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One-On-One With Idyl, Rowlene


Nigeria’s Idyl, currently signed on Universal Music Group label, and South Africa’s Rowlene recently teamed up on a new single, Satisfy Me, which is expected to hit the airwaves soon. In this interview, they spoke about their music careers, experiences working on the new single.

IDYL: Rowlene And I blended so well

What originally sparked your interest in making music?
Music started for me as an escape route. It was the only place I could go to when I’m not happy and sad. It was still the same place I would go to when I am happy. I usually just enjoyed singing to console myself and trying to forget about all the hardships and everything; it was an escape route for me and I found solace in it.

In 2017, you emerged as the winner of The Voice Nigeria, Season 2, carting away the grand prize of a record deal with Universal Music Nigeria and an SUV. Was it a dream come true?
Winning The Voice Nigeria, getting a record deal with Universal Music Group Nigeria, car and a name for myself is really a dream come true. However, it is just a step to where I’m going; I have more steps to climb. So, yeah, this is one of my many dreams come true.

What has the experience been like working with Universal Music Group Nigeria?
Working with Universal Music Group Nigeria has taught me a lot of things; it has put me on a level where I sell myself more than before. It has given me a rewarding platform. As we all know, Universal Music Group Nigeria is a big label, being signed to their label and getting all these opportunities is a great deal for me.

In 2018, you debuted your first single, Better Love, which earned you widespread praise, especially regarding its theme of the ills of domestic violence. What’s the inspiration behind the song? 
Better Love really took me to a different place. When I made the song at first, I was a bit skeptical about it, but when it got out and I started getting positive response sand reviews from people with the message of song becoming clearer to people. I started feeling better about the song and grew to love the song more. The inspiration behind Better Love is the Life events. All over the world, domestic violence has become the order of the many homes and families. This does no good to the society at large, because kids who are products of such families end up being very disturbed. This is my own way on lending my voice to say if you are being domestically abused in a relationship, you must get out of it, move on and do something better with your life.

After releasing Better Love, you went on to release another hit single as a follow up titled Owami. How was the reception like?
Owami was another breakout for me as this was my South-African debut single, featuring some South African artistes. It broke me into the South African music scene. Through Owami, people in South Africa now know that there is a Nigerian called Idyl, who makes good music. Thanks to my fans, my record label and to everybody that made the project come out. It won me more South African fans and I am grateful for that.

You are about to release Satisfy Me ft South African beauty Rowlene. What is the inspiration behind this song?
On this day, I was driving to the studio when my manager, Lucas, sent me the instrumentals to the song, I was about 10 minutes away from the studio when I started vibing to the instrumentals and imagining having my babe by my side and me singing her a song to serenade her. I will say that ‘feeling all sexy’ is the inspiration behind Satisfy Me.

Why did you choose to work with Rowlene out of other female artistes?
Rowlene is an amazing singer; I listened to her song, Boy Bye, for the first time and I really loved it and based on the relationship I have with Nasty C and some other guys on his team, I was able to get through to her for this feature. Rowlene and I blended so well even without being in the same place while recording the song. I felt her music and she also felt mine. I think that was what created the chemistry between us on this record.

The music industry has been very vibrant, with lots of talented musicians out there, who showcase their songs both nationally and internationally. What do you think makes you stand out from the lot? 
I believe what stands me out from the lot is my drive, my vision, my story, what I want to say through my music, the lyrics I want to put out there. Another thing that makes me unique are the memories I want to leave in the hearts of people. I just want to keep putting the soul in my music. I want people to feel something every time they listen to my music. I want people to be able to go back to my music in any mood they may find themselves. I just want my music to make a huge impact on the society. That’s what makes me different.

How do you plan on cementing your presence in the growing music industry?
I will keep being myself, keep churning out good music and keep affecting lives positively through my music. This is how I am going to stand the test of time. I am really working hard and praying to God to keep inspiring me to spread the word through my music.

Who is your greatest motivation?
My greatest motivation in life is my Dad. Growing up with my dad and seeing everything he had to go through to make sure that I got to where I am today, keeps me motivated. Whenever I am down, I just think of how my dad hustled so hard for us to enjoy the basic things of life, this keeps pushing me ahead. My background is a great motivation to me.

What should your fans expect from you in 2019?
2019 will be FIREEE. I have been working all through 2018 till now and I am still making more music. People are going to hear more from me more than ever before in 2019.

ROWLENE: The Decision To Make The Single With Idyl Was Very Easy

What originally sparked your interest in making music?
What sparked my interest in music was my love for music. I grew up listening to a lot of soft jazz and lots of RnB songs, which had a lot of influential impact on my life. I initially did not know that this is what I wanted to do, but music chose me and my interest in music has been its consistency with me and the relationship that we do have.

You released your very first single Imposter in 2016, which quickly gained you exposure and caught the attention of former Free World Music executive, Zyne Marcus, who then offered you a contract to work alongside Hip Hop artists such as Nasty C, Erick Rush and Tellaman. How was it like being the only female artiste in the camp?
Being the only female in my camp was very intimidating because the people who I was surrounded by and got to work with were hardworking, talented souls that had very positive impact on my life. It was very intimidating at first but once I got to know them, they instantly became family. We are always looking out for each other and helping each other out and always being there for each other. I feel like they are my big brothers, looking out for me all the time. Having people like Nasty C, Tellaman and Erick Rush back in 2016 to help mold me into the artiste that I am today is one of the perks in my career.

You have worked with Idyl’s fellow Universal Music Group Artiste, Nasty C, on his two albums, you are also the first artiste signed to his record label, Tall Racks. What made you decide to collaborate with Idyl and has working with him been any different?
The decision to make the single with Idyl was very easy for me to make because I simply got the request via email. It was one of those Internet meet-ups and I trust that, because of how the world works in 2019 where everything is so possible. I am grateful for emails and Instagram.

Idyl and I linked up, he sent me the track and I really liked it. I literally finished the song with him in a couple of minutes, that’s how I usually know if I really like something, when I don’t need to sit and think about how to convey my thoughts. This was something that came straight from my guts and my heart. I felt it more than anything. Music is a feeling, I always say that, and I genuinely felt good about the song and I’m super excited about where it’s going and the relationship that I am building with people at Universal Music Group Nigeria as well.

Satisfy me is a very sensual song with lots of innuendos and with many of your fans curious about your relationship status, are you seeing anyone or are you two together?
Yes, it is a very sensual song. My relationship status right now is complicated, but Idyl and I are not together.

The music industry has been very vibrant, with lots of talented musicians out there, who showcase their songs both nationally and internationally. What do you think makes you stand out from the lot?
I personally think what makes me stand out is my ability to learn and just grow within a very short period, being able to adapt and constantly bringing my vibe to a song. I am a very happy, vibing and outgoing person and it’s easy for people to adapt or latch onto me as an individual before as a musician. I just personally think what makes me different is me, as an entity. My personality, my writing, the way I speak to people, everything. Also, my personal experiences make me different, I feel like everyone goes through different things and can describe it differently, the best part is that I get to sing about my personal experiences sometimes even things that haven’t even happened yet.

How do you plan on cementing your presence in the growing music industry?
My plan on cementing my presence is to consistently drop good music, because that’s all it is for me, it’s about the music, it’s about being consistent and just being present in the moment. So, I’m cementing my presence by dropping good music all the time.

What is your greatest motivation?
I am my greatest motivation because I set really high goals and bars for myself. I’m hard on myself when I do not achieve the things that I set myself up for because I plan a lot. I think that’s how I’ve been keeping my head up and above the waters. I am my greatest motivation.

What should your fans expect from you in 2019?
In 2019 my fans should expect an album. A lot more collaborations and a lot more of me holistically and a lot of visuals. They should expect to see me on their screens a lot more.

In this article:
IDYLRowleneUniversal Music
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