Mavin Records’ up and coming act, Korede Bello, tells Saturday Beats how he got into music and met popular producer and Mavin Boss, Don Jazzy The social media was set on fire last weekend with Korede Bello’s ‘wink.’ What is it really about? I would be lying to you if I tell you that I know how it came about because prior to when we released the Dorobucci video, I did not even know that I winked in that video. But after the video was released, people were just commenting on my social media pages that they liked the wink. Everybody was just talking about the wink; the buzz was not really on the video, so I decided to tell my fans to put up pictures of them doing the wink and alert me. We learnt you said bead of sweat got into your eyes in the video and that was how the wink came about… I never said anything like that. If you listen to my part of the song, you would see that the wink actually complemented my part in the video. How did you get involved in music? I started doing music a long time ago. It started when I began to listen to the songs played by my parents; they both loved different kinds of songs. My father loved the indigenous music while my mother preferred foreign music. I grew up listening to diverse music. I fell in love with music and it fell in love with me. When I was in school, I was always participating in social activities and I represented my school in acting, dancing and singing competitions. My first music group was formed with my friend when we were in primary six and that is when I wrote my first song. When I got into secondary school, it was a different ball game. I was better and more into writing songs. But when I got into senior secondary school, I began professional music by recording my songs in the studio. My first official single was recorded when I was in secondary school. Didn’t your parents have any problem with you getting involved with music at such an early stage? I love my parents so much and one of the reasons is because they support me and would put their money on anything that would make me happy. I came from them and they love music and they love supporting their son. The only issue they had, especially my mother, was my staying out late. She did not want me to stay out late because as of then, I was just writing my West African Senior Secondary School Certificate Examination. I had to be in the studio mostly at night and my mother did not really like that. Aside from that, everything was fine. My father got me my first guitar and paid for my first studio session. They are big fans of Korede Bello right now. Did your involvement with music while in school affect your studies in any way? One of the reasons my parents supported my music while I was in school was because I was not a dullard. I was doing very well in school and it motivated them to support me. My teachers were also very supportive because I was doing very well in school. At the end of the day, you cannot really serve two masters, it would have been better if I was concentrating on music or my studies solely but I thank God for giving me the grace to balance both and still come out great. Why is it that you sing love songs? One of the reasons I want people to really know Korede Bello is because I haven’t put out so many songs and the ones I have are love songs. I want to put out more songs for people to know that I am beyond love songs. My brand preaches love and it could come in songs you can dance to, highlife and different formats not just the conventional slow rhythm. How did you meet Don Jazzy? Since I started music, God has always been good to me. I can never be grateful enough. One thing I have learnt is that once it is time, it is actually your time. The truth is that if anyone had told me about two years ago that I would be working with Don Jazzy, I would say it was a big lie but I am working with him right now. A lot of people listen to your songs but it takes just one person to make a difference in your life. That is what happened to me because I released a song called ‘Forever’ and people loved it but it just took one person to listen to it and introduced me to Don Jazzy’s friends. They were also astounded by what they heard and they introduced me to Don Jazzy. He invited us to the studio with my manager, Casmir, we recorded some songs and that was it. When he heard my song, he said that I was a mega super star and that was it. How did you feel the first day you met him? Before I met him, I was a big fan of Don Jazzy. I would not lie. I did not feel like a mega super star, I felt really humbled. I was reserved on the outside but on the inside, I kept telling myself that it was really Don Jazzy. At the end of the day, when there is music in the air, everybody is on the same level. I always feel inspired when I am with Don Jazzy, there is no dull moment. When we are having our musical session, everything becomes a sound to us. From the way we laugh to the sound of a knock on the door, anything can be used to make music. What has the experience been working with him? Working with Don Jazzy has been a blessing and a learning process for me both in my career and as a person. There is a difference between doing perfect music and doing the kind of music everybody loves. That is where Don Jazzy is different from other producers, it is a great gift to be good at what you do and be able to communicate it to people. Working with Don Jazzy has taught me that it is not entirely about your talent but it has to do with packaging and marketing the right thing. Aside from the prestige of being on Don Jazzy’s record label, what other benefits have you got? It brought me a lot of things, things that a mega superstar can be recognised with, money, cars and a house. That is why we are called mega super stars. So many up and coming artistes usually leave the record label that brought them up once they are established and popular. Do we see you dumping Mavin one day? That is a very interesting question that I have been trying to avoid lately. Personally, I think that God would take you to wherever He wants to regardless of the label. I don’t know what was in the mind of people that have done such a thing so I cannot tell why they did what they did but I can speak for myself and I believe God would take me to where He wants to take me to no matter where I am. People have the notion that when someone sings about love often, he is a womaniser. Are you a womaniser? I am not a womaniser, I love. I have been loved and I love seeing people who are in love but that does not make me a womaniser. It just makes me a loving person. Are you in a relationship? I am actually in a relationship with my fans that I call Bellovers. I am also in a relationship with God. Do you have a girlfriend? I have no comment on that. Your label mate, Dr. Sid, got married recently, when do you plan to get married? If Don Jazzy is not married, I cannot think about it. If my boss has not got married, why should I be thinking about it? What are you currently working on? I am working on more singles and more songs. I want more people to know who Korede Bello is beyond the musician.