In an exclusive interview with Pulse, Jagaban rapper, Ycee gave an insight into how he almost quit making music.
The rapper who is concluding works on his debut album, 'Ain't Nobody Badder Than (A.N.B.T)' stated that at the early stages of his career, he had almost given up on music.
During his visit, the rapper shared his thoughts on his music, how he almost quit music, the forthcoming album and many more.
On how he almost quit making music.
Ycee's career arc isn't as straightforward as it looks on the outside, the rapper who got signed to Tinny Entertainment in 2012 recounted how he almost quit music at the early stages of his career, ''At some point, I almost quit the music, cause I felt like it wasn't going to work out.''
Ycee talks about almost quitting music
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''I felt like the label was putting a lot on the line for me, cause they were funding the videos and taking care of most of what I was doing, they took care of my first single, which was produced by .
I also worked with at the time and a whole bunch of people, and it felt like a lot of expenses were being incurred and we were not just getting the desired results.
Not that many people knew Ycee or accepted my music at the time, I felt like maybe this just isn't meant to be, so I remember coming to the label and saying to them, I feel like I don't want to do music anymore.
I just wanted to stop and go back to school and that was when i actually realised that a lot of people have actually invested in me, so me coming out to say I just want to quit, when the people that believe in me and are pushing me still have faith, it felt like a selfish decision, so the label decided that I take some time off the music and we see what to do about it afterwards".
On why it took him long to drop his EP, The Firstwave.
Following the success of Jagaban and Omo Alhaji, Ycee's fans were made to wait for two years before he released his debut EP, The Firstwave. During his chat, the rapper explained why;
He said, ''I think during that period, I was bettering my craft and understanding the industry.
There are certain artists that their debut album is their first offering, but I think in Nigeria, you have to amass a following, that will make you putting out an album a profitable thing to do.
The EP was a test project, I touched on almost all genre of sound and I was able to identify which side of Ycee, my core following leaned towards the more''.
Chipping in on the singles vs album debate
There has been a lot of debate about the music industry as it stands favoring the release of singles rather than albums, Ycee also chipped in his thoughts.
''I think not just Nigeria but the world is now based on singles, because the attention span of the listener is quite short, there are so many artists out there, so many songs to listen to.
So if you putting out one song that is a banger, as against a body of work that has hit songs, people would rather listen to that one song, it is a tricky market in the sense that nowadays, everything in the industry is all about numbers.
I feel what the industry is now is a singles market but it is not like people are not listening to albums, I think the album is something that the artist owes to his core fans''.
When asked his thoughts on M.I's YRSFUYL single.
M.I Abaga's 'You Rappers Should Fix Up Your Lives' single caused a stir on the scene when it was released last year and recently won him the Lyricist on the Roll and Best Rap single at Headies 2018, on his initial reaction when he heard the song,
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Ycee smiled, ''I like the beat, a nice beat, I didn't take it personally, I didn't feel offended, the first thing I felt was like, M.I knows whats up, he knows the industry and why most people that had to do what they had to do, did it.
I mean at some point in his career, he also treaded the commercial route, so no shades to his game but I feel like the whole getting killed by the south thing...
See, I don't feel threatened by any rapper in the south or across the world, I can understand where he is coming from, but the times have changed and the industry is a lot different than it was when he first came out.
I think people in Nigeria don't really care for hip-hop in Nigeria, so instead of shots being thrown, I think conversations should be had to know the next move forward.''
So what is the problem with Nigerian hip-hop?
''I feel like there is a disconnect between the Nigerian hip-hop fans and the Nigerian hip-hop artists.
Cos for me, when I put out my first single Condo featuring , I was rapping the way I knew how and some people were saying I was trying to sound too foreign, my English is too much.
But moving forward, you see comparisons with people who rap in English elsewhere like and I am like, I thought the problem was people rapping in too much English, and then you go ahead to compare them to other Africans that are rapping in as much English and even with a foreign accent.
So I understood there and then that it wasn't about making the music relatable, it wasn't about Yoruba or Ibo Rap, I feel like it is the fact that people just don't care for Nigerian rap and I don't know why.
Yes, there are the issues of rappers who now sing, but what about rappers that still rap?
Those that drill into their pocket to push the art-form, you find that they are just being ignored and dismissed, I feel the fans have the biggest role to play, and the sooner people realise they are part of the problem with Nigerian hip-hop, that is when we can make progress.''
He then rounded up the interview by confirming that his album is due before the close of the year and will feature artists like Phyno, Davido, Wizkid and some more.