Lekan Akande is the son of fuji musician, Obesere. He recently established his record label and tells Saturday Beats about his father, career and love life
What influenced you to float a record label?
I have an event that I host every Friday in Dublin. I had been doing it for about a year when I met Breezy and we started working together. We began doing various shows but I was also collaborating with other promoters in Dublin to bring Nigerian musicians to perform over there. I was mainly into entertainment promotion but I felt it would make more sense to have my label and sign artistes. I really love music but I did not want to become a singer or do something my father has already done. I started my entertainment business in 2013 and when I established my record label, R- Entertainment, I signed two artistes, Beezy and Sajan. We are popular in Dublin but we decided to retrace our steps and come back to our roots to see what we can deliver to the community.
But your father is a popular fuji musician, why didn’t you sign on any fuji artiste?
I did not want to be involved with Fuji music because my great-grand father was a Fuji musician same as my father. Two of my father’s younger brothers are also Fuji musicians. I did not toe that path because I wanted to be different and I always think outside the box. I do not want to repeat the things that my father has done, I want to do things my own way. I think it makes a lot of sense to do things my way with the knowledge I have.
What did your father say when you told him about owning a label?
The first time I told my father, he began to laugh because he thought I was joking. When he saw that I was serious, he asked if I could handle it and I told him that I could. I also told him about my plans of coming to Nigeria and he agreed. When he came to Dublin last year, I sat him down and played some of my artistes’ songs for him to listen and he was impressed. He told me that it made more sense to come to Nigeria because in Dublin, we seem to be producing the same kind of music. We wanted to be out of the box and go global, so we decided to come to Nigeria.
Do you have plans of relocating to Nigeria?
Yes, I am planning to relocate to Nigeria this year, maybe in July.
How about your mother, what was her reaction to your choice of career?
My mother is in Dublin. She is happy with my plans. We started in Dublin and we have done virtually everything there is to be done there. We are part of the top artistes in Dublin and we felt we should do the same thing in Nigeria. My mother is very proud.
When would we witness collaborations between your artistes and your father?
We have a plan like that already and it would become a reality very soon.
Did you ever try to become a singer?
I did try to sing about six years ago. I used to write lyrics also but I stopped because it did not feel right. I tried it but I did not see myself in that light.
Have you ever advised your father to switch from fuji to hip-hop?
Yes I have and he has done some hip-hop songs and featured artistes like Reminisce, Timaya, etc but I think he is going to stick to his fuji music.
Are you ever going to sign your father on your record label?
No, I am not going to sign my father on my record label. He is doing his thing and so am I. He is too big for me to sign on to my record label.
It seems you are trying so hard to be different from your father, why?
I want to carve my own image; I don’t want to follow in my father’s footstep. I don’t want to be under his shadow. I want to do things my own way. Doing things this way would make me feel happy and comfortable. I don’t want to venture into a terrain that I am not familiar with and in the end, I would get confused.
Don’t you think you will make it faster if you ride on your father’s wings?
Yes that is right but I want to do things my way. I want to start from the bottom till I get there. My father has created a name for himself, so it is time for me to do the same thing.
Do you think you have what it takes to contend with established record labels in Nigeria?
I don’t want to judge a book by its cover but I feel that if I and my management should do things the way we planned them, we would get there by God’s grace.
Can you tell us a bit about your educational background?
I am presently studying online marketing in Griffith College, Dublin and I am in my second year. My father really values education and he insists that we all go to school. My father wants me to acquire basic education even if I want to venture into entertainment and he is pleased with my academic level.
How did you feel when you heard your father raped a lady?
I did not believe the story. My whole family did not believe it and we were solidly behind my father. It did not affect our family. I know my father well and I know that he does not womanise. And then again, he has been vindicated by the police. Even before that, we knew that he was innocent. I understand the entertainment industry and know that such things are bound to happen because there would be detractors trying to tarnish his image. The industry is filled with blackmailers that are out to ruin people’s reputation. My relationship with my father has not changed. I envy the feat he has attained in his career and I hope to surpass him.
Is there a lady in your life?
Yes there is a lady in my life. I am not married yet but I would tie the knot very soon.
Is she in Dublin?
Yes she is but she is a Nigerian.
How long have you been dating her?
We have been dating for over four
Is she comfortable with your career?
Yes she is. She has no problem with my job.