HOTTEST JAM OF SEPTEMBER: Supa Stah - "In The Mood" (Ft Mamiska)"

Thursday, March 24, 2011

INTERVIEW: IBK Tha Spaceship Boi, Maverick, Martian or both?

Ibukun Emuwawon Kevin, better known as IBK Tha SpaceShip Boi, is veritably one of Naija gospel's uber-fast rising phenomena, effortlessly blending and connecting a vast range of seemingly unconnectable music genres together using Hip Hop/Rap/Neo-soul as his weaving thread. Ingenious in his unique interpretations of the artform, incorporating shades of spoken word, african chants and a dint of 'outer space' martian chatter, IBK has undeniably created a unique sonic habitat for himself. Catch the rest of his chat with Club X eMagazine (CXeM) below...

CXeM: Explain who IBK is. In some detail please

IBK: Okay ( with an ‘american radio presenter’ accent), IBK is a lover of God and a purpose driven man. Number one priority on his to do list is to FULFILL DESTINY (in capital letters). He is a young man with lots of energy and chooses to be unique in his expression of self, unpredictable, born and raised in the city of Warri in 1982 (yup! I know, he doesn't look his age right?) to Mr. and Mrs. Emuwawon. He fell in love with music before his hands were able to access the plane were the record player was placed on the shelf. IBK is an ordinary man with an extraordinary God powering his system; he loves poetry and appreciates art, he is drawn to creatives that choose to do conventional things unconventionally. I could go on and on, but I guess I’ve given you pretty much a sneak peek into my biography (big smile)!

CXeM:How did the ‘Spaceship Boi’ attachment come about?

IBK: (Laughs) Spaceship Boi! That was Bez teasing in the studio during a show-reel session with an artist I was to do work with. He goes "Ah? This one? He is spaceship, spaceship boy, his chords are..." (and then he makes a funny hand gesture to illustrate the chords that power my music) ! Funny boy.  So ‘Spaceship Boi’ stands for unconventional, not ordinary, unusual, different, unique, separate, fresh, creative, and yes…OUTTA THIS WORLD!!!! I keep getting these flash backs that make me realize that I am not originally from Earth (Winks)!

CXeM:The first time we heard your music at CXeM, we were blown away by it. How would you describe your music? What was it born out of?

IBK: I brand my music "Spaceship Music", which is a blend of hip hop, soul, jazz, and craziness (i.e. all sorts of unusual sounds!). I like doing the unexpected as long as it brings a sweet flavor in the mix. yup! That is the summary of Spaceship Music for you!

"Life & Music"

CXeM: Who are your musical influences, and why?

IBK: Hmmm! Lots of them! From A Tribe Called Quest to De La Soul, J-Dilla to Kirk Franklin, Fred Hammond, Take Six and much more. They are all exceptional in their interpretations.

CXeM: What is the music making process like for you?

IBK: [Clears throat] First off, I light candles. Second I go to the poultry to check if the chicken laid a golden egg. Third, I fry the egg and eat it with carrots! [Breaks out in laughter]. Nah, just on joke mode! Seriously, it’s all about thinking up an idea and trying to make it happen with the available samples (sounds) you have. It’s not as easy as some people say it is. It could be days, months, years or even twenty minutes! Inspired to make reality the musical thoughts in your mind is the fuel to making it happen. For example, my album, scheduled to be released in the middle of the year was ready in my mind since 2009! 

CXeM: What is it about Covenant University that keeps producing all these amazing fresh talent like you, Bez, Dr Frabs, Simi, Rico Slim, etc?

IBK: Yeah! Covenant University sure had and has loads of talent! Others you didn’t mention are Sledge, Emmsong, Ovie, a great praise and worship leader Segun Balogun, and loads more on the way! We had the opportunity to express ourselves during our variety night shows plus I personally got inspired during our entrepreneurial development classes. In addition, four to five years of experience with a man like Bishop David Oyedepo, and you can't afford to think like or be a regular mind! His words inspired by God were seeds in our hearts which are now visible fruits.

CXeM:What are you up to, as in your recent, upcoming projects?

IBK: Currently, I’m making music with Casey (winner of Glo Naija Sings 2010) he a cool dude, plus other artistes. Plus, you know I am working on my own album as well, being produced by the greatest the world has ever seen- IBK Tha Spaceship Boi)! (big smile). It’s really hard and time management is key when you have lots of creative jobs to pull off!

CXeM: As one of the brains behind the popular event ‘TARUWA’, what did you guys set out to achieve with the event? What are your challenges?

IBK: Brains? Hmm…I wouldn’t say I am one of the ‘brains’ behind the event per se, I’ll have to give way more credit to Lidia and Bez and all the folks involved, I just help out the best I can. Taruwa is a blessing to singers/poets/writers that want to share their work with a ready to listen audience. It’s a great avenue to be seen and discovered by big shots in the industry. So as much as possible, it was put together so people that do a nine to five have a place to chill, listen to poetry and songs as they unwind. It’s also a great opportunity to network and meet peeps in the music biz.

CXeM: How did you get into rapping and music production?

IBK: Rapping started for me after my brother and I saw Kriss Kross on TV doing their thing in the 90's.
That sparked up something in us, and being that he was my older brother and role model, I did and found interest in whatever he took interest in. For music production, you know how it is that you have this great idea that you can’t really articulate to the understanding of any other person? That’s sort of what got me into making music plus loads of other reasons

"Dem Na Worry Me"

CXeM: What, in your opinion distinguishes, or should distinguish a gospel act from everyone else?

IBK: It’s your life style, period! You are a product of what you dwell on. You ain’t gotta holler from the mountain tops that "I am a gospel artist ohh!!!!!!!" Just like a lion roars, it doesn’t bleat like sheep do, God's own are a reflection of Him.

CXeM: Why did you opt for the gospel route?
 IBK: Like I said, I am here for a purpose. my name is Ibukun, it means "blessing" I believe your purpose is encapsulated in your name. I have being sent to be a blessing and add value to my world and with the gift er music giving to me by God, that's exactly what I'mma do!

CXeM: How did you get to be so up close with Cobhams?

IBK: Haha! the coby story! ok, this is what happened; got his number from a friend, you know her, Simi! she was doin work with him at the time. we spoke via telephone, set up a meet, I was still in school then, got him to here some music I had made at the time and he was blown away like you guys were wen you first heard a spaceship record. Lol! we shared and discovered we were on the same path and it would be beneficial for our growth as creatives! and boom! he said I should come around often to the studio back then wen it was in Issac John street in Ikeja. ever since then we have developed a relationship thats like fam type you dig? (smile)

CXeM:What are we to expect from your upcoming album?

IBK: expect the ordinary being twisted, expect music that breaks musical laws in a musical form, expect to be inspired and blessed, expect an international sound, expect to know your Maker up close and personal.

CXeM: How did the single ‘Tongues’ come about? What sort of acclaim has it gotten overall?

IBK: Tongues!!! Yay!!! I love that record yo!!! Like it wasn't mine. Well, I was in my brother's crib with my laptop, midi controller, and Nidapiano. I had earlier heard a Nina Simone record sampled in the movie Thomas Crown Affair. Remember when he was walking to the art museum? Yeah! With claps and piano. I thought that was great! Anyways, I told Nidapiano to help play what I heard in my head at the time, and I built the music round the laid out piano line he put down, and that's how it happened, you know. Plus for those of you who don't know, the initial part of the vocals that sounds like the Spanish type? This is speaking in tongues, thus the name of the record.

"Tongues" was the single of the month on SoundCity BLAST magazine plus we just made the video so we hope people get to see it and here more about God's word in the record and get inspired to be what God wants them to be.


CXeM: What informed the decision to go all animated for the video of “Tongues”

IBK: Going anime for the video was inevitable, especially at the stage I am in. If it were to be a real human flesh type people moving on your TV screen type of video, the budget to make it happen would be on the high side, may be too high for current status if you know what I mean. plus the idea Toro, Psalmurai and I came up with just had to be done animation style. I got to see ToRo's work on the internet and...boom! I loved it. He just had to be the one to make it happen and even under an extremely low budget, he delivered! by the way, ToRo is also a Covenant University product! Hahahaha!

IBK - "Tongues" Video

CXeM: What are the current industry trends that you are happy about, and those you are not so happy about?

IBK: I’m happy we are having more music entrepreneurs plus people that are out to make good music.
The industry is still trying to take form, and like most things in the country is, the business of music is still doggy dog, but it’s a phase.

CXeM: Are you presently signed to any label? Or you are going it independent?

IBK: Currently indie. I go by the production name MARTIANSHIP and in search of an international backbone that I can affiliate with.

CXeM: Amongst some of your tracks are remakes of two songs by two very distinct international acts, Mary Mary’s “Something Big” and Drake’s “Say Something”. Why did u pick those tracks? What was the motivation behind those remakes?

IBK: For "Say Something", my intent was to make people know regardless of what ever profane speech that might have been in the original version, it's a song with a message relevant to people in relationships. I thought it wise to help shine light on the different things that make a relationship work and the fact that its all about giving. So I simply wanted to educate via the record I put out and the topic was perfect.

"Say Something" Remake

For the Mary Mary record, I heard it one time and fell in love with it, though I thought there was something missing in the record to lay emphasis on what "I gat to do big", i.e. ME! So I hooked up my remix to help make people focus more on our calling and what we've got to do. Hope it hit the nail on the head.

"Something Big"Remake

CXeM: What is the title of your upcoming album?

I've got two titles in mind based on the compilation; "Side Walks and Latency" and "I Come In Peace". It might be a blend of both (big smile).

CXeM: Recently, popular hip hop acts, RoofTop MCs appeared on air and declared that they were no longer to be regarded as ‘gospel’ artists, and they were simply to be seen as Christians making music that ‘cuts across’; they’ve made similar allusions in the past as well. What is your take on this? How do you think this will affect the next generation of Nigerian gospel hip hoppers?

IBK: Everybody has a clear cut vision God has given em, we all need to discover why we are here and our purpose in life, and walk in that purpose. jesus didnt look at another individual to live his life, he sought the face of the Father on a regular. thats whats up.

CXeM: Outside of the music realm, what else are you involved in? As in other creative projects, charities, courses, anything else of note, etc

IBK: Yeah, just got involved with my friend Nikky Laoye on her "Angel 4 Life" project, I am currently director of the C.A.M.P voice training school.

CXeM: Word of advice for upcoming Nigerian acts?

IBK: My advice is simply be! There is only one you on the planet. Discover your purpose in God and walk that path because He is more than willing to lead. be good, be strong, be true, the courageous, be positive. After all, it’s a process. Be bold, be entrepreneurial, be capacity development driven, be prayerful, be hopeful, be a leader, be a servant, be the light, be a teacher, know the business and your craft.


Connect with IBK via Social Media
Twitter: http://www.twitter,com/spaceshipboi
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