Young Entertainers and Music Awards aims to be an annual event focused on recognizing the hard work of upcoming artistes, youth promoters and other stakeholders to a thriving entertainment industry. I spoke to the brainchild behind the awards and here’s what he has to say.
Leyizzle FAB: Introduce yourself
Kunle: My names are Osein Olakunle Ibrahim, I am a native of Lagos state (Epe to be precise), a final year student of the department of Banking & Finance, University of Lagos (UNILAG). I am from a polygamous home, first of five children. I am a Muslim, though I don’t go to mosque as supposed. CEO Payback INC Media, my hubbies are talking, laughing, meeting people, playing football, table tennis, listening to music and reading.
Leyizzle FAB: What’s this Award called and what is it all about?
Kunle: The award is called “Young Entertainers & Music Awards” (Y.E.M Awards 2012) an award set aside to focus on Upcoming/Promising artistes so as to help their music grow and also showcase them to limelight; we have 10 categories to start with in the upcoming artistes’ categories. We are not just putting attention to the upcoming artiste categories alone, we also have a general category where we are going to identify some categories that most of our known artistes have not noticed but it’s something that we should appreciate because it’s not easy to come about it. Like the category “Music Intro of the Year” a lot of artistes do skits before they start the normal lyrics and some don’t, so I feel this kind of category should be appreciated because it take a lot of reasoning before someone can come up with a skit, and same thing goes to other categories in the general category.
Leyizzle FAB: Why did you decide to organize this event?
Kunle: Looking at Nigeria’s music industry and the entertainment industry at large, it has gained a lot of attention, where everyone wants to do entertainment or music, thanks to social networking sites (Twitter, Facebook, MySpace etc) because these has really helped the youth get busy even while in school and what you need most is a medium of passing your messages to the audience/mass, which is what these social networks has done. Coming back to the question, there are various artistes out there that are very good and talented but to my own understanding, there is no platform to showcase them, and some that were even showcased still felt they were not appreciated because of competitions from top artistes. I did a research on how the internationals do help their upcoming artistes apart from reality music shows, and I discovered that they also have award for upcoming/promising artiste. The award as we see it, it’s not just to help the winners but also the nominees because for you to get nomination(s), then you deserve to be known or heard.
Leyizzle FAB: What do you intend to achieve by hosting these awards
Kunle: I want to reduce the competition between the established artistes and the upcoming ones and also create an avenue to unify them. Talking to some upcoming artistes about what they feel about the established artistes and their responses are not encouraging, some would say they are afraid to do a hook with them because they won’t give them attention, some says the bills they charge are too much and some are like the “forming” is too much, but to me I think it’s just the way a normal person would feel since you don’t have the advantage to meet someone. So I think we should be able to reduce the fear in them and then they can have advantage to meet with their preferred artistes.
Leyizzle FAB: What are your aspirations?
Kunle: I want to be on the Forbes list as one of “Africa’s Most Influential Celebrities”, I know my God will take me there.
Leyizzle FAB: How much support have you gotten from the music industry at the moment?
Kunle: Well it has been encouraging, because most musical blogs has shown interest in helping out too and also some known artistes too but we still need more of their support. We are set to endorse the Award and this is going to be done by one of our known artistes (I no wan mention name for now) but I just want to thank them all.
Leyizzle FAB: How much have you achieved so far?
Kunle: My greatest achievement is starting Payback INC Media, we had an event in October tagged “Back to Champions League”. The show was created to celebrate the beginning of champions’ league season and bringing all football lovers under one umbrella. That event was the birth of PAYBACK INC Media though the turnover was not as expected but we still give thanks to God. I am still growing in the industry and learning is the major thing for now, so I am still seeking support from the general public so that this project will turn out good and successful as planned.
Leyizzle FAB: What has been the reaction of the public to your show?
Kunle: The reaction of the public to this particular project is a surprise to me, the crowd and followers I have gained on twitter is shocking. The first broadcast I did on BBM I included my pin, and I can’t believe the number of request I got. Also, the email I created for more information about the award has been bombarded with series of songs, till date, I have received more than 50 songs from various upcoming artistes in the country and I think this is a good turnout but still a lot of work to do and I am sure the good Lord will strengthen me.
Leyizzle FAB: What impact do you expect to make on the industry?
Kunle: A positive impact where there would be a mutual relationship between everyone in the industry, I am very sure its possible.
Leyizzle FAB: Tell me one thing you wished was different in the music and entertainment industry.
Kunle: I wish the “word” piracy didn’t exist and I also wish government will get involved in the industry, I believe this would make things go the right way.
Leyizzle FAB: What advice do you have for upcoming entrepreneurs like yourself?
Kunle: I would just advice them to do a proper research on what they want to do before they finally invest in it and in any of their investments, they should try to make positive impact to the society.
Leyizzle FAB: Describe yourself in one FAB. Word