Lady Evang Toyin Leshi was born and raised in CAC (Christ Apostolic Church). Having started her musical journey in Primary School, she joined a choral group and cultural group through which she participated in different competitions like MAMSER and others. In this interview, she speaks on meeting Christ, joining the Church choir and her latest album.
The Journey into the Gospel Music Scene
The Journey actually started in 1995 when the Holy Spirit led me to join the Choir of CAC Olorunsogo in Mushin, Lagos. That was where I discovered my gift of singing. I learnt how to sing hymns, classical music and contemporary music. But God has already given me the Prophecy of this ministry in a revival service but I just didn’t know when it will be fulfilled or how. But I give God the glory for the journey so far. He will see me through.
How challenging was it at the beginning?
My first album “Oba Ara” was very tough for me because I didn’t really know fully what I was doing. I just knew that God was leading me to do this.
How did you get people to believe in what you do?
Getting people to believe in what I do took years of ministering on different platforms and programs and people start complimenting my ministration as regards how it impacted their lives. But the truth is that you have to believe in yourself first otherwise no one will believe in what you carry. You must have confidence in what God has put inside of you and know who you are in Christ that is when you can convince other people.
What was that career-defining moment for you?
I work a full-time job so I’ve been pushing back from doing an album for many years. That career-defining moment was the first day I stepped into the studio to record my first album “Oba Ara” it was a defining moment for me that finally, I’m stepping into my purpose.
You’ve been spreading the gospel through your music for many years, what has kept you going for so long?
I’ve been doing music now 27 years. At first, it was a struggle. So much money involved with no sponsor. I spoke to many people and organisations maybe they can promote this vision God laid in my heart and I got turned down. They were like ‘oh you know Nigerians won’t buy your music if they don’t know you’. I got all kinds of setbacks. Some of them even promised to help me and took my money but it was all lies. I had to decide after the second album that even if nobody supports me as long as God help me and provide for me, I will continue. The experience made me more resolute and determined than ever before. Sometimes in life, you just have to go all alone. Just believe in yourself.
Your most recent project, ‘My Love Song’ is another solid gospel album dropped in the midst of a pandemic. Was that intentional?
My most recent project ‘My Love Song’ is actually so far the most challenging album for me. I got the inspiration at the peak of the pandemic when everything was going really crazy and the whole world was locked down. The Holy Spirit gave me the whole album in one month. The songs were just trooping in. Thank God for His grace.
How was the process of making this album?
The very day I was supposed to go to the studio, I got really sick and I was tempted to cancel my session but the Holy Spirit told me to go ahead that He will strengthen me. I was amazed by the strength that came over me when I got to the studio. I gave it my best shot and sang every track with all my heart. I knew this album was going to be different because there was so much opposition putting it together. My engineer told me the tracks are too much. This could make three albums, but I followed my heart. God gave these songs to me to bless my generation I’m not holding on to them. I believe He will give me more songs. I’m not thinking about making money I’m more interested in blessings lives through my music.
You have released videos for all 10 songs on this album. How were you able to achieve that?
I decided to do the videos for all the songs at the same time because time is essential in whatever you do. It cost me so much money to put the videos together. If you watch the videos you will see that I just freely expressed myself. Whatever you see in those videos were my genuine expression of my joy and gratitude to God for making my dreams come true.
What’s the most personal song to you on this album?
I love all the tracks in the album, but the ones that really resonate with me were Baba Ose Oluwa, Modupe Fun Ore Re Ninu Aye Mi. I looked back and in spite of all I’ve been through in life. I am still standing. It is worth celebrating. All glory be to God.
The most challenging video you on this album?
All the videos were challenging. I danced and danced till I had no strength left in me but it was fun. I loved every part of the shooting for all the videos.
Where can people access the videos and the Toyin Leshi brand?
The Videos are available on my YouTube Channel (Toyin Leshi) and you can download the music on all music blogs as well as social media platforms. I can be reached on social media via – @ToyinLeshi on Twitter and Instagram while Facebook is Toyin Leshi Ministries or via email – [email protected]
What next for Evang. Toyin Leshi? Any project for 2021?
I’m taking a few days’ break but I’ll be coming back with a bang. Just be on the lookout.
Final word to fans.
To my fans, I appreciate your loyalty. All I can tell you is that believe in God and believe in yourself. Don’t let anyone discourage you from pursuing your dreams. God made it happen for me. He will do it for you. God bless you all.