She is a lawyer by profession, a great beauty to behold with high class of sophistication. Despite her beauty and the talent she’s got, Arese Daniels is a gospel artiste with a great closeness to God; her Creator. Having completed work on her new album, Eyin nikan soso, Arese is going to places with her evangelism via music, winning more souls for Christ through healing them with her musical ministration. She speaks with AKIN SOKOYA. Excerpt:
Please, introduce yourself
My name is Arese Daniels; I am a lawyer and singer. Combining these two together; I think it is God! Taking an in-depth into my background, I was born into a polygamous family; I lost my dad some years back. I schooled in Lagos, my primary school was Wright Memorial Primary School. I attended Shepherd Hill Girls High School, Obanikoro, Lagos. I had a brief respite at University of Ibadan at theatre arts department, but later went to University of Benin where I studied law. Upon my completion, I came to Lagos for my Law school and later got called to bar.
How did music come in?
I have always seen music as a calling not a hobby. I love to sing and as I was growing up, people would not only commend my ability that I sing well, but people would always tell me that my songs do bless their soul.
People would walk up to me with testimonies that when I was singing, my songs did heal their soul! These and many more established the fact that I have a calling in music not just me being a lawyer.
My passion for souls gave birth to Arese Daniels Logistics. It was established with the intention of helping the needy, the less privileged and speaking up for the oppressed in the society.
Do you have the trait of music in the family?
No, not at all! Though my dad was a very good tenor; apart from that, no one sings professionally in my family except me.
Being a qualified lawyer, how many years’ experience have you got?
I have been practising law for seven years now. The experience has been nice; I am into property and corporate matters and it’s been a beautiful and great experience.
How did you delve into music?
I have always been in music; it isn’t a matter of delving. I can say that I actually delved into law because music has always been part of me. I delved into law because when I was in secondary school, I was a science student. My assertions on issues and mannerism made my brother to advise me about studying law and here I am today. As regards my calling in music; I could recall vividly that I led my first praise and worship at 10 and it was in a big congregation. Since then, I have been travelling from one branch to the other across Nigeria. The name of the church was Christ Evangelical Church. People would always look out for my performance, then I used to take the solo and it really gave me an enthusiasm to continue doing the Lord’s work. The talent has always been there, it’s just that education had to put it on hold but now, it’s picking up at a very fast rate.
What inspires your type of music?
I sing as inspired by the Holy Spirit. I can rap, I can do jazz, R and B, Praise, worship and many more. Like I said; I sing as inspired by the Holy Spirit.
How many albums do you have to your name?
My first album was titled Justified, then I released a single in 2014 titled “Let it rain” and the latest single is titled “Eyin nikan soso” (Only you).
How do you marry the two together, law and music?
Well, I do as God inspires me! He has been wonderful to me and this has really helped me in my career. His blessings on me have really made my music acceptable to all and sundry. People’s reaction to my music has been awesome!
Which do you prefer, music or law?
Music is my destiny while law is something I can describe as being part of me. I can wake up singing, even sing in my sleep. I think music and I sing music every second of my existence. Law is still very much viable to me but I am confident that law will definitely step down for the musical aspect of me.
When did you start experiencing stardom?
When I had my first album. Meanwhile, there was a competition in Benin, Edo State. It was a Mid-west regional competition. I came first in the first category with a cash prize of N100,000, that was in 2004.
A cash prize, what did you do with the money?
I gave some to people that played with me, my mum too got something, I couldn’t give dad because he was no more. I also paid my tithe and gave out some to the needy. The cash prize was an encouragement to me and thanks to God today, my investment in music is turning into success.
Music in Nigeria; what is your take?
I think Nigerians are really trying so much both in secular and gospel music. My take on music basically is higher height, Nigeria is getting there. I think we are there already and I am seeing higher heights to be attained!
How do you handle male fans?
That is settled! I don’t want to talk about that now.
Are you married?
Yes I am!
What is your projection in another five years based on your musical career?
In another five years I want my fans to expect a bigger and better Arese Daniels, a phenomenon, a larger than life persona. I believe I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me. I want my story to be very inspiring though not a perfect one but yet a STORY OF HOPE.
I believe living an inspiring life that every youth would look up to me in one way or the other and aspire to be like me.
Basically my life has not been perfect but I believe it has been an inspiring one! I am sure it’s very inspiring but not perfect!
My advice to people is; your life may not have been perfect but make sure your story is an inspiring one.
What is the meaning of Arese?
Actually it is longer than that, I had to shorten it for easy pronunciation but the meaning is; if you came well you must succeed.
Which form of gospel music do you play?
Gospel music could be Juju, remember, Juju is a beat, Tungba is a beat, but people get it wrong. Afro is also a beat including fuji. Mike Abdul sings Gospel-fuji and he is someone I so much love and appreciate his ministry. So they are all beats, it doesn’t necessarily depicts the singer’s way of life or religion. It is all to the glory of God but man invented them.
Many out there sing gospel, what makes yours unique?
Mine is unique because I am multi-faceted! I can sing anything as the spirit inspires me. I have seen some gospel singer call themselves a worshippers or Praise singers; some describe their mode of music as gospel fuji or Juju. By the grace of God; when the spirit of God is in you; definitely you can work in all manners. The Holy Spirit is in me and that is my success story, I have God living in me!
What is your relationship with God?
I am very conversant with His word, and I study the word of God, meanwhile it is not the question of how many times have you gone through the Bible but it is having the word being in you. I have completed the whole Bible three times with a group by His grace!
Who is your mentor?
I have several of them, secular and gospel too. Late Whitney Huston was a great mentor; Sinach is a trailblazer and also a pathway finder for gospel singers. I have quite a good number of them. TY Bello, Adaehi; Lara George; Mike Abdul; Nosa; Nathaniel Bassey and a whole lot of them inspire me with their music.
I have got two singles and my full album will be coming out very soon with the video. The album is titled LET IT RAIN.