Ace Hip-Hop act, Fuad Akorin, in this interview with the Editor, FOLORUNSHO HAMSAT, speaks on his journey in music, his passion and future aims. Excerpts…
How did you start as a musician?
I started writing from secondary school, only then it was writing rap. Years later, I started trying to keep a journal and that’s how I wrote my first song. I made a visit to a recording studio with some friends sometime in 2008. That’s how it started.
What is the story behind your stage name, ‘Fuad Akorin’?
I started music as Cupid. Cupid was a name I chose because my music was preaching love. After using that name for some years, I decided to drop the name and adopt my real name Fuad, because to me Cupid wasn’t original enough for the type of artiste I had graduated to. I changed my stage name to Fuad Akorin in 2016. Fuad means “heart” in Arabic, and Akorin means “singer” in Yoruba.
Tell us about your growing up as a prince.
My growing up was not glamorous. It was modest and conservative. It was quality and strict upbringing by my paternal grandmother. And that has helped me a lot in keeping a cool head in the industry I find myself in today.
You are entitled to taking the crown in the future; how will this impact on your career as a musician?
Honestly, I know nothing about this entitlement (Laughs).
At what point did you realize singing was becoming more than a hobby and you took it very serious?
I started recording with the aim of becoming a professional musician but the seriousness came after realizing the effects of the power and reach of music. That was when I got an admission into University of Lagos and I started playing at shows.
How many tracks have you done since you began singing and which of them would you pick as the best?
I honestly can’t count them all because there are some songs that never got completed or ended up as lost files and some collaboration also that I can’t recall. But right now on my music folder; I have about 33 tracks of mine. As for my best, it is yet to come.
What’s your brand of music and what are you doing differently with the brand that stands you out?
My brand is love, in the form of Afro reggae, dancehall and R&B. I believe what stands me out is my lyrics and my delivery.
Who and what motivates you as a singer?
The people who motivate me are people trying to make a positive impact in the world through their music, products, services, visions or ambitions because it is love that drives them. Musically, I look up to Fela, 2baba, Bob Marley and of course, Michael Jackson. Love motivates me. I also draw inspiration from various aspects of life and struggles.
If you had the opportunity to do a duet with two celebrity singers both locally and internationally, what names would you pick?
Locally, I would pick 2baba and Niniola. Then internationally, I would pick Jah Cure and Rihanna.
What do people take away from your songs when listening to them?
Love is it, and all its pleasures and pain.
From your point of view, how is the social media really affecting the song business and the life of singers worldwide?
Social Media is a great marketing tool for almost any business. It’s pros greatly outweigh its cons. For the music business to be precise, it helps in spreading information faster from artiste to fans, be it music release dates, tour dates etc. It also makes it easier for both parties to interact with each other and the artiste can also get vital feedback from his fans through this medium. So, social media is positively affecting the business.
What would you describe as your greatest achievement now even as an upcoming star?
Being able to use my music to preach LOVE.
What’s your long term goal as a musician?
As a creative person; my ideas are limitless but one of my long term goals is to have music schools.
What do you have to say about music, alcohol and drugs?
Music shouldn’t be identified with alcohol and drugs, they have nothing in common. Music is soul food. Music is art and requires discipline and order. Music can be consumed or played by children and/or adults, but alcohol and drugs can’t.
What’s your honest view about the Nigerian music industry?
The rate at which the industry has grown and developed is something to be happy about. It’s doing very well; thanks to God and the stakeholders who are making big moves. Nevertheless, there’s still plenty room for improvement.