Oteya wraps up 2018

The year 2018 is slowly coming to an end as there is less than a month before Christmas. In her words, here is Oteya's take on it.

23 November 2018 | Art and Entertainment

Oteya has been breaking boundaries and doing things out of the norm which gives hope to the industry and for music lovers getting used to live performances at concerts. The musician started off her year on a high note and then she went quiet, working in silence. The award-winner and one of the most consistent artists in the industry, Oteya, caught up with tjil to talk about the year from her perspective.

Tjil (t): When will you release an album, are you working on one and if so, what would it be like, who does it feature?

Oteya (O): I am most definitely going to release my album, but only in 2019. I have chosen next year as I will like to release my album at the same time I am celebrating 20 years in the music industry. My album will be a double album and that's all I am going say about it. Some songs will shock people so parental advisory is advised. Ha ha.

t: You have been off the scene for a while now, working in silence, why did you opt to do that and what have you achieved?

O: I have always been a mysterious artist. I actually have not been quiet; I started this year with a residency at Chopsi's for three months called Oteya and Friends and I have released a few songs. I am working on my third album. I wanted to take my time on each song to make sure that it sounds exactly the way I want it to sound and when people buy my album, each track will speak to them. I treasure my art and will only share it with the world when I am truly ready for them to hear it.

t: As an entertainer, what is the importance of one taking time off to unwind and how does it help with creativity?

O: It's very important to take time off to unwind. We are creatives and need inspiration. It's crucial to take time out to get away from everything and relax and that is when our creative juices start to flow again. I love movies and spending time with my loved ones, and that helps not only to keep me grounded, but also to feel inspired.

t: You have now been nominated in the category Stylist Female Artist Africa in the annual Abryanz Style and Fashion Awards. How do you maintain your fashion style, what inspires it and what does this award mean for your brand?

O: I am so honoured to be nominated. It means so much to me because I believe image is everything. I invest a lot in my image and it's so good to see that it has paid off. I am fortunate to have my sister Eunice Gonzo, my makeup artist Miss Jey, my stylist Leah Misika and my designer Melisa Poulton, on my team.

t: How was the experience of walking the runway for Melisa Poulton during the Windhoek Fashion Week?

O: I was so thrilled when she asked me to model her clothes during the WFW. Her line is out of this world; so fun, flirty and fierce! I was nervous as I have never done anything like that before. The girls backstage where amazing and made me feel so comfortable.

t: What is the importance of entertainers helping each other out despite the different industries?

O: I feel it's important for all of us to work together. Those of us who are established must try and push those who are coming up by collaborating with them. They are the future who will take over us once we retire. When I look at the Nigerian Industry, they have taken over Africa because they united as an industry. It's no lie when people say 'united we stand, divided we fall'. There is so much talent in Namibia the only problem is people want to eat alone and that does not benefit the industry at all.

t: You have reached out to international markets and have banging hits with artists from around Africa. A lot of people believe that Namibian talent is hard to export as we don't have this culture. Is this true and how has it worked in your favour?

O: I have worked with international artists like Macky2, Zambia's Mestre Dangi, Angola's, Dj Shiru and Cindy Sanyu and Kaycee from Uganda. When you make good music, it doesn't matter which country it is from. Namibian music can be exported, we just need MultiChoice to force a contract with Trace Africa so there's a Namibian channel like Naija10 for Nigeria which plays only Namibian videos so that people from other countries can get a taste of what Namibian music sounds like.

t: There were social media rumours of domestic violence in your relationship which you have denied. How did you and husband cope with this?

O: There was a photo that was leaked on social media which was a photo of myself taken behind the scenes for my music video I am Gone. I wrote the song to tackle domestic violence. This issue has and is escalating in our society and I felt I needed to write a song which inspires and encourages women to leave these relationships.

I do not condone domestic violence at all. As a society we need to stand together and say no to domestic violence. How long will we look on as our women are brutally murdered? I felt I had to do my part as an artist to offer a voice to the voiceless.

t: How would you describe 2018 as an artist, mother and wife?

O: 2018 to me was a rollercoaster; it had its ups and downs. I learnt to stand up for what I believe not to be right in terms of artists' treatment. Money is not everything. If you don't stand for something, you fall for everything. As a mother and wife, I do the best I can. I try to balance all those roles including being an artist. It's not easy but I try not to be too hard on myself.

t: What are your festive season plans and how do you spend that time?

O: Eish! If I am not performing then I will love to spend as much time with my family as I can. This is the first year we are celebrating Christmas without our dad so it's emotional. Losing him was not easy and still isn't, I miss him every day. Christmas is all about family and I am so blessed to have my family.

PHOTOS: Otsenane_Studios

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