YKB Is On A Mission, To Make Lives Better With His Music

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YKB Is On A Mission, To Make Lives Better With His Music

Since his debut in 2019 with the release of the viral freestyle Swaggu Nigerian artiste Oluwo Yusuf Gbolaga, better known as YKB, has not looked back. He has continued to entice his audience with slicker rhymes and flows. His hit single, San Siro took over the airwaves last year. It became an anthem of some sort for lover boys. However, it wasn’t a surprise that San Siro was on the lips of everyone. 

YKB had been part of Mr. Eazi’s emPawa Class of 2020 alongside other outstanding young African musicians and laced a collaboration with street-pop heavyweight, Zlatan. His debut album, Before I Blow included songs such as Wake Up and Practise Patience both of which helped listeners understand where the artist was at the time in his life while being lively and colorful. As the title implies, Before I Blow was an entree. His new EP; Yusful Music is another formidable piece of work. . 

“Good evening, Mr. Alex,” he says immediately after joining the call. I returned his greeting, and we exchanged pleasantries before we got into what was supposed to be a brief interview with only five questions but quickly evolved into a conversation as warm as that with a friend. 

He bared his mind about his music, his latest EP; Yusful Music, how relationships continue to help him grow, what inspires him, and what drives him. 

How did you arrive at the title Yusful Music for your EP

Yusful is a flip on my name. It started back in secondary school. I was making a joke with a girl, her name was Grace, I called her Disgrace, she reported to the teacher, and the teacher told her to call me useless, but I objected to being called that because I am useful. I kept the name since then and this album was a good opportunity to use that name.

What was the inspiration for your first single off the project, San Siro

So, I wrote San Siro to impress a lady. She likes when a song has good writing, clever and witty lyrics. She likes when a song is interesting from the intro to the outro, and that’s what I did with San Siro.


The things you do for love…

Your music has grown in leaps and bounds and you’re vocal about the struggles of a rising artiste, what keeps you motivated?

My curiosity keeps me going. Personally, music is a medium for me to express myself. From my first EP; Before I Blow to Yusful music , I have consistently talked about things that are true because it’s borne out of real-life situations. However, the difference between this EP and my first EP was this is more musically sound because I approached experts to help with working with it.

You’re constantly surrounded by greatness. You recently toured the country with CKay, you’re friends with artists like Boj, do you ever look at some of your egbons in the game and feel pressure?

The only pressure I feel is from home. I don’t feel pressured by my colleagues in the industry. They’re always there to encourage me. They’re vocal about my talent and creativity. Whenever I talk to Ckay, BNXN, Boj, Victony, Zlatan, and others about music, I always get energized to do more. I don’t feel pressure from them. Asake is someone else who always comes through with enough encouragement. I’m grateful.

Also, my self-awareness guides me. I know what I want from music and what I intend to use that for. I have a sense of direction. I always tell people that I’m more of an artist than a musician, hence I’m not concerned about the successes of my colleagues. I’m doing good and the stars will align.

So, before this interview began, you made some spiritual remarks, and in the course of this interview, you have made others, why that?

It’s because I believe, an artiste is an employee of God, and most of the things God will bless us with, he can do that through an artiste because when artists create something, it goes out of their hands. That’s why you see my songs getting to places I haven’t gotten to, and I believe the reason my song went there was because it has a mission to make someone’s life better. My purpose in making music is to create something people can connect with, and make their lives better because there’s this connection that exists when you find someone that’s going through the same struggle as you. There’s this comfort that you feel in them. The reason I sound spiritual is because my profession is spiritual. The angels were created to sing, and I’m one of the humans that were created to sing, so, I always tap into that spiritual frequency.

Yusful music is getting accolades already-

It’s bursting my head already o

Are you surprised that it’s getting accolades already?

Not like I’m surprised but music isn’t predictable.  So, it’s like when you have five children that turned 18, and they’re leaving the house, you’re anxious they’re leaving, not like you didn’t train them well, but you’re anxious because you don’t have an idea what they might do. That’s how I felt when I was dropping this EP. These children have been making me proud. E dey burst my head.

What do you want your fans to remember this EP for?

I want it to be a project that I will sit with for the longest time. I want to be evergreen like the music our parents play; the old-school music. That’s what I want for my music. I want my music to occupy a significant part of their soul. I want them to reference my music to their children as what they were playing during their time.

What’s your favorite track off your EP?

It has changed over time, right now, it’s Komplete Riddim. It’s bursting my head. I’m enjoying this project as much as you guys.

Going forward, what are we expecting from you next?

My fans should get ready because I’m introducing various ways for them to enjoy my music.  I want to enjoy my music along with my fans. It will give me fulfillment.

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