Zinnia is a Nigeria based Cameroonian TV host and singer. In an exclusive chat with Kinnaka’s Blog, the eccentric entertainer spoke about the Cameroon Entertainment Industry.
KB – There was a rumour earlier this year that you have abandoned your TV career for music. Can you clarify that?
Abandon??? That’s a strong word in this situation. Doing TV and music together, a lot of people thought it was confusing and made it hard to place me. Though good, at some point I thought it wise to put one in the front, so I decided to put music. Abandon TV??? Naaaaaa I’m just focusing on my music at the moment. There just might be something about to hit your screens…
KB – So which one is your first love, music or TV hosting?
There’s enough space in the sky to accommodate all birds and their different species. Be it eagles or owls. Media and music fall under one family tree… I love both but like I said, I’m pushing and putting the music ahead at the moment…
KB – You have worked in two of Africa’s biggest Entertainment scenes (that is Nigeria and South Africa), what do think the Cameroon entertainment industry can copy from these scenes?
You know… In other to copy, you have to know what you are copying, in what direction you have to copy, and what needs to be replaced or added… You have to have something before you think of copying. With the little knowledge I have about the entertainment gathered from my experience… There’s nothing to copy. Cuz we have nothing on the ground yet. We just have very talented segregated people with a direction only in their careers but not in building a legacy we will be remembered for as a country. Let’s build one first, then we can decide on what to copy.
KB – Are you saying there is lack of patriotism and unity in the Cameroon Entertainment Industry?
The few people trying to make an impact and lay a foundation are almost looking at their efforts as wasted cuz we as a people, don’t even accept some of ours.
KB – So what do you think should be done to improve the industry?
This is a very difficult one. I’m a part of this industry and it saddens my heart to see or know that with the marvelous content we have, we are still thinking of ways to put a mark on the map. The few people who try to take the code 237 further, get insulted and beefed right out of their careers… Everyone keeps seeing it as their thing, my thing, her thing, his thing… There’s no “OUR” in the picture. Cameroon companies don’t even take a piss with artists. I don’t know if it’s the fear for credibility or the artists’ life span… A foreign brand will come in and endorse an artist that has grown right before their eyes and I bet some of those CEO’s know some of our lyrics. The media houses take the stress to a brand new level. They associate with big names only, the rest apparently will have to pay a fortune. Thank God for the few who have taken upon themselves to support and promote us, we see you. Sincerely, there’s nothing to improve cuz we don’t have anything. You have to work on a project and see how it goes before you know where and how to improve on it. Let’s start one first.
KB – What projects are you working on now?
There’s so much in the pipeline… Taking over a big and strong industry in Africa requires a lot. I received a DM (message) from a fan few days ago, telling me that after just one song that hasn’t even ‘blown‘, I’m out of inspiration… I was tempted to pay his ticket to hell and a bag of fucks but I took a chill pill. You see, what these people fail to understand and do not know, is the amount of pressure artists are under… All they want is new music. Music they won’t even buy. No one is asking for an iTunes or Spotify link… only Youtube. Anyways… Something major is in the works.
KB – Tell us 3 things we don’t know yet about you.
I can’t watch football for more than 5 mins but I scream when everyone else is screaming, get mad when everyone is and hate the footballer or coach the majority is hating on.
Laugh when I’m crying… you’ll not take me serious if you are looking at me.
I DON’T like phone calls. But oh well…
KB – Who is your favourite young generation Cameroonian celebrity?
In Africa that will be me… I’m not so young but since my return I’ve just been months in. You know a lot of these artists believe they’ve arrived, I might mention someone who to me is new generation but he or she believes they are a legend. So I assume position oh.
KB – What are your pet peeves and guilty pleasure?
Too much spittle when kissing. Be it with me or if I see it. Guilty pleasure… hmmmmm lol if I told you, it won’t be my guilty pleasure anymore.
KB – Who are you dying to interview?
In my TV host shoes, in the African entertainment industry, I have a lot of questions to ask the P-square brothers and Tiwa Savage. In Cameroon, Jovi and Stanley Enow on the same set.
KB – Talking about Jovi and Stanley, it’s been heated between them lately, what’s your take on that?
Errrr… Kiki, you are putting me on the spot now. Very soon you will say I’m using their beef to “follow the ladder”. These guys have made so much sacrifices in this industry and are supposed to be reaping off those sacrifices now… One side we see action on the other side we see words… But both are building a legacy that young rappers are supposed to refer to and feed off. But noh massa, e be like say na only action and words we go di see o. One of them will definitely get tired. I leave that option to you and or them.
KB – What was it like to work with Stanley Enow on Bongo?
Kingkong!!! The only Camer artists people know all over Africa and out… Talking from my experience though. Working with Stan was one of the best things that happened to the relaunch of my music career. He is someone that has always supported me through my journey and this was just an icing. We had a few hitches naturally but thank God for maturity, we didn’t give the blogs fresh meat to make beef stew. It was an amazing experience and shout out to Nkeng Stephen for dope visuals. Stan you I Adore You and I Pray For You.
KB – Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I take it one day at a time. I do have long-term goals and plans and pictures of where I’d love to be, but I’ve made a conscious decision to take it one day at a time. Enjoy the beauty and the journey life is paving for me and my loved ones while I’m at it.
KB – Thanks for your time.
You are welcome