By KEHINDE AJOSE
Even though she clinched the third runner-up prize at the debut edition of MTN’s Project Fame West Africa, the Rivers State-born Annette Cookey can be compared to an eagle ready to soar to greatness.
Armed with a strong vocal range, sex appeal,an irresistible performance aptitude, Annette is ready to take on the world. In this interview, she opens up on why she has been out of circulation, the craziest thing a fan has ever done for her, among other issues. Excerpts:
My music journey has been quite interesting, not necessarily a smooth ride. There has been bumps here and there. My journey has made me to meet a lot of people and made contacts.
I have been able to have an idea of what the industry is about. My music journey has been good, not perfect .I am not where I want to be but like you said, it’s a journey. I am still finding my way to where I want to be.
The Nigerian music industry is growing. It’s getting better, we just need more structure in place, we need to fight piracy and so many other things. If the percentage of piracy is 80 and we reduce it to 20 percent, then we know that we are gradually eradicating it.
We are doing so well, we have all kinds of talented people .We are forging ahead and we can do better with a little more structure in place. I think we should also learn from our brothers in other African countries like South Africa. I think they are doing well too. With a little more work, we will get there. I love Nigerian Music.
The truth is that when I decided to go for MTN’s Project Fame West Africa, I was a child. I didn’t really know what I was delving into. I knew I love to sing, I really didn’t know what it entailed, what was expected of me after the competition. I never left music as many thought.
I only had to go back to the drawing board, had to ask myself once more, if I just want to be that girl in the choir who just sings to God, or the girl who sings in the bar? Or the girl who wants to pursue a career in music? I wanted to be convinced this is what I should be doing with my life and I had to buckle up to be sure this is what I should be doing. I took time off to get myself prepared after Project Fame West Africa.
The craziest thing a fan ever did to me was to pay my flight ticket. He saw me at the airport and said: “Oh, I watched you on Project Fame West Africa’ and this incident happened three years after the show. Another crazy experience was when I sang a happy birthday song to my friend’s mum.
It was her mum’s birthday and I sang the happy birthday song to her via a voice note. When her mum heard it, she requested to see me in person. As soon as I got to the front door of their house and she saw me, she started crying. She actually thought the voice note wasn’t for real, that her daughter probably got someone to sing. It was an awkward moment for me. I felt like an angel.
I don’t really have a specific for men really. Some will say they prefer White men, someone will say they prefer dark-skinned men, the list goes on. I want a man who will love the totality of who I am,who is God-fearing, he should have good looks, and should be able to sing at least a little. I think I should add tall and he should be romantic, make me laugh regardless of his colour or his race.
If you watched me on Project Fame West Africa, you will realize that I really love music. Music is me and I am music. We cannot be separated. If I were in a relationship where my partner wants me to quit doing music, I don’t think I will be able to cope with that. I think I will leave. A partner who won’t support what I do is not worth the while. Any union, friendship, or whatever can’t separate me from my music. I want to believe I am stuck here for as long as I live.
Why will I go nude in a music video? Except it’s for charity or to save lives. I don’t think I can go nude. It’s a ‘No’! for me. I can show a little flesh here and there but go nude? It has to be for a just cause, may be for saving lives.