Kirk Franklyn is my idol –Josh Ajakaye, gospel singer

For over 15 years, gospel singer, Josh Ajakaye, a member of the now defunct JKISS, has been an underground artiste performing in churches across Nigeria. Recently, he decided to re-brand when he dropped his debut single entitled, Jomiloju. In this chat with The Entertainer, he talks about the journey so far and shares his dreams.

Excerpts:

What’s new about Josh Ajakai­ye?

Josh Ajakaye just re-branded recently. I have been a music director for over two decades. Right now I am coming out with an album with my crew, Joshua & Cedar Crew. We are here to make a big impact on the gospel music scene!

We understand that you just dropped a new single, Jomiloju, what has been the response?

Jomiloju means amazement. The song has taken over in churches across Lagos as a praise song. I am sure this is because of the unique blend of Igbo, Yoruba and pidgin embedded in the song.

When is the full album going to drop and do you have any plans for collabos?

The full album should drop in Febru­ary 2015. We are featuring Frank Edward, Victor Ayeni (Agbanilagbatan), Ighosa, Franca and Mimi. There are also some exceptionally talented young chaps I discovered in my church, The Re­deemed Christian Church of God, Rose of Sharon Parish. They are known as The Champions.

How many tracks are on the album?

I have 10 wonderful tracks produced by one of our seasoned and award winning produc­ers, Wole Oni. Other producers on the album are Lola Fadiya and Owen Charles. You were once a member of gospel group, JKISS, and you guys recorded a couple of songs. What became of the group?

I was the lead singer back in JKISS about 15years ago. We were young and vibrant then. However, the reality of tak­ing responsibilities as men came along and we just drifted apart.

How do you get inspiration to write songs?

My inspiration comes from things around me and when I meditate in my closet. Most times as a keyboardist, I cre­ate melody lines with my keyboard and then later meditate to write my lyrics on the melody I created.

Who are your role models?

My number one role model is Kirk Franklin. Others are Pastor Ituah Ig­hodalo and my beloved pastor, Pastor Emeka Obiagwu.

Your sound seems to be patterned after Kirk Franklyn’s. What does he mean to you?

Kirk Franklyn is my music idol. I ap­preciate his dexterity and creativity. He revolutionalized contemporary gospel music.

What is your take on gospel music today in Nigeria?

Gospel music in Nigeria has taken a mighty leap. It’s more enterprising and I think we are in the right direction though we have more to do by taking our place in the secular environment.

What are your dreams?

I have serious passion for youth development and empowerment. I wish to promote talented Nigerian youths. I also desire to be a role model to budding youths in our society. It won’t be out of place to say I want to be among the top­most employers of labour in the world. Finally, I don’t want to miss heaven.

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