Sunday Adeniyi, Nigerian Afropop singer better known as Sunny Ade, says his family kicked against his choice of being a musician because of the perceived unseriousness of people venturing into music at the time.
The award-winning singer disclosed this during a visit to the residence of Temidara Onafuye, his nine-year-old fan, in Lagos on Sunday.
Onafuye, a primary school pupil based in North Carolina, USA — visiting Nigeria for the Christmas and New Year — had said she craved to see the iconic singer because of her love for his music.
Fielding questions from the little girl, the singer said he defied the odds to pursue his interest in music.
He added that he bought his first guitar when he was 16 years old with his personal savings.
Ade also noted that as a singer, his passion for guitar made him sacrifice his savings to acquire it.
“Apart from singing. I play guitar, keyboard, different percussion instruments including talking drum, “Sakara”, “Omele’, “Konga”; all these make African music stand out,” he said.
“I have passion for guitar, I see it as my baby and I cannot do without it. Couple of years ago, I was rated 69th best guitarists in the whole world.
“I decided to learn how to play guitar on my own and I bought my first guitar when I was 16 years old. I saved money and bought the guitar for myself. All my family members did not want me to play music because they believed that musicians at that time were not serious people
“Eventually. when I bought the guitar I hid it under the staircase. I was afraid to tell anybody that I wanted to go into the city for music training where I would be exposed.
“Luckily for me, I chose my keys and my style of music which is known as “Juju”.
Ade said he had composed more than 3, 000 songs. He added that all his songs were his favourite because “each of them serves a purpose”.
“I wanted to retire sometime ago, but my fans all over the world did not allow me. They said if I retire, what will I be doing,” the 73-year-old musician said.
“Juju music is in my blood, I cannot retire from music, I can only retire from stage. Even at 100 years, God willing, I will still be singing.”
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