Twizzy… Homeboy Returns For The Beats
Having completed his tertiary education abroad, Afropop/dancehall artiste, Tobechukwu Rodney Ukairo, otherwise known as Twizzy is back home to pursue his music career.
The Abia State native had left the country some years back for his A-levels at the Columbia International College, Canada, after which he moved to the United Kingdom for Masters of Science degree in music and music production at the Oxford Brookes University. Now with a B.Sc. in Sound Technology and Digital Music, Twizzy has since moved back home to promote his brand.
Signed to Lagos-based label, Radio Love, the artiste is currently in the studio, churning out beats in anticipation of his debut album.
“I’m happy with my label situation right now. I feel very excited to share my vibes with the world. I think they’ll love it once they give it a chance,” he said in a chat with Guardian Music.
Born May 19, 1996, Twizzy developed interest in music at the age of 10, after he recorded his first song using some less than professional equipment. He shared the track with his classmates and was pleased with their encouraging feedback, which spurred him to do more.
Throughout his secondary school days, young Twizzy kept writing songs, recording and performing at mini events. Before long, he had gained popularity among students.
“I started making music when I was in JSS 2. In fact, I used to go by the name ‘Twist’, but as a human being I felt I was ‘twisted.’ So, after some time, I decided to change it to Twizzy, which is what I go by till date,” he said.
Though he’s neck-deep into showbiz full time today, Twizzy actually started singing just to attract the opposite sex before he got hooked in the beat.
“I was first trying to get attention, then I realised that I’m naturally good at it. So, I tried to learn more. But there was a particular girl I was trying to have a common ground to talk to and I realised she was into music; she’s not aware of this. So, I made a song and sent it through my classmate; it was cool and so, I felt I should try it. We eventually got together, though not for the music,” he enthused.
Ahead of his album debut, Twizzy is about to drop a new single For The Gram with a video shot in the U.K. The track, according to the artiste, will hopefully launch his arrival on the country’s music scene.
“I worked on it in the U.K. and it should be dropping soon; I want to have a clean introduction before I introduce it to corporate bodies. Besides, we have about seven songs we are exploring at the moment and I don’t want them to be unnecessarily long. I want real good songs, so, we are featuring only one for this project.”
He continued: “The songs are all about love, apart from that, they are energetic songs. I’m giving all my energy to the project, For The Gram; I want to introduce myself properly,” he said.
Recalling his early days in the industry, Twizzy said, “I had to think it through for a while; I wanted to make sure that I started on a good foundation because of what people always say about foundation and home being the best. I also feel that Nigeria is where I can get my most authentic vibe from because I am a Nigerian. On that note, I decided to move back here to launch myself.”
Giving insight into the new track, For The Gram, he said, “The song was actually what I was feeling in the studio; I will give you the break down. The world we live in now is about social media; the Instagram is a new world where people operate. Nowadays, when you take pictures, people will like your picture and you will think they are showing you real love. People, who get lost in the social media hype most times, are girls. So, as a way of making it sound like fun, girls go the extra mile to impress the world and they are doing it for love. So, For The Gram is all about how people flow on Instagram,” he noted.
On the acceptance for his music so far, he said, “I’m happy the way things are going for me, but as for acceptance, I don’t know for now; it’s not about acceptance yet. I just want to be real and I think this is where I can get the best vibes.”
When it comes to collaboration, Twizzy wants to work with Burna Boy and Mr. Easi.
“They are the best Nigerian music artistes to me at the moment,” he noted. “For female artistes, I would want to work with Simi; I love her music. But internationally, I want to do something with Future,” he said.
Though operating in Nigeria comes with its challenges, Twizzy seems to be getting used to the environment, with his eyes on the ball.
“I feel I’m going through the regular process of trying to be heard; that is the challenge for now. I just want people to give me a chance; once they listen, it’s over.”
As for his dreadlocks, he explained, “I started wearing afro hair, then to rough afro, before it got twisted and became dread. By then, it was too late to stop. My mom tried making a comment, but she didn’t fret over it. I remember one day I came back home, I tried to hug her and she was like, ‘this hair?’ So, I feel if that is all I’m getting, I’m good then.”
As an artiste, Twizzy has had his own share of embarrassing moments.
“I have a lot; one happened when I was in the high school. I was running to my class because I was late and there was water all over the floor. So, I slipped for like ten seconds and hit my head on the wall. Fortunately, there was no one there,” he said.
When it comes to fashion, he likes to be cozy, comfortable and unique. But when it comes to colour, occasion and mood dictate.
“It switches, it was pink some days ago, but now, it’s yellow. Sometimes, it’s my eyes; when I look at colours, some of them light up my brain. Colours hit me in a weird way,” he noted.
Asked how he handles female fans, he said, “they are friends, they are fans, they are supporters; I love all of them.”
He continued: “With girls, the first thing I see is her smile. Then, if we can keep a smooth conversation and if it doesn’t feel as if I’m forcing the flow, everything flows naturally.”
With his single about to drop, Twizzy is concentrating on other works, which will follow soon.
“Lots of visuals, lot of music; I’m just trying to let them see the intro. But I’m not slowing down after this; I’m taking my time with the intro,” he said.
While he frowned at the rate at which some artistes indulge in drugs, he said, “I feel their pain; it’s an individual thing and I can’t speak for them. I can only speak for myself; music is my drug. When I make music and when I see people’s reaction, I feel high.”
If he were not a musician today, Twizzy would have been an actor or a comedian.
“I like entertainment and when I hinted my father on that, I was still young and he was like, ‘it’s a cute thing.’ So, it was not hard to support me because they had been supporting me. I don’t take it for granted; I think they know. I love you guys, I appreciate you a lot, thank you so much. I try to paint a scenario where it could have been the other way. So, I appreciate them for the support,” he enthused.