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Thursday, 9 May 2013

"Love is simply Respect" - Waje

Aituaje Iruobe, a.k.a, Waje, in this exclusive interview
with SHOWTIME CELEBRITY, talks about her music
career, journey to fame, and taking us personnal in the

What are we expecting tomorrow (last Wednesday)?

Well, you should be expecting the release of the album,
that's all. It has been a long time project. A lot of my
fans have been asking to know when the album will
drop, and I'd promised to give them unlimited dose of
my music outside of the singles I have done in the past.
How many singles have you dropped so far?
If we start from my solo, it would be about six singles.
They included "Not the Way, I Wish, Orumeni, solo"
among others. But my album is not a compilation of all
these singles anyway.
How long did it take you to put the album together?
Well, it took a while. It is not a matter of months. We
have been working on this project for the past three

What were some of the
challenges you faced
while working on the

For me, my career is
not necessarily based
on how many albums I
have dropped or not.
Dropping an album is
not my goal. It's just
about using the right
materials, shooting the
right video and so
many other things .
What I feel is very
challenging to me has
nothing to do with the album. It is towards my career as
a whole.
Not just thinking about coming out with a new album, it
is all about rebranding myself. I perform with a live
band and I have a 10-man band. So, I am thinking
about making sure that my band and my brand are
Another major challenge I have is working with different
people and trying to fix their time to accommodate my
own time. Working with people like producers, director,
executive producers and lots of people has also been so

How long has the 10-man band been in existence?

We have been together for about a year and half now.

To your album, what is the title of your new album?

Simple, it is self titled "Words aren't just enough", "Waje"

Why did you choose that as the title?

It is my world. All I've done is try to tell people what has
happened in my life, the challenges I've faced, my high
and low times. So, in other to make it interesting, I just
added some melody to those stories. That's where I got
the acronym, Waje from ,which means, "Words aren't
just enough". And I think for my first album, it would be
great to have it as the title.
The album talks about love, fun, caution, some level of
things. And you know, there are different aspects of it,
heartbreak, all these are the things that I go through in
my head. It is either my experience or other people's
experience. Just that the album is a way of welcoming
you to my own school of thought and how I do my own

Even before the album launch, your name has been a
household name. What is the secret?

I am still not satisfied. What I would say is that, it is all
by the special grace of God. There are limits to what we
can do and God takes control of other things. I was not
one of those people that knew what to do before coming
into the industry. When I joined the industry, I didn't
know anything about publicity, manager and other
things. The only thing I knew was how to sing.
I didn't even know that people have agents that book
them for shows. For me, it is while sojourning in the
industry that I learnt many things. I think that was what
has helped the brand to grow, knowing fully well that I
want to do this and I am willing to overcome all the
boundaries. Also, I have a higher goal for myself.

You said you have not reached the turning point. What
are the strategies you 've put in place to get to the peak
of your career?

Those strategies, I can't disclose to you because it is my
thing. If I tell you my strategy, it would be like someone
revealing her secrets to another person. So, that is my
own secret.

Which of your tracks do you think brought you into

I think the one that really projected me very well was "So
Inspired" which featured Mona. This is because, after
that song, I was nominated for Channel O award. I think
that was the song that brought me into limelight and it
is known across Africa.
I won a couple of international awards that year because
of the song. I won Defa award in UK. But to me, if you
ask me, I would say that everything has just been a
gradual process. Each track I drop opens a different
door for me. As So Inspired won me an award, so also
is I wish.

Did you actually pose nude in your new song, I Wish ?

I don't think there is anything about the song. I know
most people have not taken time to watch the song and
they are criticizing it based on what others are saying.
They cannot speak from their own angle. Well, I am an
artiste and the work of an artiste is to be able to express
his or herself the way the script is.
So, I have decided to express myself the way the script
says I should. The song is about heartbreak and when
you are singing it, you have to connect with what is in
the script. There is no need singing about heart break
and at the same time smiling. It's acting. It's like when
you want to make a painting, you must make it look real.
One of the reasons why Monalisa's painting has been
one of the most celebrated paintings in the world is that,
one side of her face was smiling while the other side was
not. She was almost sad and at the same time, you
could see the emotion on her face. That is what being an
artiste is all about. It is about being able to express
yourself and not lying about your feelings.

Aside music and acting which you recently started, what
else do you do?

Tunnel was the first big movie I featured in. I have been
on the set of "Heaven's Help" which is a new movie we
are shooting at the moment. You have one of the best
casts you can think of. It was directed by ex-BBA
winner, Katung. I also run a private school with my
mother. These are some of the things I do when I'm not
in the studio.

What is your driving force?

My driving force is my passion for what I do. Aside music
being my passion, it is also like a hubby to me. I am also
driven to make ends meet. For me, it is now a business
because the Bible says that anything we lay our hands
on shall prosper. I intend to prosper in it. When I say
prospering, it is not only about music but also being able
to encourage young people.
I want young people to know that if Waje can win a
Grammy award, then, they can also do the same. I want
them to know that if I can conquer Africa then, they can
do the same. I know how many people that have
approached me and said that they are inspired by my
music. I don't think I am worthy of all those praises but
at the end of the day, it makes you feel good that you are
doing something good that people want and appreciates.

Are you signed to Chocolate City?

No, I am not signed to Chocolate City. I wonder why
everybody is saying that I am signed to ChocolateCity. I
am signed to Waje Music Entertainment.
Are you telling us that you have a record label?

When did you unveil the label?

I have been running the label for a long time now.
Artistes have been coming to me to sign them on but I
keep telling them that we sign artistes on a partnership
level. So, it has always been there.

You still liiok stunning without make up. What's the

The secret of my beauty is God. I am the careless type, I
don't know how to act what I am not. You can ask my
hair stylist, Elijah. He has been making my hair for a very
long time now. I really don't know the secret.
Sometimes, I wear bogus clothes to Shoprite.
Sometimes, I wear shots and T-shirt to go and buy bolle.
That's the kind of person I am. I feel that whatever we
are doing, we should be able to defend it. I don't want a
situation where tomorrow, I would be a shadow of
myself because of the way I have lived . I want a
situation that people wouldn't be surprised if they heard
I walked down the street to buy something.

What is you favourite fashion item?

I am a very free person. I wear easy clothes like T-
shirts and jeans, knicker, sandals, slippers. As you can
see how I'm dressed to the saloon- my short with T-shirt
and slippers; that's my kind of dressing.

How do you feel being a single mother?

When people ask the question how you feel as a single
mother, I don't get it because, regardless of the
circumstances, a child is a blessing from God. Whether
the father is there or not, a child is a huge blessing from
God. So, when people ask how I feel as a single mother,

I don't understand. Do they expect me to regret being a
single mother?

Don't you regret why you had a child out of wedlock?
I don't regret my past. If you see my daughter, you know
I have no regrets. This is the picture of my daughter(she
scrolls through her phone to the point where her
daughter is). Is she not worthy to be called my
daughter? In fact, if you have this type of daughter, you
would feel so fantastic to be a single mother.

What was your growing up like?

My growing up was fun. I am the first child and the first
daughter in my family. I was a tom boy as a child. I was
born with a plastic spoon, nothing like silver spoon. My
parents got divorced when I was young. So, I had a few
challenges just like any other growing child. I had issues
of youthful exuberance and my mother working so hard
to provide for her kids. These were some of the
challenges I faced as a child.

Did you have music in mind while growing up?

I had in mind that I wanted to do music but I didn't see
the picture.

How did music begin for you?

I started early enough. I was singing in my church choir.
I would gate crash and go to sing at shows. And
whenever I heard that my school is doing something, I
would go and plead with them to allow me perform. And
at the end of every show, they would give me transport
fare to go home. Those were the kind of things I did.

Why are you still single?

Well, I am not God. I don't know why, but in case you
know, please, let me know. I don't think anybody knows
why he/she is still single if they are really single.

Who is your kind of man?

A God fearing man is my kind of man. A man that has
respect for himself. Because, if you don't respect
yourself, you can't respect another person. I always tell
people that you can't confidently say you can fall in love
if you don't love yourself. Because if you love yourself,
you would respect yourself, you would work hard to
provide the things you need for yourself.

Is there any man in your life now?

No, there is nobody.

What's your take on female artistes going for married

I am not a moral teacher, so, it is not my business.
Everybody has their purpose for coming to life and we
are entitled to our actions. God would not be judging us
the same time, we will be judged separately.

Is it true that you are dating M.I?

No, I am not. We are just good friends, nothing more
than that.

How do you handle your male fans?

I find it very surprising because I don't even see the
male fans. To be honest with you, I really don't know the
answer to this question. The only thing is that I know
where to draw the line.

What does love mean to you?

To me, love is simply respect. I know why I am always
hammering on respect. I know that this our generation,
we have lost respect for ourselves.

Have you been sexually harassed before?

Not directly. I haven't been sexually harassed before.