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Godwin Ibe, popularly known as G-Feelings, is one of Nigeria’s best life band performers. The dance hall gospel musician, in this interview with SOLOMON NDA-ISAIAH and ANTHONY ADA ABRAHAM, says his singles, High Tension and Born Again are enjoying massive rave.
You just dropped some singles in preparation for your forthcoming album. Can you hint us on the tracks and the date you will be releasing the album?
The album has 12 tracks and some of them are High Tension, Born Again and others. One of the singles called Born Again is enjoying massive airwaves on radio station. They are also on YouTube and other social media platforms. I am working towards dropping some videos for some of the singles to enable me push out the album.
I listened to one of the tracks called High Tension and I am very interested in the part where you said change before you go down. What do you mean by that?
If you listened to that track properly, you will understand that the track is trying to lay emphasis on negativity that is upon humanity which is so much in my own country. The track also looked at the continued corruption going on in the country and lack of respect by those in authority to do the right thing. There is a place I said it is because you have small money you think you can talk to someone anyhow? Change before you go down. Like the continued fight against Boko Haram, killing people for no reason and others.
What are you doing differently?
I want you to know that I’m already an impact to the world. What I want you to understand is that if I can get massive support from sponsors, I will shine the light to the whole world. A light on the hill can never be hidden. I am an impact already shinning the light. Because if you see me you will know that I am carrying the power of Christ. When the light shines, darkness always gives way. I am not struggling to live a lifestyle. I am a lifestyle. I always try to tell people the right way to go through music.
Bob Marley was seen as the greatest reggae artiste on earth. After his death came Lucky Dube, an African reggae artiste. But after his demise, it seems reggae music is fading out slowly. As a reggae artiste…what are you and your colleagues in the industry doing to revive the genre of music in Nigeria?
That’s a nice one… Reggae music can never die or fade away. Because the current crop of musicians are people that sing rubbish. With their kind of music, you cannot sit with your children and listen to it. I use to tell people that music without message is nonsense. All what they are singing today are trash. You continue listening to one beat and rhythm. Music is not supposed to be that way. Music is highly spiritual. Other things shall pass away only music shall remain. It is highly regarded by God. Reggae music is a genre of music that when you listened to, you will be redefined. It is prophetic; which is the essence of music is anyway to tell prophecies. The world is so wide. Why most people have decided to listen to such contemporary music is because some of the musicians have decided to live a negative lifestyle which is not healthy for the society we live in today. I am known as G-Feelings, God-Feelings, Great Feelings. G-feelings expression. I cannot express negative feelings or bad expression. I express a God feeling which is my purpose on earth is. All my songs will take you to your root. There is a track of mine I titled Origin…I said ‘tell me your origin…I want to know your origin, because some are good while others are bad.’ So whenever you come in contact with any of my songs, you will understand why I am called G-Feelings. You will enjoy it spiritually, you will enjoy it mentally and you will enjoy it lyrically. That is why many a times you see people still fall back to old school songs. People call me a ragamuffin gospel artiste because I tried to weave all in one that’s why I’m a musician. There is a difference between a legend and superstar. Legend live their lives while superstars practice to be perfect. A legend never dies and that is why I live my life. The late Bob Marley said that he started music not because of money but because of the struggle. But what happened later, money started coming in after doing that which he wanted to do. And his generations unborn will continue to enjoy it. So that is the kind of life I want to live. If you see me . you would know that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.
Buttressing the question I asked earlier, reggae music in Nigeria is going down. What are you people in the industry doing to bring back that glory?
I believe that it has to do with one mind and one person. Even the kingdom of God is not after crown but a pure soul. The journey of a thousand mile starts with a step. There must be one man that will stand out, even before the advent of reggae music there was a man called Bob Marley. There were other doing it before him, but when he came in, he turned it around and immediately became an international star. I am not after the growth of hip hop and other genre taken after the music scene, but I believe that when you listen to my songs you will understand what I’m saying. There are people who want to join the multitude. But when my song is getting that needed attention, more would want to come into reggae music. You can see many artistes today are recording just because they want fame and fortune and not because of the passion they have for it. But I am not after that. I call my kind of music gospel dance hall.
Tell us about your beginning in the music industry and experience with Benson and Hedges?
It was a fun-packed layed at Benson and Hedges in 1999 and represented Abuja in Kano where I won the musical challenge. I represented the entire north in Lagos and also won at Tafawa Balewa Square. After that, my musical career wasn’t going as expected so I came back to Abuja. Since then I have been playing live band. I have my own band called G-Feelings Expression. I have played in different hotels, like the Transcorp Hilton, and many others. I am currently playing for Top View hotel. I have earlier played with Bayajida band of Daura for some years which I led as main vocalist. That was how I started playing the keyboard for some years then I came down, played with Saint Peters band in Kano, and played during Benson and Hedges Mega Music Shake Down in Kano.
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