Olanrewaju David Ogunmefun a.k.a Vector Tha Viper is one of the brightest rap artists on the Naija Hip hop scene. You may have heard him feature on tracks like Bigiano’s ‘Shayo remix’ and J Martin’s ‘Good or Bad remix ‘ ? Or you might have seen his venomous freestyles on Dj Jimmy Jatt’s show ‘The Jump off’ ? Vector is gearing up for the release of his highly anticipated debut album dropping in the first quarter of 2010. The album features songs like ‘Kilode ‘ featuring Emmsong and the latest single ‘Mary Jane’ . Our very own Pappy Dee had an exclusive interview with Vector today . Below is the conversation they had
Streetnaij: Vector welcome on board Streetnaij
Streetnaij: So Vector please can you tell us a little bit about the person behind the music?
Vector: My real name is Ogbumefun Olarenwaju David.I am a native of Ogun State but was born and raised in Lagos .I am the first born out of a family of five.
Streetnaij: Did you also school in Lagos ?
Vector: Funny you ask, I went on a tour of various schools in the country before finishing up in Lagos after attending St Gregory’s High School (Obalende) and then finally finished up at University of Lagos .
Streetnaij:Why did you become a rap artist and when did you really start to take the rap game seriously?
Vector: It was as far back as 1995 , I was kinda of young but there were these guys in my hood around the corner who used to rap .I really liked what they were doing then I began to put pen to paper and started to put one or two lines together and before I knew it I was rapping .But I am officially to be tagged a rap artist when my debut album drops
Streetnaij: You go by the alias ‘Vector tha Viper’ . How did that name come about ?
Vector: As you know the most accepted meaning of the word ‘Vector’ is a carrier of something .So I have been blessed or cursed with the gift of Hip hop to share with the people.Pappy if you too no take time I go make you self turn rapper as we dey talk now (laughing)
Streetnaij: (laughing ) Now that would be very interesting !! But seriously what about the Viper aspect of your alias ?Is it because of the sting in your delivery/flow?
Vector:You can say that again ! When a rapper is coming out you want a name that will make peeps say ‘This guy na bad guy’ . On the real that was what I was thinking when I chose the name Viper as well .So I am the carrier of music or flow that is so poisonous that it spreads and takes control of the audience or listener. Hence the name ‘ Vector the Viper ‘
Streetnaij: V.E.C, You now have your first LP called ‘State of Surprise ‘ . Is it out and what should people expect from this début album?
Vector: The album is about to drop in April this year.Yes it is called ‘State of Surprise’ because it was an opportunity for me to bring something completely different to what prevails on the Nigerian airwaves and provide a classic rap/hip hop album which I feel is yet to be done .
Streetnaij: Do you feel any pressure at the moment with this album dropping this being your 1st one ?
Vector: Not at all ! the only pressure is mental (in my mind) .Thankfully I have my management YSG entertainment who have set things in place for me to be a success.All I have to do is just work hard and do what I do best which is rapping . If I am not ready to cope with pressures of success (which I am ready to do) I do not deserve to be in the game simply put!!
Streetnaij: On the album you have a single called ‘Kilode’ feat Emmsong . What is the message behind the track?
Vector: Simply put Kilode is the truth , I know you have heard it !! and you would not disagree with what I said on the track.The message in the track speaks for itself
Streetnaij: But it seems on the track you take a few shots /pokes at some of most famous artists in the industry like Pype, Durella, Dbanj ,Timaya and Terry G ? Is there any lingering beef ?
Vector: On my side there is no beef at all. The song was not written out of personal emotion but because at the time I felt some things needed to be said to set the record straight by spitting the truth. So there is no hostility on my part.
Streetnaij: This leads to my next question .I know you get asked this alot but what are your feelings with regards to those who say you sound like Jay Z?
Vector: Sometimes a compliment annoys one not to talk about a comparism, so to an extent it can be irritating .On the real though people have a right to think or say what they want.But I sometimes ask these same people ‘Do you know I also sound like my brother too?’ Hopefully the comparisms are because people see traits of one of the greats of Hip hop (Jay Z) in me which is nice .Otherwise I am not really bothered by the comparism.
Streetnaij: Most record labels in Naija want artists to keep their music commercial by performing in vernacular or Yoruba etc ? But you are one of the few artists not going this route ? Whats your take on this ?
Vector: My only take on this is that you do not have to adapt your style to be successful in the Nigerian Music Industry. For example I am Yoruba , but I wont spit in Yoruba only .This is because I want a Hausa or Igbo person to understand my lyrics and not just listen to the track for the beat. I am also targeting a wider audience which is a world wide one so I use English as my medium.But saying all this I have incorporated some Yoruba and even igbo stuff on my album so i am well rounded . I just feel rather than forcing artists to go a particular route ,they should be given inspiration to incorporate indigenous elements of our music to their work.So I will not change my style to conform to industry standards for commercial success.
Streetnaij: There is talk about another single ‘Mary jane ‘ from your album can you tell us more ?
Vector : Yes Mary Jane drops today and should be making the rounds as we speak. you have to hear it !!!
Streetnaij: How about videos for songs on the album ? anything in the pipeline ?
Vector: Yes we are on location shooting a video and it should be out in the nearest future maybe even before the album drops
Streetnaij: Thank you V.E.C for your time and wish you the best of luck with State of Suprise
Vector: Thanks for having me Streetnaij !!
For the latest gist on talented Vector the Viper . Why not check out his page Facebok page ‘Vector tha Viper’