Veteran Fuji gospel artiste, Mike Abdul, opens up to the host of #TheWorshipPlaylist and founder of Joy Inc., Chude Jideonwo, on how he has maintained his sound and music style despite the decline of the Fuji genre.
Mike Abdul said that his ability to recognise and accept the change in generations and culture has helped him stay relevant and keep the Fuji spirit alive.
“Not only gospel music, but also secular music does not have a lot of Fuji artists anymore,” Abdul said.
“At the talk of Fuji musicians, we still mention those of time past. The culture that drove Fuji music was the Mushin people. Those days in the danfo, it was only Fuji music that was being played in the buses. It didn’t matter if you liked it or not – you had no choice but to learn the lyrics because that was the only thing you listened to.
“The children of those drivers then attended universities where they started listening to the new generation of musicians like Wizkid and Davido. Whenever they returned home, they would come back with their new taste in music and influence the culture in their communities.
“If you remember, those buses usually had pictures of Pasuma and the likes on them, but their pictures have now been replaced with Wizkid and new generation artistes. This completely changed the dynamics of Fuji music and the environment that widely promoted it.”
“Of course, Wizkid was also wise to introduce elements of Fuji into his music, paying homage to the culture. Be it gospel or secular, Fuji does not have the prominence it used to have, as it only has representations in other genres.
“For me, I understood that cultures evolve and so we always have to upgrade. You do not reject culture; you understand it and influence it – otherwise, you will never be heard by that culture. That is why I am still here,” he added.
Mike Abdul has consistently propagated the gospel Fuji genre as he continues to release music that promotes the culture of expressing joy even in churches.
#TheWorshipPlaylist is a special series of targeted multimedia conversations and worship sessions with some of Nigeria’s best gospel ministers, focused on narratives that enable and strengthen the mind, heart and spirit. Amongst an array of guests are Monique, IBK, Frank Edward, Afi Douglas, Bukonla Bekes, and Obiora Obiwon. The show is set to run through to the 24th of December at 6pm every day on Instagram Live @Chudeity.