Koo Ntakra, the winner of the 2nd edition of the MTN Hit-Maker reality show says before his current rise to fame, there were days he could not afford to pay for studio sessions.
His real name is Isaac Afuffo; a very softspoken 20-year-old young man. He told Nii Ogbamey Tetteh of NEWS-ONE about the tough life he experienced before entering the MTN Hit-Maker show and the aftermath of his winning.
When did you start rap music?
I started rapping back in my Junior Secondary School days. That was when I realised that God has given me a talent so I had to work on it. In Koforidua, rapping was more of street a battle style and stuff like that and that is where I started. This is where God has gotten me so far.
How has the journey been so far?
The journey has been bittersweet; somehow good, somehow bad. Initially, though I had the talent, there was no money in the house to push me. I could not even afford my studio session fees. I had to save up my pocket money to pay for my studio sessions. We were in the hassle till by God’s grace the MTN Hit-Maker came through for me and I emerged winner.
Why did you choose your style of rap?
Since music is a gift God gave me, I see it as a medium to portray a message. I want to use my music to send out certain messages such that anyone who listens to my songs will get my message. I want to use my music and style of rap to deliver a message to the world.
Do you look up to anybody in this industry?
In Ghana, I just want to be myself – Koo Ntakra – so that in future those who will come after me will look up to me.
What were you doing before MTN Hit-Maker?
Well, I had completed Senior High School and even though there was no money my mother was struggling to raise something small so I could further my education. That was then Hit-Maker happened. I’m sure God had already planned everything.
Would you further your education someday?
Right now I’m doing fulltime music but that doesn’t mean that I have stopped schooling. I will further my education because even in music, education will enlighten you to boost your performance.
How was the Hit-Maker experience?
The Hit-Maker is a reality show that has really helped me a lot. It gave me exposure to certain things in life such as stage performance and how to overcome shyness.
When I qualified in Koforidua for the show, little did I know that I had to come to Accra for another audition. There were over 800 people and the funny thing is I was the kid among the lot. Initially I was scared because if some of the grownups among the 800 were being eliminated, how much more me. But God glorified himself at the end of the audition and I was part of the 12 contestants for the event.
How is your new management treating you?
Since I signed on to Bullhaus, it has been so good for me. It is now possible for me to meet all of the people I thought I will never meet in my underground days. Today, I’m able to sit and chat with some very prominent people in society. As we speak now, I’m working with the likes of Yaa Pono and Guru on my upcoming album. Bullhaus has helped me.
Privately, what is Koo Ntakra doing now?
Now I have realised that my fans are waiting for Koo Ntakra and I’m not sleeping at all, I’m working really hard. Recently I released video titled ‘Hit-Maker Live’ on YouTube. It talks about my experience in the MTN Hit-Maker house. I’m also working on my album which features so many artistes in Ghana. Probably by the end of July or August, it should be ready.
Who motivates you to do what you do?
First of all God is my main source of motivation. My mother, Felicia Kumah, also motivates and encourages me as well and basically most of my friends. There are some people who believed in me and helped me in their own way.
What plan do you have to stay relevant in the industry?
I am the kind of person who promises and fulfils. I remember I promised my fans that I will win the Hit-Maker and with the help of God it happened. Once I have taken singing as a career, I will not kid around at all. With the help of God, I will stay relevant in the game till I die.
How are you handling the fame that comes with the music?
The fame is here but nothing has changed with me. I’m still the same Koo Ntakra. I’m still the humble guy my friends and family used to know.
What is your opinion of beefing in the industry?
For me beefing in music is not important. Some people have taken the business aspect of it but I am looking at the offensive message which is conveyed through these dissing songs. I believe that if you do not know how to sing, you won’t make it to heaven because in heaven we are told that we will be doing a lot of singing there to praise God. For me, I focus on the message and I don’t think I will ever do any dissing song.
By Nii Ogbamey Tetteh (email: [email protected] , Twitter: @ogbameytetteh)
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