M.I is speaking his mind…
Undisputed rapper and CEO of Loppy Music, Jude Abaga, otherwise known as M.I, has released his most anticipated album, “The Chairman”, four years after he dropped M.I 2.
The versatile rapper who emerged the most financially successfully rapper in 2013, spoke with ENCOMIUM Weekly on various issues, including his love life, and why he featured 26 superstars in the 17 tracker album.
Read excerpts from the interview
Why did it take you five to six years to release an album?
It’s not up to six years. It was four years. I still remember, November 2010 and I released my new album, Chairman, November 2014.MI Abaga
Still, four years is a long time for an artiste like you. What happened?
Different things that came together but unconnected. I got the post of VP of Chocolate City. The next day, Brother Jesse quit. While we were yet to solve that problem, about a month later, Brymo also left. Chocolate City crisis affected a lot of people, and as the VP of the label, my attention went to other things.MI Abaga
Other things like?
Building the team. It affected a lot of people. We have to figure out what was going on, solve things and move on, because it wasn’t easy, two artistes left us. It was difficult for us as a label, but we were able to manage it. That affected my music.
Also, that same year, one of my many blessings came up. I got endorsements for different products. I was travellings for shows, touring different cities. All these were the reasons MI’s album was delayed till now.MI Abaga
Will it be right to say MI sacrificed his music for label in the face of crises?
I don’t want to see it like that because everybody sacrificed. When I was coming up, Jesse and Ice-Prince also sacrificed before Jesse left. It was a period of sacrifice for me to sit back. Although I didn’t expect it to be so long as it was eventually.MI Abaga
Let’s talk about Jesse Jagz and Brymo exit from Chocolate City. Don’t you think you could have prevented them from leaving?
These are two different scenarios, but it’s like a biblical saying, “Hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” Jesse had a vision for something called Jagz Nation, which is the opposite of Chocolate City brand. Chocolate City brand is a pop brand but Jagz Nation is spiritual brand (reggae). He couldn’t do both, even when he tried to. So, it’s a calling and he needed to leave at that time, nobody could prevent that. Today, I tell you, we’re cool. He gets support from Chocolate City. He was at my album listening party, and the next day, I read that MI and Jesse Jagz re-united. It was very funny because how would brothers re-unite? We’ve been brothers; friends.MI Abaga
Did you pay them for the feature, especially Wizkid, who recently revealed that he charges N10 million for collabo?
I didn’t pay them, except few. The payment was minimal, not much, just to help the collaboration. Let me quickly react to the rift between Wizkid and Miss Saeon. I think, personally, Wizkid did nothing wrong because it’s business. You approached him for business and he delivered. Business is business. In my own opinion, the way Miss Saeon went about it is wrong. You don’t talk about business deals in public. That’s how I feel. Personally, I don’t charge for collabo. Wizkid didn’t charge me; even when he came to record with one of my artistes here, he didn’t even drink water, not to talk of charging. However, if you meet my management and approach us with a business deal, we won’t turn it down.MI Abaga
We’re interested in Jude getting married. When will that be?
Unfortunately, Jude is not here (smiles). You’re interviewing MI and MI is not going to get married. But I am sure Jude will soon get married, people should just watch out for the time.MI Abaga
M.I isn’t the only one who has aired his views on marriage. Flavour too has done so. Read it here if you missed it.
Credit: Encomium | Photo Credit: TCD Photography