside you or make you reach inside of yourself and bring out something no one else has seen before.
So we listened to a lot of music; he played the piano and we sang for hours on end. We chatted a lot and had a lot of fun.Basically, he was trying to just get a scope of who I was on the inside, and he was just like let’s bring it all out. Let’s not hide behind anything. Stop hiding behind the hair and all that and let people see you from within and that’s how ‘Destinambari’ came out.
‘Destinambari’ came from a place of love, a place of discovery, freedom and confidence.There comes a time as an artiste when you have the power to do what you want to do and what you sincerely love, without being influenced by what other people are doing. What I’ve realized is that music doesn’t have a time-frame or trend.
There are songs that we’ve been listening to for years, oldies that you can’t get over. So what I wanted to do is to create that everlasting feeling of music that will resonate in people’s hearts for a long time.
That title, ‘Destinambari’ must have been borrowed from Bollywood. Do you remember the movie?
Yes, I remember. The spelling and pronunciation is different from the way it is used in the song but Nigerians pronounced it as ‘Destinambari’. The way it was used in the movie, ‘Destinambari’ meant ten over ten or lucky number 10. In India, 10 is a lucky number. I want to take people back to create that everlasting feeling – if you listen to most of my songs it’s something I like to do a lot. I like to infuse something old school into my music and I have done that in practically everything I’ve done
In the video of the song you have a love interest.
Yeah, that was Uti Nwachukwu and a big shout out to Uti because he was such a great sport and cool to work with. It wasn’t easy. I called him up on ashort notice and he was just amazing.
How did you get to work with Phyno on the song?
Well, after we had recorded the song, the producer Cobhamsthought the song was really long and he felt the song needed a rapper which is something I agreed with. Immediately, I saw it as an opportunity to work with Phyno which by now you know is an artiste that I really admire. I insisted on Phyno to also add some diversity to the song because you already have different cultural elements to the song which is the Indian, Yoruba, English and Phynowould come and add the Igbo element as well as his attitude. So I called him up to ask if he would do it and he said yes. I was blown away with his verse. It was really great and I appreciate him coming through on this one.
How will you describe your personality?
I am really chatty, lively. I like to think I am funny. I could be very blunt and truthful and I am emotionally strong and spiritual. Over the past few years I have grown in my confidence.
Is your style still edgy chic?
It has changed a little though because it’s still edgy but I like to add the element of surprise or edgy elegance. I basically do whatever I like when it comes to style. I don’t necessarily follow trends or what’s in vogue.
How do you maintain your sexy figure?
Oh, I work out five times a week and then I stretch. Then, I rest on the last day. The thing is I am a very slim person, so, I do a lot of eating with weight training. It is important to know your body type and exercise accordingly. For me, I have to eat a lot and do proper exercises to take the food to the right places, if you know what I mean. So, I do cardio twice a week and a total body workout once a week. I do a lower body workout four times a week. It’s hard but you’ll start seeing and feeling the changes and the glow that comes from the inside and then you know it’s all worth it.
Watch ‘Destinambari’ featuring Phyno
Credit: Oladipo Akinkungbe for ThisDay