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What I love most about being a singer – Samm Henshaw

 

 

Iniabasi Samuel Henshaw, popularly known as Samm Henshaw, a British-Nigerian singer, and songwriter renowned for infusing retro soul and gospel influences into his uplifting R&B sound.

In this interview with Sunday Sun, the son of a reverend, took us through his journey into the music industry,Ā  biggest influence, future collaborations and lots more.

Excerpts;

 

 

 

You recently released your first Afrobeats song, Jumoke, how was the reception?

The response has been great. I’m competing with an older version of myself and this is a new version of me, I’m setting a standard here for myself. So it’s like, this is the new thing. As far as I’m concerned, the song has done great! The fact that I am new to this, and something I never done before. There isnā€™t much to compare to, you can’t compare it to someone else, because they’ve done their part to get to that place. As long I have made something and people are responding to it will always be a good thing.

 

 

 

What do you like the most about being a singer?

I like the creative part the most. I like that my life revolves around creativity. I like the fact that I can wake up in the morning and if I have an idea, I have the ability or the opportunity to bring that idea to life. I love the fact that I get to do that. I never would have imagined that I could do this as a kid. As a kid, oneā€™s life revolves around oneā€™s imaginations, and things like this. To now be an adult and be able to still do that and get paid for it is amazing.

 

 

How prepared are you toĀ  penetrate the fiercely competitive Afrobeats space?

Not trying to compete. I don’t have anything to compete against. It seems exhausting. I always want to do something because I’m excited by something or because I just want to try it. And it doesn’t mean that I may not get in my head sometimes about it. But my aim isn’t to compete. My aim isn’t to take on any thing that anyone else is doing. My aim is to just like, make something that I like and enjoy, and I have a feeling someone else might like and enjoy. Get on with it.

 

You had mentioned that your late uncle was the inspiration behind the track, Jumoke, what would you say to him now about the song’s success?

I’d say he was right.

 

 

 

What next should fans expect from you?

We’re just getting ready to drop a music project this new year, which is going to be fun. I’m really excited about this.

 

 

Tell us more about yourself and how your journey into the music industry began?

I started fairly late in the music industry. I didn’t officially get signed until I was 21. And so it’s I’m still getting used to the fact that like it’s the new norm for me that like I get to you know, be a musician for a living I get to like be a creative for a living.

 

 

Do you think your family background also influenced your career choice?

Yeah, they did. They still do. I go to them for everything.

 

 

What are some of the challenges faced, making music in South London?

I can’t imagine it’s much different to making it in Compton or wherever.

 

Despite the challenges what keeps you going?

I think God. I try to keep that consistent relationship with him. I think prayer, family and friends also. I also think having a good community is really important and just wanting to do it. Then again, bills would want to make you keep going!

 

 

Do you think that one day you will relocate to Nigeria to face music fully?

I love Nigeria! But my last trip in 2021, I just couldn’t deal with the chaos of Lagos. I used to love Legos when I was a kid because it was fun, vibrant, adventurous which it still is. But like obviously, more chaotic! I would rather spend time in Abuja, or I want to go Calabar now. I could definitely do longer trips in Naij but I donā€™t think I could Lagos too much.

 

 

Any collaboration in the pipeline?

Yeah, got a few.

 

 

 

Who are the top three music stars you would love to collaborate with and why?

Iā€™ve got a few but I will say top three are:

LittleSimzā€“sheā€™s bomb, Obongjayar andĀ  OliviaDean

 

 

Who’s your biggest influence in the music industry?

Iā€™m not sure right now, finding it really hard to keep up with everything but -probably Donald Glover, just because I think he’s sick that he like does it all. And yeah, or Tyler the Creator. I like the artists that are creatives. I like the artists are more than just the Art. They’re not just musicians. I really, really mess with those with those types of people.

 

What else do you do asides music?

Film Stuff. I am quite involved in my church and stuff with them. I help a lot with the worship team and the choir and all of that to a food bank, as well.

 

 

How do you feel about the acclaim and the global dominance that Nigeriaā€™s afrobeats is enjoying?

I love it.Ā  I am always rooting for anyone Nigerian. I think it is innate in us. Whenever one hears that a Nigerian has done something great, we feel proud of the person. It is the patriotism. I am always rooting for us.

But, I am way more excited when I see Nigerian artistes doing music genres that are not afrobeats. Nigerians are always exceptional and dominate in many areas. Outside of afrobeats, watching Nigerians and other Africans doing well means a lot to me.

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