After featuring in the Zain musical challenge and the ‘Do Me’ hit track by the duo P Square, Iruobe Aituaje Ebele popularly known as Waje has continued to step up her game. When Sunkanmi Ogunade met her recently in Ibadan, she debunked rumours of her having a queer sexual life. Excerpts:
You featured in the song Do Me with the mighty duo P-Square. Was that your major break?
To be very candid, the Do Me track was my debut. It sold me out beyond my imagination. I got noticed by almost everybody. After the hit track, I decided to put more effort into my music. I had done something for them before; I remixed the Omoge Mi track as Bobo Mi. They listened to it, liked it and featured it in their album.
Do you still have a cordial relationship with them?
Yes, I do. We still relate well.
What is the next step for Waje?
The next big thing is my album. I am currently working extra hard to compose good songs and make my fans happier. The whole big thing has to do with a lot of things. My album, musical videos, my person, etc. I am working on my album and I hope to drop it as soon as I get what I want.
How many years have you spent in the music industry?
I have spent like six years but I give glory to God today. When, I started many years back, it was rough and harsh. You would sing all your hearts out and somebody somewhere would just rubbish your handwork. I felt like backing out but today, it’s a different ball game. People have come to love what we do, even if they don’t agree with your idea, they would encourage and even pray for you.
Do you have any record label right now?
I don’t have any record label but that would end pretty soon. I am on the edge of striking a deal. When it happens, you would be the first to know. I promise
One of your videos ‘Can I be your girl?’ is enjoying massive air play. How do you feel?
I feel very great. We spent a lot of money on that video. It was not shot here; we travelled out of the country to shoot the video. The expenses were just too high, but we had no choice. You also have to make enough appearances and the rest of them. It’s just on the high side.
So, if I may ask, where do you get all the funds for your projects?
To be very sincere with you, my brother, God has been so good to me in that aspect. All my life, I have been fortunate, if I may say. I have not had any reason to regret venturing into music. I have been doing some money fetching engagements and it has been colourful. I get assistance from people very well. For that video, it was just God oo. I work for my funds and God provides the rest.
Have you faced sexual harassment in the industry?
I don’t think that is new. It has been and will continue to be. It is even part of the make-up of the industry. When I hear cases of sexual harassment especially in this industry, I am not always surprised. I have never been harassed in any way before. I have been very lucky.
Are you saying it is very normal?
Yes, I am principally saying that it is normal and it is also part of the challenges we face.
Are you in a relationship?
I don’t have any reason for you! I am single and I am not searching. I want to face my music totally.
Are you a lesbian?
Lol! No. I am not o! I am not a lesbian. Okay, let me say this. If I commence a relationship tomorrow, I will inform you.
Hope you know time is going?
What do you mean by time is going? I am not searching abeg. Don’t put words into my mouth (laughs).
What is the full meaning of WAJE?
Words Aren’t Just Enough.
In Can I be your girl?, are you referring to anybody?
No, it was a song I wrote naturally. I am not referring to anybody o. In this part of the world, you don’t beg to date the opposite sex, and they do that. I am not referring it to anybody o!
How was growing up like?
It was fun. It was like any other average person’s. I learnt a lot while growing up. It was fun for me and I still have those colourful memories. Growing up was peaceful and interesting.
As an artiste, how do you rate the Nigerian music industry?
The Nigerians music industry is fast growing because we are definitely not what we used to be five years back. I strongly believe that the fast growth of the music scene will make the industry very big in a few years to come and talented acts will have a platform to showcase themselves.
What should your fans expect from you soon?
They should expect more good music, the message being as positive as ever. I promise them that I will not disappoint. Finally, I thank all my fans, for their love, care and steadfastness all these years. I love them all.