13th June, 2021
By Taiwo Okanlawon
Nigerian singer and songwriter cum politician, Olubankole Wellington popularly known as Banky W, has revealed some pasts about Grammy-winning Nigerian musician, Ayo Balogun also known as Wizkid.
According to the EME label boss, the lack of money for studio session made Wizkid develop into a very fast songwriter.
Banky disclosed this while featuring on Wizkid’s ‘A Superstar Made In Lagos’ docuseries.
“Wiz, for a long time in his life, wasn’t fortunate enough to afford studio time. So he was a studio rat,” Banky said.
“Wiz would just go to any studio where they would let him hang out all day. He would hope for the end of the day, waiting for engineers or the producers to just take pity on him and say, ‘oya, come record for 15-30 minutes’.
“All day, he would work on hooks and melodies while coming up with things in case he was given an opportunity to jump on the mic for a few minutes. He didn’t have time to be thinking about what to write at that moment.
“And so that became his process. Now, one of the fastest songwriters that I’ve ever encountered in my life. He’ll sit and listen to the music. He’ll start freestyling a melody that will become a song the whole world will want to sing.”
Banky W’s Empire Mates Entertainment (EME) signed Wizkid in 2009. Two years later, he released the ‘Superstar’ album, followed by his self-titled LP ‘Ayo’ in September 2014.
On Wizkid’s choice of stage name, Banky W added: “I think that’s where the name Wiz comes from and why it’s so appropriate. It’s a genius-level melody creation at the spur of the moment. I don’t think there are a lot of people.
“I’ve written a lot of songs but I take time. He has this ability honed from years of not being able to afford studio time. He would say, ‘man, when they give me 15 minutes, I got to be ready to go and knock it out of the park.’
“I think that says something to everybody. No matter where you are just developing yourself, develop your skills. Work on it, get better. Get so good that once you are given an opportunity to knock it out, you score a home run.”
Watch full docuseries here: