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I Cant Compare Any Of My Albums-Dare Melody

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Dare David Odunuga, popular as Dare Melody. In this interview with The Octopus News, the amiable and well-travelled singer spoke about his 7th album, “Grass To Grace”, and his forthcoming celebration of his 20 years on stage.

Dare Melody is a brand that has been successful over the years, what has been sustaining you?

Basically, my sustaining power has been God.

Did you expect this kind of success when you started music?

Honestly, I never believed that I would be where I am today.

What inspired your genre of music?

I got the inspiration from God. When I was in school I loved to sing, but my parent didn’t support me. They simply didn’t want to hear about it. Sometimes when I listened to gospel artistes like “Ayewa International” and “Ayo Nio” I felt the urge to sing. I dreamed of being a successful musician, but my family especially my dad and mum didn’t support the idea.

Your parent didn’t support you and you still went on?
 
Yes I did. The decision to continue with my passion led to the production of my first album titled “Damilare”. It was an album, which had a lot of meaning to me because I was asking God to vindicate me. A lot of people felt it was just the title of an album, but for me, it was far deeper than that.

What were the reactions of your parents when you released your first album?

My mum was very disappointed when she heard that I went ahead to become a musician. She told me I was too stubborn because I went ahead to do music despite the fact that I had been forbidden from doing it. She wondered how the son of a Chartered Accountant would embarrass the family by deciding that he wanted to be a musician. My parents didn’t support me at all, but I thank God that I survived the ordeal.

Was your second album a confirmation that you had made up your mind to sing?

Indeed it was. At that point, I had done “Damilare” through which I asked God to vindicate me. With my second album titled “Omo Alade Ogo”, it was a confirmation that a glorious child had arrived. From there, there was no looking back as I subsequently released my third album “Adaba Shilo” and the fourth “Eleti Gbaroye”. My fifth is titled Goodness and Mercy and the sixth one is titled “Oba Iyanu”. Presently, I have concluded work on my seventh album which I am planning to release soon.

At what point did your parents begin to support your career as a musician?

If you recall I told you that I am a survivalist. The moment the first album was released it became a massive success. The album was loved in every part of Nigeria. It wasn’t a case of the people in the South West loved it; no, it was popular in all nooks and crannies of Nigeria. That became the turning point for me. My mother began to introduce herself as the mother of Dare Melody. That is why I said that I am a survivalist and I give God all the glory.
 
In the past, music was considered a career for charlatans, today the orientation has changed; tell us what music has contributed to your life?
Music has indeed done a lot for me. I have achieved a lot as a musician. To start with, my first daughter is currently living in America. I have travelled to a lot of countries through music. You will be amazed if I tell you some countries where my fans are demanding to see me perform. Places like Cairo in Egypt, which is known to be a predominantly Muslim country, places like the Philippines. There are some Yoruba people there and they want to see me perform live.

Who are your contemporaries in this industry?

I don’t consider anybody a contemporary, rather I would call them my colleagues. I am talking about people like Evangelist Lanre Atorise, Omo Abule and Seyi Alapanla.

You are known to be a member of Cherubim & Seraphim Ayo Ni (C&S), has this church aided your career?

Of course it has. They have helped my career both individually and collectively. There is a certain woman called Mummy Ogunyoye, I lost that woman some weeks back. She passed on about three weeks ago. She was always there for me both spiritually and physically. I will always be proud of white garment churches because it is my foundation. I am from C&S Ayo Ni Movement.

Do you make your music for C&S members alone?

I was going to clarify that. I don’t make my music for white garment churches alone. My music cuts across all denominations. People from Redeemed Christian Church, Apostolic Church, Winners, Celestial Church and other Pentecostal churches also know me, they listen to my music, but I am from C&S.

Let’s talk about your latest album titled ‘From Grass To Grace’, what inspired the title?

Honestly, it is a continuation of the story we started from the beginning of this interview. I never knew that I would be this successful; I never knew I would be this great. People didn’t want me to sing, but I continued, I worked harder every day, I prayed and today I give God all the glory because I have survived.

What has been your guiding principle?

Basically, it’s the decision to be focused. In all I do I try to be focused. I try to stay away from things that could stain me. It is not by my power or myth, it is God.

How many tracks do you have in the new album?

It’s a three track album with no collaborations.

Grass To Grace implies that you are fulfilled in life, are you?

Yes I am. I told you that I am a survivalist. I never thought that I would be where I am today. Everybody wants to see and listen to Dare Melody both home and abroad. I am happy about that and I tell you that is fulfilling.

‘Damilare’, according to you was a massive success; do you think that ‘Grass To Grace’ will replicate the achievement of your first album?
You can’t compare one album with the other. If you listen to “Damilare” you won’t be able to compare it with “Alade Ogo”. The same applies if you compare “Goodness and Mercy” with any of my albums. So, this album is a very unique one. It is very special. It is a great work of art.

What is peculiar about your albums?

The fact is that if you listen to any of my albums you will find a song you can relate with. If you pick “Damilare” you will find a song on the album which is almost an album on its own.

Let’s talk about your 20 years on stage celebration, what should your fans expect?

It has not been easy, but we are grateful to God. We are expecting a lot of people. We expect to see the Deputy Governor of Lagos State, Idiat Oluranti Adebule, Kemi Nelson, Tayo Ayinde Akinmade, Engineer Toyin Omotosho and others at the event. We are also expecting some popular pastors and musicians who are coming to celebrate with Dare Melody. It’s a multifaceted event because we are going to launch DM Multimedia Studio on that day. It’s actually Dare Melody Multimedia Studio, but we shortened it to DM Multimedia Studio. We are also launching a Child Support Foundation for widows out there.

Would young artistes work for free in this studio?

Up and coming artistes can come and work on their album there. They can work on a per section basis, but to encourage them they will get a discount.

Earlier you mentioned the names of people who you expect to see at your celebration holding on December 11 at LTV 8, can you be specific about the music artistes?
Evangelist Lanre Teriba will definitely be there, Busola Eleyele will also be in attendance, Seyi Lewis will attend, Bunmi Akelanu, Mega 99 and Pasuma will be present on the day.

Tell us about your fashion ideology
.
I love to project my culture. I love natives. I have them in different designs. If you see my posters or you visit my Facebook account you will see what I am trying to say. I love to wear Agbada. In the past I used to think that it was inconveniencing, but I have found out that it was a really good costume. For my footwear I like Giuseppe Zanotti designs.

Finally, tell us about one of your unfulfilled dreams?

I am planning to be a Pastor. However, this is still a dream; it is not something for now.  That is also why I worked hard for this album because it is not easy. Hopefully, it will be soon.
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