I had totally forgotten who we were supposed to be shooting for ‘The Cover’ in October until a gracile tall young man in a white Gucci shirt and a dark man in all black walked through the door and sat in the waiting room.
I figured one of them was the person we were shooting for so I tried to surreptitiously look through the glass that separated the waiting room from the office to try to see who it was but I couldn’t figure out who exactly we were putting on the cover between the two people sitting on the chair.
After a while, my colleague, Tunde rescued me and pointed out that the person in the white shirt was the person we were shooting, and that the person was Joeboy.
Wanna know a secret? I knew who Joeboy was, as in I knew his name and I had danced to his music a bunch of times in the shower (Too much information?) but I had never seen any of his music videos, which explains why I didn’t know what he looked like, so please forgive my ignorance hehe *scratches head awkwardly*
From the moment Joeboy walked into the actual office, everyone loved him. Normally whenever a celebrity walks in to shoot ‘The Cover’ we say hello and then we go back to facing our computer screens. But with Joeboy it was different, he walked into the office with such a jovial attitude that you couldn’t have ignored him even if you wanted to. He said hello to everyone and before we knew it, people started bringing out their phones to take pictures and videos, one of my colleagues even face-timed his girlfriend (who happens to be a huge fan of the young superstar) so that she could see Joeboy.
At some random point, while Joeboy was preparing to do another show, a colleague of mine asked him to sing the chorus of one of his major hits “Baby”(you can tell that my colleagues where really excited to have Joeboy in the office) and of course the star was more than happy to sing in the midst of eager Accelerate TV employees and even encouraged us to sing along with him, by the way, you should know that his voice is as amazing in person as it is on the radio.
While setting up for the shoot, our head of fashion, Tokyo James was giving Joeboy some “fatherly” advice; the fashion mogul advised him about how to grow and maintain his brand and how not to get carried away in the industry and the music star listened, eager to learn from the experienced brand that is Tokyo James.
Music played in the background as Joeboy got styled in his first outfit which was a buttoned-up shirt and a bomber jacket from Tokyo James’ Spring Summer 20 collection, which fit perfectly on the empawa music star.
Joeboy is a king in front of the camera, and no I’m not exaggerating, every photo that was taken was absolutely effortless and everyone in the studio could tell that modeling should definitely be a career path that the star should go into. Bizzle Okoya stopped by for a bit in the middle of the shoot, and he was the ultimate unofficial hypeman, you can’t not have fun when Bizzle is around.
From the way he talked, you could tell that Joeboy didn’t just wake up one day and say that he wanted to do music just for the sake of doing music; right from a really young age, he was surrounded by people who influenced his love from music such as 9ice and ID Cabasa, he told us ” when I was in primary school, I used to hang out with OGs like 9ice and ID Cabasa in their studio back then in Akoka, being in their midst actually gave me some form of inspiration” His family and background also influenced his love for music “I grew up in a music inclined family, my dad used to play the keyboard, my brother played the base and my sister was in the choir, I used to attend choir practice but I never used to sing, I just sat down throughout and watched.”
While explaining how his career started, the music star told us about how he got discovered by Mr. Eazi “I started doing covers and the cover I did for Ed Sheeran’s Shape of you caught Mr. Eazi’s attention on Instagram. So I met Mr. Eazi and he introduced me to E-Kelly and other producers and that’s how it all started”
Joeboy has no plan of slowing down soon as he has an EP coming up, and with a stealthy side-eye look from his manager Lamba, he refused to give us any details about it asides the fact that it’s based on the idea of love and happiness. When asked what love and happiness meant to him, it took all the willpower I had not to laugh out loud in the middle of the interview, apparently, Jollof and credit alert is what love and happiness mean to the young star. Oh and good morning messages from one of the loves of his life, and before you start thinking too far, he was talking about his mum, sister, and girlfriend. Yes, he has a girlfriend, sorry to all the single ladies who were hoping otherwise.
Oh and by the way, did I tell you that Joeboy is a badass dancer, that boy has moves for days, he even tried to teach the photographer, A cup of Mikey, some legwork moves but from the way it looks, Mikey has a looong way to go before he learns this Zanku dance.
There’s this inexplicable energy that Joeboy has that you can’t help but admire, that energy is also very contagious and Tokyo caught the bug which caused him to want to learn some of Joeboy’s unique slangs. There’s one slang which totally made me laugh- and yes this time I actually did laugh out loud in the middle of the interview- the slang is Fripapalebeyoski which apparently means “soft booty”. To be honest, it sounds easier just saying “soft booty” but what do I know, I’m old.
There’s a bunch of other times where I wanted to explode with laughter during the shoot-trust me, Joeboy is hilarious-one of the times was when he was talking about his strangest experience ever; “I was in a toilet trying to pee and this guy saw me and while I was still peeing, he brought out his phone and tried to take a selfie with me and I was like bro…”
I’m not gonna lie, this shoot with Joeboy was one of the most entertaining and amusing shoots we’ve ever had, and I really didn’t want it to end but we had no choice. At the end of it all, Joeboy advised emerging artistes like himself to keep it real “keep it real with yourself, it’s not just about looking fly, there’s a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes, and also, consistency is key.”
Watch the full interview below:
Cover Story: Dammy Eneli
Creative Styling and Directing: Tokyo James
Photography: A Cup Of Mikey
Outfits: Tokyo James