Waconzy He is a Project Management graduate of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO) and the chief executive offi cer of DV-Eight Media, which handles the business end of his show business career. His video track I celebrate has received massive air play and has won him many awards. His recognition did not start with his first recording but in 2008, with the launch of his single, Ikebe Supa, this young artiste has been going places. Welcome to the world of Anyanwu Obinna Kelvin, a.k.a. Waconzy. He spoke with Angela Davies about his life and music. Excerpts:
Who is the real Waconzy?
My name is Anyanwu Obinna Kelvin, a native of Umuahia, Abia State. I was born and bred in Port Harcourt. Right now, I’m all over, everywhere. My stage name is Waconzy. It is a blend of two English words: Wacko and Zany. Wacko is for crazy and Zany for funny. It equally describes my style of lyrical delivery.
Your A-track ‘I celebrate’ has received so much airplay and is loved by many people. How has it enhanced your musical career?
Well, with the belief that someday, sometime in your life, if you keep on doing what you are doing, like Nigerians will say, there will be a time God will butter your bread. I like to see that as a song God actually used to butter my bread. It is actually an expression of real life, of me, my current situation, at the period I sang that song. So, I will like to give God the glory for using that song to make an impact on my life.
You said you were born with a silver spoon and then lost the spoon. Can you tell us about that?
Sincerely, a lot of people have been through the same situation. They were born with a silver spoon. It is more or less an idiomatic expression. You have something that really means so much to you and probably later on, for one or two reasons, the thing more or less leaves your hand. And everybody understands that there is a situation that if it is too bad, it can get too good and if it is too good, it can also get too bad. Everybody should try as much as possible to position self for the future through prayer and hard work. Like I said, I was born with a silver spoon. Everything was good back in the days until it got worse. I came from a broken family; my father and mother have not been together for a long while. Based on that, I am going to advise everybody who is going to get married to try as much as possible to make the right decision before getting into marriage, at least for the sake of the unborn children.
What were the challenges you faced in life when you lost the silver spoon?
It was really terrible. I felt like dying a couple of times but something in me kept telling me that it is going to be well. Though, I wasn’t seeing anything positive, I was very sure everything was going to be alright. But that thing that kept telling me it is going to be all good, kept helping me activate my faith. There was a period when I felt that things would soon change but the hardship lingered for close to two years but I still kept the faith going. And about the second year, things changed.
How terrible was it?
It was really terrible because there was no car, no house, nothing. It was so bad I didn’t have a car and I couldn’t afford a taxi too. Whenever I wanted to ride on bike in Port Harcourt, I just had to hide by covering my face.
What is the latest album from your stable?
The latest is album ‘Diary of a Celebrity’. It is a material put together for my fans to let them know who really I am. It contains 10 videos, my biography and stage performances and it is marketed by Obaino Music. As a matter of fact, I still like to give God the glory because 150 copies were printed to test the market and it got finished in two days. That is one of the reasons I am here in Lagos to sign for more copies. Now that you are in Lagos where we have a lot of big names like Tuface, D’bang, Dare Art Alade and others, do you think you can compete favourably with them? As I always say to myself, there is no shaking; no shaking at all. You see, the sky is big enough for all birds to fly. I am a big bird and I will fly comfortably. They do their things and I do my thing and the fans choose. I am not scared, not at all and I will never be.
What makes Waconzy different from other musicians?
Wanconzy is different because he has his unique style and lyrics. There are lots of topics people have not talked about in this world; I try to do music that people will use for something positive in their lives; music that will inspire them for good.
Who is your role model?
I don’t have a role model. My role model is me, myself. I like some people but my lyrics are inspired by people like Brandy, Vibe Cotaile and the late Gregory Isaac.
Pasuma Wonder was visibly present in your video "I celebrate". What is the relationship?
Pasuma Wonder is a supa dupa brother as I call him. He is an elder brother, somebody who really cares about the up and coming artistes. Of course, the song is in Igbo but I see Nigeria as one community. So it is good to involve people from other ethnic groups. And Pasuma is the kind of image I want to create for myself, everybody likes him. So, I try as much as possible to associate with people like him.
Why must artistes come to Lagos before they make an impact? Can’t they make it where they are based?
Well, I will like to let you know that my song made impact from Port Harcourt, same with Duncan Mighty, Frank Nero and Timaya’s. But as you said, Lagos already has a skeleton, a skeletal system which is working for them, not just for Nigeria, but West Africa, Africa and the world in general. My primary house is in Port Harcourt, I spend 60 percent in Port Harcourt and 40 percent in Lagos so that I can connect with the global musical companies like Trace, MTV Base and their agencies. So, it is not necessary that you must come to Lagos but you must have alliances in Lagos.
What is the future for Waconzy?
It is so bright considering the fact that I am a new artiste and God has actually blessed me. I did not put my hand in anything negative. If God blesses you, He never stops as long as you keep working hard. My two new singles will be out about two months from now, which would introduce my album that will be coming out next year. But my album, Diary of a Celebrity, is out and it is doing very well in the market.
What genre of music do you play?
I actually like to call my music world music because I do all genres of music from soul to hip hop, to dance hall. I try to do genres that will be accepted by both Nigeria and the international market as well.