By EKAETTE BASSEY
Budding singer, Bonaventure Ugbaja Chukwuka, a.k.a Beevlingz, is determined to carve a niche for himself in the competitive Nigerian music industry. Though a seasonal musician, Beevlingz, has made a commitment to always dish out wave making songs.
In this interview, the Delta State-born artiste sheds more light on the ‘small manhood’ accusation by an Instagram model, his plans for the future,the challenges facing young singers in Nigeria among others.
Have you always wanted to be a musician?
I think my father’s love for music inspired my decision to go into music. Growing up, I used to listen to some of my his records. He had an archive of the then popular albums by the likes of Luky Dube, Bob Marley, Ras Kimono, Fela and listening to these legends ignited in me the love for music. My choice of being a musician would definitely make my father proud wherever he is.
How did you discover your talent in music?
I think music found me. I believe my dad’s love for music played a huge role in helping me to discover my talent in music. I remember growing up, I was influenced by popular rappers like 2pac, Biggie among others. I have always believed that someday I would do music.
What inspires your songs?
I draw my inspiration from happenings and situations around me. My first official single ‘Made In China’ was inspired by the life of women who believe in fooling people with their boobs and bums. My second single ‘Come Down’ featuring Ycee was inspired by long distance relationships. My next song ‘Kpokpomi’ was inspired by a controversial call out by a South African model, Abby Zeus that almost shut down my career. My new party single is ‘Osa’.
Can you list out some tracks you have done so far?
In 2018, I dropped ‘Made In China’ which was produced by Puffy Tee. The video was directed by Paul Gambit. This year, just few days after my birthday which was on July 6, I dropped my very first single titled ‘Come Down’ featuring YCee. ‘Come Down’ is currently gaining acceptance both at home and abroad. My next follow up was ‘Kpokpomi’ which was inspired by a little controversy around my career. ‘Kpokpomi’ is massively loved by everyone especially the ladies. Currently, I am in the studio working on my club banger hit ‘OSA’ which has been endorsed by top OAPs and legendary DJ Jimmy Jatt as a potential hit.
Who are those top artistes you would want to have a collaboration with and why?
Featuring Ycee in my songs was based on my love for his music and knowing that having him on the track would give the song a global appealing. And thanks to God it wasn’t a wrong bet. So, my choice of anyone to feature in my songs depends on the kind of song and which artiste has that kind of vibe because you can’t take a Davido vibe to a Burna Boy or a Burna Boy vibe to Davido. Every artiste has a unique sound.
What are the challenges you have faced as a fast rising music star?
I think the biggest challenge as an upcoming act is acceptance and recognition. No one cares about you until you explode. It’s hard getting your song to radio and getting that media acceptance. But thank God for giving me an amazing team and a record label, Southnice Records that has been working hard to put my music and contents out there in spite of the odds. I wake up everyday and my music is playing on top radios, my videos are showing everywhere. Shout out to my team, Southnice, Chiazor Daniel my manager, Tribeman, Mac Don, DJ Mighty and everyone who has been supportive.
Any weird experience?
I think the weirdest experience with a fan would be taking a picture with me randomly without knowing it was me all the while and later when he checked his phone he ran back to ask for a selfie.
You had a seemingly embarrassing call out on Instagram by a model. She called you out alleging you have small manhood, what led to that?
That was one of the toughest moments in my career because it came surprisingly from someone I never expected it from. We have been friends for a few weeks but was asking for more than I was willing to give to her. Thank God it was all handled well by my team. She was seeking attention and that has been what she wanted from me all along. Like the Burna Boy and Steff London kind of public relationship. She got to be featured in my new music video of ‘Kpokpomi’ which was inspired by her troubles.
What’s the best way to take Nigeria music industry to greater heights?
I think that would be consistency and hard work. You have to stay hungry and keep putting out quality music in order to gain more acceptance and global recognition. My plan is to take my music all across the world, featuring top Nigerian artistes and Global artistes from all across the world.
Before getting on stage, do you drink, smoke or have sex?
This is a really deep question. I have never heard that as an artiste that you get offered sex before you climb on stage. As for drink and smoking, I don’t do that in public.
Unforgettable performance and why?
Hmmmm, that would be my very first performance in my home town Ubulu Ukwu in front of my mum.
Looking back, any regrets so far?
Choosing music over everything has been the best decisions I ever made. I have no regrets and if I were to choose again, it would be music.
What is the greatest price you have paid for your career?
The greatest price I have paid for my career would be leaving Port-Harcourt to Lagos without having anywhere to stay.
Tell us more about your background?
I was born and raised in Ubulu Ukwu, in Delta State to a Christian family. My growing up had a positive influence on my life and my music today. I attended Anglican Grammar School after which I proceeded to University of Port-Harcourt, where I studied Business Administration but I had to quit along the way when my love for music was greater and there was no fund to complete my education. I guess all that happened because my dad passed away and my mum couldn’t afford to pay all the bills for the five of us to afford a good education.
Tell us about your childhood days?
My childhood was all about me trying to find my calling. Most of my childhood memories was all about me finding my love for what I was born to do. Being raised from a Christian family means that I was mostly involved in church activities but not like being part of a choir. My dad used to take me with him when he attended events where there would be live band. The memories of him still keeps me going and my passion for must burning strong.