“I think Nigerians are the future of music. I remember back then in 2005/2006, some deejays refused to play any afrobeat song.
Fast forward today, any deejay without an afrobeat song on their playlist is definitely not a deejay’ these are the words of Charles Onyeabor, the son of legendary Nigerian musician William Onyeabor.
Charles is an Europe based Nigerian born singer who clearly followed the footsteps of his legendary father, William Onyeabor. Over time, Charles has honed his skills and has grown to be a popular name in Italy where he’s currently based.
Describing the acceptance of his music outside the shores of Nigeria, he said ‘Its been pretty amazing. But on the other hand, it’s nothing new to me because my father’s music was and is still accepted outside the shores of Nigeria and seeing my music being accepted makes me definitely grateful’.
It’s difficult not to notice the influence of his dad’s sound in his music and Charles didn’t mince words about it saying, ‘my dad influenced my music a lot. He’s my role model. I’ve seen him write, compose and deliver his music. I’ve never been that close to anyone to see how their music is done. I wouldn’t want to have a specific genre of music. I just want to deliver my music the way I feel it. If my musical inspiration comes in reggae, I will deliver it in reggae to my fans. If it comes in blues, RnB, Afrobeat, that’s the way I will deliver it. music is music’ he said.
With Italy as one of the most hit countries during the Covid-19 pandemic, Charles explained that ‘the pandemic was a blessing in disguise’. He went on to say ‘the lockdown gave me an opportunity to reflect on my life. That was when I realised I should be doing what I love. I love music, so I decided to give it a try after 18 years. I started my career during this COVID 19 season. I don’t know what it’s like without the pandemic. But my manager would always say, “the pandemic is the only reason you haven’t gone on a Live show”. I guess COVID has its disadvantages in every business”.