Aisha Odey: The African White Chic Of Nigerian Music Business

Hands down one of the most persistent people you will ever meet in the Nigerian creative industry, Aisha Odey is in an entire league of her own. It’s in the bluntness with which she speaks her truth (a typical example of this would be how she shook the house at the 3rd edition of Music Business and Drinks), and in the way she puts her foot down (even if it is down a person’s throat lol) to get things done.

She would not fit into a box even if you tried to force her into one. Adorned with a rare skin type which many wrongly label as Vitiligo, Aisha stands out as a phoenix who has been through hell and high water due to the stigma of being different but has risen from it all. She has cause to believe that she might be the only girl in the world with the complexity of her complexion and unlike her once withdrawn self, she now wears this uniqueness with impregnable confidence.

What started out as an innocent trip to a dance/modelling audition with her sisters, has now spun into 10 years’ worth of hands-on experience in talent management, content creation and public relations. In a few weeks. Aisha hopes to host a masterclass where she will pour back this wealth of knowledge into the minds of younger industry crooners, as part of her quota to reform and heal our vivaciously dynamic yet diseased music ecosystem.

In nearly four hours full of fun and insight, Vibe.ng’s multi-talented guest lets us into her world, sharing her story of growth and her perspective of the showbiz environment that she is currently immersed in.

Vibe: As an artiste manager and PR consultant, what would you say the job truly entails and what are the biggest challenges you face?

Aisha: Ermm the job entails a lot of sacrifice, passion and focus to achieve prestigious goals that you have set out for yourself. Biggest challenges would be people having an impression that I’m not affordable to work with (I’m very affordable I promise).

Vibe: Tell us a little about AWC Management solutions.

Aisha: AWC Management Solutions is an artiste management and activation company that provides the services of talent management, A&R, PR, PR Consultancy, bookings, promotions, content creating and not limited to anything regarding entertainment. We are a body that looks out for originality and uniqueness in each talent we represent. We are that intermediary between the public and our talents which makes it an impelling culture to be represented as the best in whatever we do and whoever we represent. You can call us ‘The Contagious ones’ lol!

Vibe: How did you find yourself in this field?

Aisha: It found me and I embraced it by just flowing with the vibe. I questioned some of my decisions back then but I just couldn’t bring myself to stop feeling about music the way I did.

When the building materials came in form of meeting some celebrities almost the same time, I knew I had a connection with music and that’s was when I began learning on the job while hanging out with them. The rest is history lol.

Vibe: How do you manage your time as Artiste manager, AWC management solutions founder, PR Manager and CEO of De Rigueur?

Aisha: Hmmm the first 3 descriptions are easy to shuffle because it’s under the same work environment so it doesn’t feel like pressure sometimes, Derigueur Scents is my side business which emerged as a result of my love for perfumes. I just have people place their orders, make payments and then I deliver but it doesn’t affect me at all, I also cook on the side (I mean, it’s money we are looking for lol.)

Vibe: What do you look out for in an artiste?

Aisha: Raw talent, passion and skill.

Vibe: Which artiste’s management and PR team do you admire and why?

Aisha: Internationally, I’d say Beyonce Knowles. They understand the business side of music, and they cash out smartly. Locally, that would be Burna Boy because they are well structured and without so much fuzz they are indeed making me proud of my job and most importantly, making me proud to be African. They know the business and the result is visibly cognizant.

Vibe: Which artiste would you say needs a new team?

Aisha: Solidstar.

Vibe: How would you define the role of women in the entertainment sector right now?

Aisha: Role of women remains the same as the role of men. It’s not dissected in any way to sieve certain duties to favour either sex. But defining the role of a woman, I’d say the results are not oblivious, we are very effective in every sector and it’s just beginning.

Vibe: What do you love most about your job?

Aisha: A lot including the challenges, but I love the fact that I get to party often lol. I love to dance to loud music so yeah that’s a happy place for me.

Vibe: If you were to choose another profession, what would it be?

Aisha: Hmmm that would be me boxing myself and trust me when I say I can be anything I want to be. Before this profession of mine, I wanted to be a medical doctor but later studied Petroleum Engineering but now I’m in the entertainment world as a multiple player and on this same job I’ve discovered I’m great at other things such as photography, videography, content creating etc. I can be anything else as long as I develop each skill, enjoy my evolution process and not limit my mind to what I can or can’t do.

Vibe: You’re currently working on a masterclass series geared at educating artistes about the intricacies of the music business. What propelled the vision?

Aisha: The vision came as a result of me being tired of seeing underground talents suffer and giving up bright dreams just because they are clueless about how to navigate a successful career as creatives.

Vibe: In 5 years, how would you introduce yourself?

Aisha: African White Chic.

Vibe: What do you think about the Nigeria music industry and other music industries in the world?

Aisha: There’s no functioning structure in the Nigerian music industry and not comparing them to other industries in the world because we are clearly operating on different systems but regardless every industry needs a functioning system to aid the development process.

 

Story: Black Petal

Photography: Omoaqin

Wardrobe: Aisha Odey

Makeup: Ari’s Glow

 

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