While Tolani Fatilewa is still counting his blessings of 2017, he is courting the future with a bigger hope. Among other moves, he released another single at the tail end of the year while he got a major recognition from an international brand.
He recalls, “I released my second single of 2017 in December and it’s titled Live. The response has been great and I would like to thank everyone that has supported me so far. Bigger and better things are coming this year.”
He describes 2017 as the best one for him as a musician. “It presented a lot of opportunities as well as learning experiences. Earlier, I was shocked when an iconic studio responsible for recording albums for The Beatles and Fela selected my song in the final five of their contest. Being the only African artiste in the final five of the Abbey Road Studios and Metro U. K. contest was major for me. There were a couple of major ones, though. I must add that the development and performing at the Fela shrine during the 2017 Felabration were the biggest for me.”
Tolani adds that music has been good to him generally, although he may not have recorded the big hits of his dream. It has, for instance, afforded him the opportunity to move around.
“I grew up in Abuja, so I’ve got the chance to travel a lot more around Nigeria and experience different Nigerian cultures because of music and I’m extra thankful for that. It’s been a journey so far, an exciting one,” he says.
He cannot wait for the industry to get what he calls proper structures – the absence of which, he says, is a big challenge. According to him, there are too many unknowns when approaching the business end of music.
For 2018, he intends to make more music, more videos and get what he calls special collaborations that he cannot speak about yet. According to him, his passion for afro is still strong but this seems to be getting diversified.
He says when asked if he is still sticking to ‘original’ afro, “l won’t put it like that. I’m a new school afro beat artiste. I infuse elements of traditional afro beat music with a lot of other genres of music like hip-hop, house, soca etc. Afro beat is the key ingredient in everything I do, but not the only ingredient.”
Tolani hopes to meet afro big players such as Femi and Seun beyond the casual encounters they have had.
Does he desire collaboration with them? “They are both legends and it’s something I would love to happen someday in my career,” he notes.