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Tay Iwar: A Look Into The Creative’s Heart

Tay Iwar is relatively new to the scene but, in a short time, he has carved a niche for himself. From known hits like Equestrian Love and Wuse II to the recently released Video Star, the Guardian Life team caught up with the creative genius to speak about his life, art and future plans.

Tay Iwar. Photo credit: Tay Iwar

Tell us a little about yourself?

I was born on the 9th of June, 1997, in Lagos by Vivian and Austin Iwar. I am an artist, singer-songwriter, sound engineer and producer from Benue State. I’m based out of Abuja.

You’ve been creating music for some time now and your sound has evolved over the years. What experiences have inspired this evolution?

Meeting people, all kinds of people, like-minded and others, and having meaningful conversations have played a big part.

You’re very conscious of the relationship between music as an art form and culture. How has this consciousness influenced your creative process and what are your plans to explore this relationship in future projects?

Over at Bantu in Abuja, we’ve been curating and bringing visual artists together for some time now. My studio, Jungle, is inside Bantu, so from time to time, I have these creatives vibe to my music and give feedback. I pay very close attention to that feedback and it affects my music.


Your debut album, Gemini, drops later this year and you already gave us a taste of the first single, Video Star. In what way is this new project going to be different from your previous works?

The songs on Gemini are made to aid the ever-going search for self-understanding.

Tay Iwar. Photo credit: Tay Iwar

The media house, Bantu, which you co-founded, is often described as a movement dedicated to promoting a neo-cultural Africa. Care to elaborate on what this entails, particularly the term ‘neo-cultural’?

When Bantu started, our primary goal was to make sure every creative out there knew that being a “creative” in Nigeria was not only possible but also rewarding (both culturally and financially). And now, through our efforts and the efforts of countless other creative professionals, that goal has become a reality. It is still difficult, but the barriers to entry are much looser. Our goal hasn’t changed since the early days. We are still the creatives’ creative agency.

What other creative fields are you exploring at the moment?

Recently, I’ve been drawing, painting and making short videos with my phone.

Do you have any advice for creatives who want to carve a niche for themselves in the Nigerian music industry?

Like everything in life, always pay attention to your health and be honest with yourself in everything. Don’t be easily influenced by the external.

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