“If everyone is doing something, don’t feel so pressured to go to do it. Find your space and try to be consistent in your space.”
Odunsi is here! Welcome. Now your full name is Odunsi the Engine; most people think that it’s because you mix, master, write and sing, but a little birdie told me you were christened by your classmates. Is that true?
Yeah, so basically it was just like a nickname that some of my friends used to call me, you know those days when we had Blackberry Messenger? I had it as my display name, and, it was also my Twitter handle. I don’t think I had an Instagram yet, but like it was my Twitter handle. When I started making music, it was still my handle so some people started calling me the full thing, and it just stuck from there.
You credit social media as one of the main ways you were able to create a buzz about yourself. What’s the secret to popping online?
There’s no secret [laughs]. I’m telling you!
Is there a formula?
There definitely isn’t a formula because it will always change but I feel like the main thing may just be like consistency and just finding a space. If everyone is doing something, don’t feel so pressured to go to do it. Find your space and try to be consistent in your space. I think that always kind of works for people that do it well enough.
Would you say you switch up your look for live shows? You’ve been quoted as saying you want your live shows to be a “healing experience, does that ever translate to how you dress or is that more around the production?
I think it’s everything. I feel like it’s just my personality, I do things to self-destruct like a lot of times. Just so that, I change. I always change something so I just feel better. I don’t know if it’s a good or a bad thing but that’s what I do. I do it with the music, I do it with my shows, how I dress, my hair cut, just everything. I just decide…this is new. This is what I wanna do for the next month until I get tired of it, and then I switch it again. I do it for me but then, in that process, I guess people kind of relate. [They] also feel inspired to get out of a situation or move on from something. That’s the whole point. You never want to get too attached to anything cos it could be taken from you at any time so it’s just like…is it your hair? Your jewellery? Your clothes? Always be ready to move on from it so you’re not a slave to it or anything in particular.
That’s pretty deep. Let’s lighten the mood, you say that your biggest fan base in the States. Are you planning a show there anytime soon?
Any details you can give us?
Any cities that should look out for an announcement?
New York is gonna be lit [laughs]
Okay, we got something out of you! You dropped two tracks at the same time. What was the inspiration behind giving us Better Days and Wetin Day as a double release?
I liked both songs [laughs]. Everytime I sent both songs to people, the opinions varied so much – it had never been like that for me. I wonder if it’s been like that for anyone at all in their whole life. I wonder if the disparity that I got for the two songs, I wonder if anyone else has experienced that cos it was so interesting to me. How many people like… usually there’s always one that is obviously the one that everyone is like… ’this is the one I like more’ but I couldn’t just get it. I was looking for it. It just always varied every time so I was like I’m just going to put out two songs and see which one people like more, and the same thing happened when I put it out. It was still tight. Still close…
Is there a reason why they are listed on Apple Music as Afro-Pop?
Erm…I mean like they are kinda like Afro Pop songs. In fact, they are Afro-Pop songs if you think about it.
As opposed to Alte which is what you’re known for?
Alte isn’t a genre of music so there isn’t any song that is sonically Alte.
What can we expect from you in the coming months?
I’m working on my new album. That’s all I can say. That’s where I’ve been. Just working on it. Staying low.
Your last project took you two years to create, do we have to wait that long for the next one?
I don’t think you’ll have to wait that long [laughs] I’m experiencing like 5 years with what I’m going through. What I’ve gone through in the last year is worth like three years. The last album I was always inside so I was probably going out like once every two months so maybe that one time I will go out, I’ll have like an experience and see a girl or spoke to someone that give me inspiration but I’ve been through so much this year it’s enough to make two albums.
Wow – well we look forward to the album (or two!) If we want to find out more about your music, where we can find you online?
Follow my social media @odunsitheengine – that’s Twitter and Instagram. I’m not going to be as active as my previous years but if you love me, follow it and you might see some signs for somethings. I always put some little little clues for things that add up later, you know. Everything just always adds up. It’s fun cos I like looking at some of my favourite artists that way too. They just drop things and then we put it together. It’s fun!