Interview: Alex O, On what Inspires His Marriage, His Music and the Future

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Until few years ago, when he hooked up with Nollywood star actress Oby Edozie, nothing much has been heard about the dwindling career of Alex Okoroigwe popularly known as Alex O:That pop icon whose hit song”Celebration” ruled the nation’s airwaves in the early 90s. Like most of his contemporaries including Mike Okri, Ortis Wiliki, Blacky, Daniel Wilson, Mandators among others, Alex O ruled the airwaves in the 90s and disappeared into thin air.

The RnB crooner who has a lovely voice and actually dictated the pace then with his classic songs, especially “Pretty Women” and “Celebration”, allegedly absconded with his pretty South African lover. He was one of the very few Nigerian musicians who got fun seekers grooving back in the days. A Jerry-Curl hairstyle wearing folk, who is currently into animation and music composition, Alex O may not be as popular now as Psquare, D’banj, Kcee, 2face, name them.

But during his time, he was a force to reckon with, in the Nigerian music scene. No show would be complete then without Alex O gracing the stage. Recently, Showtime Celebrity ran into him, in Lagos and the Imo State- born RnB singer opened up on the story of his musical odyssey, revealing, however, that he’s planning to stage a comeback to his first love- music. According to him, while he was away, he went back to school to study Film and Animation in South Africa. “I spent about four years in South Africa. But most of the time, I was in Singapore, Sweden and France. I have travelled around the world. I’ve always been in music, but I studied Film and Animation. It’s all within the arts terrain. I’m working on an album, and I’m doing a lot of visuals work in terms of 3D Graphics, and animation for TV commercials. I also work with some of the people who are producing music videos in addition to doing post-production work for movie producers,” he revealed. Bubbling with life, and renewed vigour, Alex O is determined to relaunch his career. After many years of hiatus in the music scene, Alex O hopes to continue his career by producing for willing artistes.

Staging a comeback to the music scene At the moment, Alex O said, he’s trying to reidentify himself with the industry. Describing his comeback to the industry as “rough and interesting”, Alex O who is the C.E.O of DigiAudioVisuals, an entertainment firm based in South Africa said he’s fully back in the country to relaunch his musical career. “I’m looking at my return to the industry from the angle that I’ve been away for quite a long time. I’m just re-aligning myself with the industry again. There are a couple of challenges here and there, but things are working out fine, “ he said. Interestingly, Alex O revealed that even though he didn’t release any song while he was away, he never stopped singing. He narrates, “I’ve always been singing. It’s just that I didn’t release songs, but I was performing at high profile events abroad. I was performing at American embassies, British High Commissions among others.”

What I missed since I disappeared from the scene Talking about what he has missed so far, the father of two children named the big stages, declaring that he can’t wait to get back his groove. Narrating further, he said, “You know we used to perform in stadiums and big halls pulling as much as 10,000 people, unlike in other countries where one is not relatively known.” For Alex O, a musician remains a musician any day. Disagreeing with the fact that an old musician cannot fit into the new trend, the returnee singer said, “ I don’t think musicians should be looked at as old. A musician is a musician; any day he strikes a lovely chord, people will clap for him. If you really want to continue in the game, all you have to do is to look for materials. The industry is so opened now; all that matters is a good song. Once you have a good song, and people like it, then you’re back in the game.” Meanwhile, comparing music of yesteryears to today’s music, Alex O noted that most of his contemporaries quit the music scene because it was not lucrative then. “During that time there wasn’t much money. I can attribute it to the fact that Nigeria didn’t have much of a middle-class that had the money to spend. You could actually count the number of rich people on your fingertips, and everybody else was struggling.

So, buying music then wasn’t as comfortable as it is today when a lot of people have extra money to spend. In those days, for you to be able to afford the money to attend shows, you would have had to forgo certain things. Today, corporate organizations such as MTN, Glo and other leading telecommunication companies are seriously investing in the entertainment industry.” On the kind of music he playing currently, Alex O describes it as “ danceable music.” I also do slow songs. He said, he’s planning to do a remix of most of old songs, stressing that what he did back in the days was good, as it was in vogue then. “Yes, I’ll remix some of my songs, but I haven’t chosen of them. I’m still sampling opinions and ascertaining what people would want. If I want to release them now, I will have to modify them and get them to fit into today’s pattern, so that people will appreciate them the same way they did then.” However, since he studied Film and Animation, the singer has expressed desire to team up with actress wife, Oby Edozie to produce films. He said, “Since I studied Film and Animation, there’s only one way to go. If we have to embark on a project, then we can handle it by ourselves. I mean if I can do most of the work, why do we have to pay somebody else to do it. It’s an advantage.”

‘I didn’t stop my wife from acting’ Alex O got married to actress Oby Edozie in 2013, after years of playing hide and seek game. The marriage has been blessed with two kids. Recounting the story of how he met his wife, who recently gave birth to their second child, Alex O said, “I met my wife in London some years back. I saw her at an event and immediately fell in love with her. We have been dating secretly since then. So, it’s a story of a boy meets a girl and the rest is history.” Alex O does not believe in procrastination. According to him, “If you run into somebody your heart accepts, you just go for her. We don’t have too much time to spend on this planet. So, we have to make ourselves happy while sojourning on this earth. You just start it and ask God to guide you.” Their marriage which was consummated at a local registry in Lagos, was indeed the high point of a relationship that started in London several years ago. Unfortunately, many have been wondering the whereabouts of Oby Edozie. In fact, after her court wedding, Oby Edozie disappeared from the screen and since then, nothing has been heard about her. Does it mean that her husband stopped her from acting? Alex O denied doing so, though he admitted that she has been busy taking care of the family. “She’s been taking care of the family. She just had the second baby, and very soon, she’ll go back to her work. I never stopped her from acting because that’s what she knows how to do best. She just needed time to have our children and thereafter return to her work. A pop singer, songwriter and producer, Alex O is best known for his song “Celebrate.” Back in the days, Alex O joined the Lemmy Jackson music company and worked as a production assistance and songwriter, later signing to PolyGram Records which is also known as Premier Music of Nigeria in the year 1988. He rose to fame in the music scene and became popular in the music scene in 1990s, after releasing his hit song, “Celebrate” which became a global disco hit in the 1990s. Alex O’s song “Celebrate” is said to have been featured on several music television shows. In early 2007, Faze described Alex O as one of Nigeria’s top music legends in his song “Originality.”

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