US-based Nigerian singer and movie producer, Toba Gold, is living his dream. He grew up in a creative family and desired to be an accomplished artiste. Today, the 40-years-old Afrosoul musician believes things have indeed turned out well for him. He says it all in this interview.
Could you tell us about your growing up?
I was born in Lagos but I am a native of Agbamu in Irepodun Local Government Area of Kwara State. I am second of seven children to Chief Simeon Olabode Anifaloyin, the Onikoyi of Agama, Kwara State and Deaconess Florence Anifaloyin. I spent a major part of my life in Nigeria but moved to the United States of America 12 years ago. I grew up in a very creative family. My mum and siblings were members of the church choir and I used to be the lead vocalist. My uncle, Adelove, was a father to everyone, including his sons, Kunle, Gabriel and Aremu Afolayan. He would always take us to his film production scenes as little kids.
How did you come into music?
I studied Biochemistry at the university but I have always made my creative talent a huge priority. I started as a runway model then went into music and film production. I released my debut singles, Jeje and Femi in 2008. In 2009, I was in the underground train in London and my song, Jeje was played on the radio and I knew I was doing something right. I went to New York Film Academy to study filmmaking and cinematography eight years ago.
People say life begins at 40. Is your life just beginning at 40?
Yes, looking back at 40 years of my life and the accomplishments. This is the time to focus on my dreams and live it. So, I can say life really starts at 40.
How are you coping with the entertainment industry in this COVID-19 pandemic time?
I feel it’s really affecting the entertainment industry. A lot of activities have been put on hold. I had a premiere that was cancelled. We just have to follow government’s protocols so we all can stay healthy and safe.
Tell us more about your music and movie production.
I dropped a new single about a month ago. It’s called Irawo Owuro (Morning Star). Last year, I dropped Alubarika. And now I’m dropping a single from my EP coming up soon. Also, we have two major movies coming up this year.
How will you describe your music and who are your mentors?
Some people call it Afrojazz, but I feel my music is a unique sound. My mentors are Adelove, Kunle Afolayan, Richard Mofe-Damijo (RMD), Ramsey Noah, Bolanle Ninolowo and Seun Akindele. And in terms of music, I love Asa, Brymo, 2Face and Femi Kuti.
What are your weaknesses and strengths?
I am a very humble person. And I know how to balance my weaknesses and strengths.
What are your challenges?
As a young artiste, you need sponsors and supports.
What do you think about Nigerian entertainment industry?
The Nigerian entertainment industry is expanding and getting bigger by the day. I believe the world is beginning to appreciate Nigerian music. And for me, I see lots of my dreams coming into reality in the next five years.