PASUMA UNVEILS SECRET BEHIND SUCCESS
Alabi Pasuma Wonder is a Fuji musician that needs no introduction. From a humble beginning in Mushin area of Lagos State. Pasuma, who many see as just one of them, has over the years carved a niche for himself in the industry. With deft and strategic alliances, he seems to be moving away from the fixated picture most Nigerians see of Fuji musicians. He has repeatedly worked with Hip-Hop artistes to create what may as well be defined as Hip-Hop Fuji. At an encounter, he spoke with TOPE OLUKOLE on his infusion of Hip-Hop into Fuji Music, his meteoric rise from 'Mushin boy' to a mega star and the controversy in the Fuji music genre. Excerpts:
How would you describe your growth and evolution as a musician?
It has been nice and a major transformation. A Mushin boy becoming a superstar! It's like a dream come through, though I am still looking forward to the best because I am still very far from my peak. I am still waiting for my time to come. But I must confess that I really thank God for what he has done for me, that little boy from Mushin becoming this today is God's doing.
You talk and sing a lot about your mother but you are always too silent about your father, why?
I love my mother so much and I sing and talk about her all the time because she singlehandedly brought me up from the age of six. I talk about my father at times but he does not like that because he's highly educated. He was the General Manager of NCR, Apapa before he retired. He hates publicity. But for my mother, I will sing and talk about her. She is the golden mother of the world. No one compares to her.
Pasuma does not look like a trouble maker, but there is always violence at your shows, why is this so?
It is not just at my shows alone, it is applicable to every other Fuji musician. It happens like that. We have to change this and we are already working towards that. We are getting it right and we are trying to educate our fans that you don't need to break bottles before you can be somebody in life. If you come to my shows now, you will see big boys and big babes, intellectuals, university students and respectable professionals having fun. Things are indeed changing.
You seem to have taken Fuji music to a level where Hip-Hop artistes have accepted it and infusing it into their music. How were you able to do this?
I have always wanted to change the face of Fuji music. People see Fuji music as 'gutter music' that meant for only area boys and artisans but we are trying to let people know that Fuji music of today is different from what they used to know. That was why I decided to infuse Hip-Hop into Fuji. Now, it is common in most places to hear Hip-Hop artistes using Fuji to sing their songs. I thank God that I am the first Fuji musician to do that while others are following.
Why do people call you African Puff Daddy?
I love P. Daddy so much and I enjoy his songs. That's why I adopted the name African Puff Daddy.
What would you say influenced your kind of music?
If you can recall, we people like Alhaji Sikiru Ayinde Barrister, Alhaji Kollington Ayinla, KI de Ultimate and Adewale Ayuba singing Fuji music. We discovered that they were doing well with Fuji music and we decided to join them .
Choosing Fuji music as a career is something I have not regretted in any way. If you are going to mention the names of Fuji musicians in Nigeria today, you cannot mention five before you call that of Alabi Pasuma Wonder. So, I thank God for the decision I made several years back, it has been so great.