Future ’ll tell if I’m fake or not – Buga



The name Jesse King may not ring a bell to many, but when one mentions Buga, it will surely make a meaning. Buga, an indigene of Edo State, in this interview with SEYI SOKOYA, opened up on why he has been keeping a low profile, his muasic career and other issues. Excerpts:

Not much has been heard from you for a while. What has been happening to Buga and his career?
That’s not very correct because Buga has always been around and his music career has never stopped moving. I have been able to set a mark since I started music. My works are speaking for me. My songs are evergreen. Having said that, I have been out of the country conducting researches on a project called EKO/BENIN Connexion. I have collated the results. Recently, at the Muson Centre in Lagos, dignitaries from all walks of life gathered at the launch of my new discovery entitled: Eko/Benin Connexion. It was witnessed by people who appreciate originality. It is one of the ways we are using to give back to our roots and that is the major reason I have been away for sometime.

What actually brought about this idea?
I love culture. I am trying to educate the youth who are not well informed about their roots. This research has kept me on my toes. I thank God that it really worked out the way I planned. I have been able to set a new record through this project.

Does that also stop you from releasing albums too?
No, I don’t rush myself to do things. If you rush in, you  will rush out,. I have a schedule time for releasing any album. I release album every two years. I like to take my time very well so that I will come up with something unique and special.

How do you want to make up for your long absence, considering the new trend in the music industry that does not seem to favour anyone whose songs are not heard often?
I have not left the industry. My works are speaking for me and my fans still appreciate my music. The point is that we grow  and learn every day on one’s job. Buga used to have a dream and the dream is just beginning to unfold. I am coming with another dimension this time.The Buga brand will remain forever because it has a connection with culture and tradition. As you said, the industry is evolving every day and everybody wants put food on his table, but we don’t have to deceive ourselves; if you are a good musician, you will always be relevant and your songs will be evergreen. This is what I am doing right now and before you can achieve that, you need to do a lot of researches. It is high time we revived our cultural values. This is why I have made a lot of efforts to infuse culture into my music so that today’s generation will not mix things up. I want to tell the world that my staying away is not to abandon my fans or my music; I stayed away so as to come out with a unique concept.

What prompted the idea of your long dangling cap?
It is a way of showcasing my culture. I can’t deny the fact that there is richness in our culture and I am always excited to showcase this richness anywhere I go. It has become my style and people love it.

What are your immediate plans for your comeback?
Presently, I am  working on a new single which will be released anytime from now. It is not to praise anybody, but to pass an important message to the world. Of course, my fans should also expect a new dimension of entertainment.

What is the concept behind Buga?
The name came from my popular album. When you have a hit album, people will describe you by that name irrespective of how it sounds. I am Jesse King Adedayo. The Buga is the title of my album.

But the name literally implies pride?
Pride in what context? What I meant by that is being confident in yourself. If you don’t have confidence in yourself you cannot use the word buga. You should be able to take hold of yourself in whatever you want to do in life. You must remain focused and never give room for distractions.

Can you shed more light on your name Jesse King?
Jesse is a biblical name. Jesse was David’s father. I came from a clergy home. My father is a pastor at Christ Apostolic Church (CAC). It has been wonderful bearing Jesse. I added king to it because of the royalty, but my real name is Omokagbor. I am from Edo State, but a lot of people don’t know. I deliberately didn’t reveal my state of origin for sometime. A lot of people don’t know I am not Yoruba. The usual street language we use against ourselves: ‘Ewo omo yibo yen’ is uncalled for. It is high time we got things st raight. We are all from Oduduwa.

What really  spurred your passion for Lagos State which also made you to canvass for the metropolitan city?
I wonder why people say Lagos is a no man’s land. That sounds crazy to me. Lagos has a history. The Aworis are the original owners of Lagos, but people don’t understand that. The first king of Lagos, Oba Addo was from Benin, a prince from Benin. He was sent to Lagos by the Oba of Benin centuries back. Today, we have the Obanikoros, who are also from Benin. Ido market is a Benin name. We need to understand all these things and put ourselves together. Yes, I am proud to be a Benin, but let’s see ourselves as brothers and relate with one another. It would be so nice if we know and appreciate our roots.

What brought about the track you did for Ibadan?
Unknown to many people, Ibadan was my first home. I was born at Eleyele in Ibadan. I did the track as a sign of respect for the capital city, because that’s where I started my life. In fact, I feel at home whenever I step my feet on the city of Ibadan.

And the motorcycle track too…
It is a socio-cultural song that was released to caution okada riders. Their activities were becoming a major source of worry for Lagosians then, and thank God that Governor Fashola has restricted their movements. A lot of people have been killed as a result of their recklessness. I was so bothered about the number of people that have suffered different casualties because of these bikers, so that was why I came up with the idea of ‘Ma rora olokada, ma se jeje’.

But you were said to have been approached by the state government for the song, how true is this?
That’s not true. Nobody paid me a dime for that song. I did not collect any money from the Lagos State government to compose the song. Lagos State has witnessed a remarkable transformation over the years and I am happy about it but that does not mean I was paid to do the song. We used to have Oluwole LMTS back then, it was always like a small London then while growing up.Today, Lagos State government changed it to BRT. Lagosians are happy about the introduction of BRT buses. That was why I took it upon myself to enlighten, caution people on safety, cleanliness and growth of the environment. If the government decides to appreciate me tomorrow for what I did, I will be happy.

Are you saying you were not appreciated by the state government for what you did?
I won’t say I was not appreciated. I was appreciated. I love what the party is doing for the state. I was part of the governor’s campaign team during election. I did the same in my state and other parts of the country too. This is how I can support the government.

Will it be wrong to say that you are also eyeing a political position come 2015?
No, politics to me is to support the positive thinkers. This is my environment and everybody in Lagos State can see what is happening. I am a very blunt person, I don’t praise-sing. I am glad to be part of this struggle. Lagos State has really witnessed a turnaround. I am not paid to canvass for the state, but I can see it because I have been around the state. I am not a politician. I only appreciate those who affect people’s lives positively. Mind you, if he is doing otherwise I won’t move close to him no matter what the party is saying. This is not even about the party now, it has to do with personality and it is the people who make the party. But if you say I am part of the people, I don’t have any problem with that. When you have good persons then you would have a clear understanding of how the family is good. Edo State is doing well too; it is actually connecting. I think it is a challenge to all political office holders, especially the governors.

What inspires you most?
My inspiration comes from God. I am a very naughty person; I take things so funny. I get a lot of inspiration from my interaction with an average man on the street. I am not the type that goes to eateries. To me, where you can get best out of life is the abetes. This is the only place you will experience lots of fun and drama.  It may surprise you to hear that I still eat roadside rice. I feel so connected with my enviroment and locality if when I eat by the roadside.

Why do people keep saying that Buga is not what he claims to be? I mean, some people have said you are not real…
Since I am real, I wouldn’t want to listen to them. I don’t have a response to that. Meanwhile, the future will tell whether I am fake or not, but I want to say to the world that this is the real me and I have no reason to live a fake life. Emi omo Ita Faaji; I rolled tyres with my peers on the street. I was not born in Banana Island; I was born and bred in Eleyele, Ibadan. So, how or why would I live a fake life? This is me, aside the Buga thing, I have my world.

How do you unwind?
I don’t have a dull moment. As a professional musician, you don’t have to add to people’s problems with your music, but to douse their tension with good music. I always say no to depression, frustrations and any form of challenges people are facing. That was why I sang ‘Faaji’. I want to make people think out of their problems. That tells you that I love to enjoy life at its fullest. I love relaxation a lot.

You have really added weight, is  that a sign of good living?
(Laughs….) I thank God for my life, it is a sign of good living as you have said. Meanwhile, I am a replica of my dad and at the same time, I think as an African, as we grow, we cannot be the same way we were last year. My stature has nothing to do with my glowing career. I have not reached my peak. I still have a lot of projects I am working on. I want my fans to look forward to more  from my stable.

How successful are you as a musician?
I am comfortable and successful because I still have the power to sing. The most important moments in my life are when people walk up to me to appreciate my works.

What is that exceptional thing your mum did to you that made you dedicate the track ‘Mummy o, wa pe laye’ to her?
Your mum should be precious to you. My parents, especially my mum, are so precious to me. I believe mothers go to the extreme for their children. I can’t quantify how much I love my mother. I think all mothers deserve that honour.  My mother is so caring despite all the pranks I played while growing up. The song is not for my mum alone, but for every mother in this world. Go to market places, you will see them under the sun; not for what they will put in their mouths, but for the survival of their children. That was why I dedicated the song to them.

What lesson have you learnt that made you preach on the need to take life easy?
I think everybody should take life easy because the society today is so hot, no electricity, good road and security. At the end of the day, you begin to give yourself problems., Before you know it, you are out of this world.

Did your crying out through your music stop them from snatching your wife?
(Laughs…) ‘Iyawo’; that song was part of the creativity and getting informed in the street. The song was derived from the happenings on the street. Nothing like that in real life happened to me. No one dares that.

What about your concubine, Jennifer?
Concubine? I don’t have any. It was my better half that I was referring to as Jennifer. She is everything to me; in fact, she is the major factor of my success story today. She is my first fan and critic of my music before it is released. She’s my Jennifer.


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