From starting out singing in assemblies, to the influence of Nigerian churches on her sound, we caught up with Dolapo, the British singer-songwriter whose latest single “Down” has put her on the RONIEBOND radar. The single which features WSTRN’s Louis Rei is the kind of feel good vibe tune that we love on our ever-evolving playlist. Take a deeper look at Dolapo’s style and influence…
Introduce yourself for those who don’t know you..
My name is Dolapo, I’m sure my name gives it away but I’m Nigerian and I am a singer/songwriter.
When did you realise that you had an interest in music and how did you get your start?
When I was about 14/15 is when I decided to take it seriously. I mean, I was always singing at my primary school assemblies but I never thought about it as an actual career until much later.
Do you think your Nigerian background influences you musically?
Oh 10000%! A bit of the Koko-Master (D’banj) never hurt nobody lool. Also from about age 10-ish my Mum and sisters moved to an African church which I was fortunately dragged to, that played a huge part on my musicality as well. It taught me how to make my melodies more interesting and dynamic.
Are there any challenges you face being a UK female RnB artist and how do you overcome them?
I would say being a female can be a challenge never mind the genre, a lot of people don’t expect that I can somewhat do it all whether it’s writing my own songs, holding my own using Logic X, or even being the brains behind almost every decision of my career thus far. I have had people literally say to me “oh so you’re not just a pretty face?!” and I’m like “no honey… I have a degree and I run this show”. I’m glad I’m starting to bumping into more boss-women in the industry though, we’ve always existed but I think we’re a lot less unapologetic about it these days.
We see you serving some lewks on the gram too, is fashion another interest of yours and do you think that maintaining an image is an important part to being an artist?
Awww thank you! It is slowly becoming another interest of mine. However, being a self-proclaimed studio-hermit, I rarely get the chance to really serve all my lewks (laughs) as studio can be 5-7 times a week and long days so I end up living in leggings or tracksuits. I definitely make up for that with a face beat though!
Are there any future goals and plans that you’re open to sharing with us?
Just tonnes more music! There may be an EP that I’ve worked on with some of my mates…
Are there any artists who’ve particularly influenced you?
Aaliyah, Jhene, Drake
If there’s any artist that you’d love to collaborate with, dead or alive, who would it be?
Drake, Rihanna, MJ.