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How music saved my life — Payseen

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Nigerian singer, songwriter, and music producer, David Chinedu Romaine professionally known as Payseen recently released his first major project, an album titled “Vibe Machine,” a fourteen-track project which is currently available on all streaming platforms.

The project testifies to the fact that Payseen creates more of African contemporary sounds and elements that have an evolutionary sound that is internationally comparable to other big guns in the industry.

In this interview with Soltesh Iyere, the singer speaks on his journey, how he uses his music as storytelling and vocal to our African ways, creating global music that influences and relates to every human existing in this generation.

How did your journey to music start?
My Journey started back in 2010 Lagos, Nigeria as a songwriter, I have always had a passion in writing, and in 2015 I signed a deal with a record label (Vegas Records). After coming first at their auditions as a singer-songwriter.

The journey was quite a rough period for me at that time because you know this industry comes with a lot of sharks (laugh), so at some point, I decided I am gonna start making my own music going by the name “Romaine”.

The name lasted till 2016 when I decided to move to South Africa, coming down here I changed my name to “Payseen “because I wanted to rebrand myself, which has been a good journey for me.

Since you started music, have you ever thought about quitting due to challenges?
Yes, at some point I did think I was gonna quit this music. Things were not going as planned, I suffered depression at some point, but the truth is music saved my life, and I was only what I relied on.

What are the challenges and how you overcome them?
The challenges were trying to get my music out there, to promote it. Financially it has not been easy, but I overcame all that due to praying and the support from my Partner (Doreen) who is a co owner of my Record label (Cassa Gang Ent) because, without her, I would have lost focus and drop my career but her encouragement and support brought me to this point.

Vibe Machine is your first major project, tell us about the process and how hard it was putting it together.

Yes, it was quite hard putting it together because I make a lot of music and I become a bit skeptical about releasing it, due to song choices, every sound I make is fire, so it confuses my team (Kush Empire) when it’s time to select songs for the album.

After selecting some, the next thing I am making another fire song leaving the crew with another decision making (laugh). But now we here, with ‘Vibe Machine’ and I can assure you this is just the tip of the iceberg.

What are the feedbacks like since you drop the album?
It’ has been good so far. I am out here getting DMs about how my music heals, how I shouldn’t stop making music. Honestly, I am proud to give out this project, because the feedback makes me believe it’s gonna be a good year for me and my team.

What do you think the Nigerian music industry should work on to make an international industry?
Oh well, the Nigerian music industry is quite broad, if Nigeria loves you, the world definitely loves you because we’re everywhere and Afrobeats is quite influential.

But I think they should work on the Musician Guide, we need a proper functioning firm especially for the artists, songwriters, and producers, we need media houses that play our songs to pay royalties, so we get to eat in the future. Even when the music ain’t relevant no more, it shouldn’t be only shows, endorsements, or online stores.

What are you currently working on now?
I am working on another project, an EP which will be ready by May 16. It is titled “Blue Roses” it’s a hip hop body of work, but in the meantime, I will be shooting videos for few songs on the “Vibe Machine” album.


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