By Lawrence Enyoghasu
Jamika Entertainment is gradually becoming a household name for spotting talents and taking them to the top.
Founded in 2013 by the enigmatic Jerry Ihensekhien and managed by his brother, Stanley, the outfit recently signed up a talented 15-year-old singer, Yung Bos. In this interview, Ihensekhien reveals reasons for signing artistes who are predominantly teenagers.
How do you discover and groom the artistes you sign to your label?
Discovering young artistes with the right talent is not an easy feat. There are so many musically gifted young Nigerians out there, sometimes we wish we have the power to sign a lot more, but it is not that easy. Apart from talent, we also look at their personality, their background and whether they have the right chemistry to work with our team. If the artiste has the perfect connection with us, then it is easy for us to work with them and push them to the pinnacle of success that benefits us all.
Fans are familiar with some of your artistes like Sultan, Church of Men and Koredianx. Tell us about the new signee, Yung Bos, what is special about him?
Fans and people in the music industry know how versatile our acts are, they all have their different styles. For example, Sultan was known as hip-hop prodigy when he started. But on the release of his second album titled after his alter ego, Sultan Afroboy, he showed his powerful take on Afrobeats. Yung Bos has a similar backstory to that, he has a more western pop-trap music fusion but he is versatile enough to mix it with elements of Afrobeats, which makes him different, and for his tender age, quite special.
How do you manage all your artistes and not make anyone of them feel left behind?
All our artistes are known as ‘Jamika Force’, we are one family; we all discuss and make plans together, it is a collective thing. That’s why it is important that we bring people who have the right personality and chemistry to join us. You can’t put a vulture among eagles, they might be birds, but one is a scavenger and the other a powerful hunter.
Yung Bos recently said he would win a Grammy just like Burna Boy, how confident are you about that?
Confidence is a good thing; if you have the ability and push to succeed then anything is achievable. Many would say he is over-reaching for the Grammy because he is more like a baby in the entertainment industry, but we believe in him and that’s why we signed him. Our artistes have always been nominated for awards and we have won some, so definitely we are confident in not just Yung Bos but also every other artiste on our label.
Okay, don’t you see other artistes and music labels in Nigeria as tough competition?
We have no competition; and let me clarify, we don’t really see them as competition, we are more like a family taking Nigerian entertainment to the forefront of international relevance. We have worked with other major labels and artistes such as G-Worldwide and Skales, and we are always supporting each other because a win for one is a win for all on the international stage.
Where does Jamika Entertainment see itself in the future?
We have plans to expand; we are looking at getting into movies and possibly the video gaming market. We want to be able to tap into the vast wealth of artistic talent Nigeria has to offer, and push it beyond borders. So, our vision for the future is to be one of the major players in the entertainment industry.
What advice do you have for artistes and music producers that want to get signed up to Jamika Entertainment?
Keep working on your craft, be the best you can be, stay humble, have good values and have a positive mindset. It’s then you can participate in any of our future auditions.