A singer, Alexander Adelabu, aka Magixx, tells OGHENOVO EGODO-MICHAEL about his career and other issues
Tell us a bit about yourself and how you started music.
I am currently signed to Mavins Records. However, I have been doing music for about 15 years. My music is a big part of my journey. I started off in the choir when I was seven, so it has been a very huge part of my life. I started recording my own songs when I was 13. But, my professional career started in 2015.
How did you feel when Don Jazzy signed you to Mavin Records?
It was an opportunity of a lifetime. Many young artistes out there want to be signed by Don Jazzy, so it is an opportunity I am grateful for. I remember times when there was no opportunity and I kept working. But, God finally answered my prayers, and here we are. We are still working.
How would you describe your sound and what sets it apart from that of other artistes?
My music is generally something people can look forward to. My voice sets me apart, and that’s a big deal, because sometimes, all an artiste needs to do is sound different. I thank God for my unique voice. I also tell my stories differently. My personal experiences are unique, because I have experienced life in a different way, so my story also sets me apart.
Who are some of your biggest musical influences and how have they impacted your music?
I have had big inspirations from way back. Lagbaja is one huge influence on my music. I also love Celine Dion, as well as the late Tupac and Notorious BIG. I also listened to lots of Fela’s music when I was a child, and that of many others, because my dad often played music in the house.
One thing is certain— all those people had influence on my views and how I wanted to go about my music. Today, I am influenced by the likes of Drake, Wizkid, Burnaboy and Davido, who inspire me in different ways to believe in African music.
Tell us about your creative process when it comes to making music.
I listen to the instrumentals, then I create melodies from there. After that, I put in the words and sometimes, I already have the words, I just make the beat around them.
What messages do you hope to convey through your music and performances?
I want to be able to inspire people to be their best selves. Also, people should learn to love and not forget about the simple things in life, such as appreciation. The more one can be appreciative, the happier one would be. One can have a billion and not appreciate it whereas, to another person, it is the whole world. A lot of people are not happy because they are not where they want to be, but they should actually look around and appreciate the simplest things right now. One has to always enjoy the ‘now’ because if one is only focused on wanting more and more, one might never get to live life to the fullest.
How do you stay grounded and focused amidst all the fame?
I just try my best. It is just for one to work more than one plays. If I feel like I have played a lot in the last two days, then I dedicate the next four days to work. If I went out through the whole of last weekend then, I dedicate the next week to work. That is what I do, and it works for me.
What has been your most memorable experience since joining Mavin Records?
Since I joined the team, every day has been memorable. We do lots of investments in ourselves daily. Also, seeing other colleagues doing so well inspires one to do more. Every day is exciting for me.
How do you handle criticism and negative feedback from fans and critics?
It is not easy but, if anyone abuses my music or says something about it, it is on that person, because there are so many other people who love that same song. I feel like they have not seen the light yet, and it is on me to keep doing what I do. I don’t owe anyone anything, and vice versa. Many critics might not be able to manage and get to one’s level. So, one just has to have it at the back of one’s mind that one is doing one’s best. For me, I like to focus on the positives— the platforms I enjoy, and things that give me joy. I am always happy when I am in the studio. I also love seeing my parents, especially my mum. When I do the things I love, negative things don’t even come to my mind.
Can you tell us about any forthcoming projects or collaborations you have in the works?
There are lots of collaborations in the works, and a few of them would be coming out soon. I will be releasing a new single soon, and I am working on my album too.
How do you balance your personal life with your schedule as an artiste?
I mix my personal and work lives because for me, there is no personal life. I just find a way to make a balance.
What are some of your hobbies or activities outside music?
I like women and many other things. Like I said earlier, I also love my family. I love going out and visiting new places as well. It is always fun meeting new people.
How do you stay healthy and maintain your energy levels during long hours in the studio or on stage?
I work out at home about three times a week. I do press-ups, sit-ups and many other work-out routines.
How do you engage with your fans on social media and in person?
I post a lot on my Instagram story, because it allows me to communicate and connect with my fans.
Physically, I had my concert last year, and I have an activation this year. However, I want to do interviews with my fans more. I did that like twice last year. I am grateful to God that it worked last year, so I want to improve on that this year.
What is your opinion on the current state of the Nigerian music industry and where do you see it going in the future?
I feel like this is the biggest afrobeats has ever been, and it can get better, as long as we keep the quality going because, people all over the world are now interested in afrobeats. They see quality in our production and work ethics. They see that we are not just improving, but we are real and original. As long as we keep this going, we can only get better. This is just the starting point.
How do you reflect your heritage in your style?
Inasmuch as it is afro-fusion, afro RnB, afro pop, or whatever it is called, it is still African. That alone is putting our culture at the forefront.
What is your favourite song you have released?
Like a Movie is my favourite song. To me, it is the best song I have ever recorded, because it was so effortless. I made it in 2020 and after recording it, I played it every day for five months.
How has working with Don Jazzy and other Mavin Records artistes influenced your music?
Every one of these people is super talented, who are doing so well at home and abroad. It is inspiring to see, and it makes me want to work hard and do my best. It has been great working with those guys; from the producers to the artistes, managers, and even stylist.
What has been the biggest challenge you have faced as an artiste and how did you overcome it?
The biggest challenge I have had to face as an artiste was exposure. When it comes to exposure, I think I did the right thing by putting myself out there on social media, freestyling, and doing lots of song ‘covers’. And when the opportunity came, it was the best.
Can you tell us about a time you had to step out of your comfort zone as an artiste?
Social media makes me step out of my comfort zone, because inasmuch as I like to post my music out there, I am not good with posting my personal life on social media. I enjoy my life too much to want to show people how I am enjoying it. I am not wired like that. I don’t feel I am meant to carry my phone and start recording while doing personal stuff. Sometimes, after doing some things, I would remember that I ought to post those things. I don’t know how to just post everything on social media. But now, I have to make conscious efforts to post things on social media. In fact, I am still learning to do that.
How do you stay inspired and motivated to create new music?
For me, it is about looking at my goals and personal aspirations. I often feel like I have not done anything yet for myself in terms of the goals I hope to achieve in a couple of years, and that keeps me going.
As someone who started making music at a young age, what has the support you’re your family been like?
My mum is very supportive. She always backed me up when I did reasonable things as a child. In fact, she was very supportive of me doing music, and one of my aunties, Yemi, used to encourage me to join band rehearsals in my school then. My dad was always of the opinion that once I finished school, I could do whatever I wanted.
If you could, what advice would you give to your younger self when you were just starting out in the industry?
I would just say, “Work hard, because it is in working that you will discover”. If one does not work, one will not discover. Even if one fails, one should just try, because the person that did not try cannot say he failed.
How do you see yourself evolving as an artiste in the next few years?
I would say, “Just wait and see”.
What can fans expect from you in the future and what are some of your long-term goals as an artiste?
I want to do more than intended. For now, it is about doing features and award shows, and going to bed like a huge lion. I really want to live the rockstar superstar life like Beyonce. I want to get to the highest heights, and that can only happen little by little. One has to work for it and know that one deserves it, and I am getting there.