BEAT FM 99.9 On Air Personality, Hypeman and host of Industry Nite, Jimmie, is also the anchor of a new sports show, “Living Legends Nigeria” showing on DSTV’s Africa Magic. In this chat with E24-7 MAGAZINE’S TOFARATI IGE, he speaks on his experience hosting the sports show, and he also dismisses the claims held by a section of the public that weekly networking platform, Industry Nite has not lived up to its billing. Excerpts…
How has the experience been hosting your new show, “Football Legends Nigeria” on Africa Magic?
It’s a bit surreal to be honest with you. Even though I have a background of starting off with TV, I’ve been off TV for a while and I’ve been doing radio. I’ve sort of gotten used to the life of a radio personality where you’re not really seen but heard. Being at the Beat 99.9FM has exposed me a lot, but the experience I’ve gotten from being the host of Football Legends Nigeria has been phenomenal. I’ve had kids come up to me, saying they love my show and that they want to grow up to be just like me. Parents also come to me, saying that their kids are crazy about the show. These are things that I dreamt about as a kid to be able to influence people and people having interest in what I do. I can only thank God, my parents and everybody that has been a part of this journey.
Here you are hosting a football show, but you also anchor entertainment gigs; how did the marriage of the both come about?
I’ve always believed that God gives you more than one talent. Your talent may be a mixture of a couple of talents. As a kid, I always looked forward to speaking in front of a number of people. I’ve always had the confidence and ability to speak in front of an audience, and that led me to becoming a hypeman for Hennessy, and that has also led to a progression of being a MC and event host. Thankfully, with the connection I’ve being able to make with my work at Beat FM, and the people I’ve known while coming up in the industry as well, I am very much in the industry and have hosted a lot of gigs. Yes, I’m a football fan and sport personality, but I’m also very much into music. I like listening to music, and I wish I could sing, but I can’t. However, I have a lot of energy and I try to pass it across to people.
Talking about Hennessy Artistry, we’re having two great artistes, 2baba and Wizkid…what should fans be expecting?
They should expect fire!!! It’s going to be an explosion of two of Nigeria’s untapped collaborations ever. First of all, we already know the simple fact that 2baba and Wizkid have never done a song together, and Hennessy is bringing that about. The Hennessy Artistry idea was brought about by the art of blending, and even as they currently run their club tour, which is taking supporting artistes all around the clubs in Lagos, Nigeria, they’re also expanding the market outside Nigeria; talking of Ghana and South Africa, so in all, Hennessy as a brand is not all about the alcohol intake, but it’s also giving back to those that make sure that the brand is recognizable. If you notice, Hennessy is one brand that is mentioned in most songs. It’s only fair that they give back, and bringing 2baba and Wizkid together is one thing Nigerians would never forget.
You’ve been the host of Industry Nite for a while now, but some people believe that the event hasn’t really lived up to its purpose of providing a platform for industry stakeholders to network…what do you have to say about that?
I think those that say that don’t really know who the stakeholders are. On a daily basis, those that matter in terms of the media, sponsors, established and upcoming artistes are all available every Wednesday at Industry Nite. What I can tell you for free is that when Industry Nite started, we had no sponsors, but right now, we’re battling to find spaces to accommodate sponsors that we have. Currently, we have Smirnoff, YSG Hubs, Pulse NG and Beat 99.9FM as our partners, and they give so much exposure to everybody that comes on that platform. I think it’s a baseless statement to be made when people say Industry Nite is not living up to its purpose. The purpose is bringing business and entertainment together, and that’s exactly what we’re trying to do. We’re not just limited to music; comedians, actors, movie producers also attend Industry Nite as well. In a nutshell, I don’t agree with that school of thought that says that Industry is not living up to what it’s supposed to be. Since I’ve been on it, I think we’ve been very very on point in terms of connecting entertainers with the corporate world.