Atela is a budding musician from the North-central of Nigeria gearing up for a sonic coup in the Nigeria music industry. Here, he tipped off our team on what he’s got up his sleeve towards being an industry forerunner and we had the luxury of getting a glimpse of his journey so far, his two cents on the present state of Nigeria’s music industry, his muse as well as his raving single dubbed ‘Ojuju Calabar’. This embodiment of musical potentialities is definitely one to look out for.
When did it all start, at what point in your life did you decide a career path in music?
My Roman Catholic background allowed me to join the choir at a young age of fourteen. This helped me in shaping my music and giving me a richer sense of sound. It also pushed me to get into the studio and record my first ever song.
If you weren’t a singer what would you be doing differently?
If I wasn’t a singer, I think I would have delved into the film industry, or maybe I would be a business man. But to be honest, I don’t see myself doing anything other than music. All I have ever wanted to do is sing and use my voice to impact the world.
Do you think the Nigerian music industry is getting it right in terms of good music, if yes where do you see it in the nearest future and if no, what needs to be done?
The Nigerian music industry is definitely getting it right. You cannot compare where we are now to where we were five or ten years ago years ago. The world is listening to us and paying attention to our music. With the internet, there’s no limit to how far our music can go. It’s much easier to connect with the rest of the world now, because of the way technology has made everything easy, there are various avenues to share music to a global audience.
Would you consider ‘Ojuju Calabar’ as the song that brought you to limelight??
To some degree, yes. ‘Ojuju Calabar’ definitely plays a big role in bringing me to limelight. There are actually people who see me and refer to me as Ojuju Calabar (laughs). I believe that people who have the song automatically give any other song I release a chance just because of how well it did.
Who is your favourite Nigerian artiste?
I listen to a lot of different musicians.I enjoy the likes of Fela, Bongos Ikwue who sang ‘Cock Crow at Dawn’ and Victor Uwaifo. To be honest, I don’t think I have a favourite artist. I feel there is so much to learn from all of them,
Could you tell us about your family?
I come from a family of seven, I’m the fourth child. My family have been so supportive of my music journey, I couldn’t be more grateful to every one of them for always pushing me and encouraging me. It feels amazing to have their support.
Who is the lucky woman in your life?
Right now I’m really focused on my work and getting my music out there.
Who is your celebrity crush?
(Laughs) I am definitely not telling.
Where do you see yourself in ten years?
In ten years, I see myself as a frontrunner in the music industry locally and internationally. Hopefully my music; old and new would still touch lives and inspire other artists.