“Anyone can be a superstar, but artists must learn to have the culture of their job, not just being an artist singing with no general knowledge of how things go in showbiz. We are made free and we shall remain free.”
Check out the interview with S. Sponji Living exclusively on Skilly Magazine Online.
SKILLY: Tell us where this all began. What is your history in the music scene?
S.S.L: Born in 1979 in Ivory Coast, I composed my 1st track at 12 years old but my professional music career as S. Sponji Living started in 2006 with a maxi single with Hotzic France. In 2007, I released my first album LA CITE D’OR ( the golden city ) with Reapandsow music Inc. in San Francisco. In 2009, I joined the US Florida label dPulse Recordings with my 2nd release SUN OF JUSTICE that was picked up by the New York Island DefJam sub-label SUNSET RECORDS. Then, I focused my life more on my label CBRLABELS from 2010 to 2017 and wrote 10 popular books. Finally, I intend right now to explode worldwide with latest 12 tracks jewel “L’IMPERIAL” that signs my return to music for a long. My music is a reggae opened to all types of music, especially hip-hop , pop and jazz sung in English, French Spanish and so on with various themes including politics, love, social life, globalization. I am said to be the new king of Reggae and I will assume that position worldwide.
What are the best ways to promote yourself as an artist? Any tips you can give us?
I see 5 ways to succeed in showbiz today. First, video promotion through good TV stations can build a great exposure. Then radio airplay but not limited to a small area can lead to success. Also, note that a good press release agency can manage a huge campaign for any artist. We can also evoke online video promoters and social media to fully complete things.
What do you ultimately want to become in your career?
As said to be actually King of reggae, my ultimate target is to reestablish engaging music at top of the worldwide debate in showbiz. And this goal is divided into 3 parts. First I am here to create a total separation between Reggae music and Rastafarism that is a philosophy I respect but I do not share. Secondly, I largely opened Reggae to all genres and in various languages and left aside the old testimony to write the new one. Finally, I want to bring a new image if you see what I mean. I want to lead our children to the idea that one can succeed even taking the hard direction and a great man is he who fears not to go to the opposite side while everybody takes a common path. And for those reasons, I will remain an indie artist so as never to lose my liberty of opinion.
What is the hardest thing about being in the music business?
I think the hardest thing in showbiz is how to create a separation between private life and public one for this severe disease destroys many artists lives ,and as a novelist I heard many examples of artists who end their life badly for they forgot that showbiz glory always come to an end but the family is what can help, not going to suicide when you are at the sunset of your career.
What is it like in your city? What is the music scene like, and how is it like living there overall?
In my city, Abidjan people are fond of various music like Hip Hop reggae and African sounds. And life is good here. People of the world, do not think that Africa is only an area of starvation, illness, and poverty as your channels often present it to you. Some of us like me are proud to work and going at the top of life. I myself am from Africa, I conquer the world, and will never settle down elsewhere. Recently, the African head of states was offended when president Trump supposedly said that we are the shit of life. Yes, what he said, if it is true, is condemnable. But I myself the vanity of a rich man is not a problem for me. What teachings can we take from that? We must take our destiny in hands and stop begging money like children. We are like a man who is thirsty while he is sitting near a river and I Imperial Sponji living will put an end to such situation with music as a nuclear weapon.
What are some of the advice you can give and share with other artists who are still trying to come up?
Well, artists, please clearly define why you come to music before going far and when you are popular, never forget that it is for a short time, so invest your money elsewhere before the sunset otherwise you will regret.
What is the best thing that’s ever happened in your career?
The best thing about my career is to have understood that I should create my own label to manage my career before being smashed by the system. And now I am respected worldwide and I am glad to live.
What is your inspiration?
Any good and live music.From U ROY to KENNY G. From FELA KUTI to ADELE NO LIMIT even the birds singing.
Do you feel anyone can be successful now in today’s world of music?
Yes anyone can be a superstar, but artists must learn to have the culture of their job not just being an artist signing with no general knowledge of how things go in showbiz. We are made free and we shall remain free if you see what I mean.