Saturday, December 3, 2022

Namibia greener for Juju Vine

He made a decision to pack his bags and move to Namibia, where he says the arts have a better chance of survival. Along with him he took his management business skill, which he says he is using to bring more exposure to his fellow countrymen who are still making waves in our motherland.
Something he has done before.

Junior “Juju Vine” Sekolokwane said, inspired by his father and aunts’ love for music, he began his career in 1995, when he was amongst a group of young boys who decided that they wanted to be performers. But he said that it didn’t work out.

So when an opportunity presented itself in 2005, for him to manage Alkhaidas, a group which had come second place in the My African Dream competition, he did not hesitate to take it.

“I decided to take them on. I told them that I’d manage them and I’ll pay for everything. I recorded their album. I’m the one who was financing and marketing them. Booking them on Mokaragana. Everywhere. I also launched their album. In the long run I decided to let them go because they had gotten out of control.” Something he blamed on the limelight.

During an impromptu interview, when he was in the country to perform and race at the Toyota 1000km desert race, Juju Vine took time to talk about his journey in the music industry, his relocation and the management company he is setting up in Namibia. He said that while in Namibia he worked with Botswana artists such as Ashley Gops, Dj T-Fong, Dj Fedz and Noella; in either setting up performances for them or getting their music played on the neighbouring country’s radio stations.

He said in the pipeline is the plan for a Battle of the DJs Show where he intends for Botswana and Namibian Djs to battle it out in Namibia. And he is also working on bringing a performance by the current sensation, ATI.

The artist, of the Mr. Chinaman fame, talked passionately about how the citizens of Namibia take the arts seriously. Something every talented being in our motherland complains about, in what they term as a lack of support.

“All I can say is that people in Namibia are more into playing their local content unlike here where you hear too much of Beyonce. They respect music. And even their government emphasizes that they should play local music. You’ll find that in Namibia, at least 80 percent of radio stations whether private or government, play a lot of local music. They have supported me. They take me as their local artist, I don’t know why but they have really supported me,” Juju Vine said.

He said that the Namibians have also showed their support by playing his videos on their TV channels, NBC and One Africa. Videos that are now being played on South Africa’s Channel O. He added that he is in talks to get them on DSTV’s Trace. Asked why he didn’t opt for the more travelled South African road, he said that he was mostly deterred by the crime rate in South Africa, but was quick to add that should an opportunity come up in the country on our southern border he would not hesitate to take it.

Talking further about Namibia, he said that the country has an association called NASCAM, which he says is an equivalent of Botswana’s newly established COSBOTS.

“It’s the one that makes sure that when your music is played, you get paid. When your music plays or your videos play, you are assured of a payment. They have already paid me for 2012. I started there in 2011, so I have received payment for 2012.”

He said that they get paid yearly. Explaining how the system works he said that there is a log that’s installed in all radio stations, and when one’s song is played, it is recorded on the log and at the end of it all, the officials of the association take it to their offices to compile for payment. He added that it’d be good for the country if COSBOTS did the same thing in Botswana.

He took time to talk about his upcoming album, which he said he hopes to release in August. The album for which Mr. Chinaman is it’s single.

“I meant to have released it earlier but I’ve had other issues to attend to. Like right now, I’ll be racing at the Toyota Desert Race so I had to prepare.”

He said that he was going to return to work as soon as he gets back to his new home; where he will be shooting videos for the songs in his upcoming second offering.

“I’ll have 12 tracks in the album and it will be called, All I Want.”

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