Recently signed to ChocBoi Nation, Nigerian music sensation, Yung L, whose real name is Christopher Omenye, speaks to PREMIUM TIMES about his music career, challenges and more.
He recently featured in Major Lazer’s international hit single “Run Up (Afrobeat mashup)” alongside international rapper, Nicki Minaj, Partynextdoor, Baseline Music act, Skales and producer, Chopstix.
The past few years have seen Yung L ascend in his musical pursuit. Excerpts:
PT: Who is Yung L?
Yung L: Yung L is an Afro dancehall artiste and performer from Nigeria.
PT: What was it like growing up?
Yung L: Growing up was basic and alright. Grew up in Jos. Born and bred. Last of a family of 5. Primary, secondary, university all in Jos. Mum and Dad separated. So grew up with mum.
PT: How did you come about your moniker Yung L?
Yung L: I got the name Yung L from my friends in Secondary school (FGCJos). It started out as Don Eltin, then EL. Later Yung and from there Yung L.
PT: We hear you were once a medical student at the University of Jos, how were you able to combine both at the time?
Yung L: Combining both of them was difficult. Tried it for four years. Had to drop out and later enrolled in accounting. I just recently graduated.
PT: You’ve been in the industry for a while with many singles out there, when are you considering putting out a full body of work?
Yung L: My album is out in August. It’s called Better Late Than Never.
PT: It has been a long time coming, from J Town (Jos) to gidi (Lagos), what has kept you going?
Yung L: The love of music and creativity has kept me moving. Also love from my fans. Marleyarmy.
PT: Who would you say has been a major influence on your music?
Yung L: Everything I’ve been through and everything I see.
PT: Do you do music for a particular target audience?
Yung L: No I don’t. I just make music from inside and whoever gets it, gets it.
PT: Congrats on your new deal will CBN, how did you secure the deal to become a creative director?
Yung L: I already co-own a creative agency. And it’s quite obvious that creativity is my thing so it was easy to get both deals.
PT: Would you say your relationship with Ice Prince and M.I influenced the deal?
Yung L: Not really. We’ve been in talks for years. I just wasn’t ready for a label then. Needed to groom myself more. Now I’m ready.
PT: In your opinion, what would you say is a major setback or problem in the Nigerian music industry?
Yung L: Lack of proper structure.
PT: What is your most embarrassing moment as an artiste?
Yung L: Getting bounced from gigs where my name was on the list but the bouncers refused. Same gig DJ played the wrong song on stage.
PT: Do you ever feel you’re underrated and unappreciated in the music industry?
Yung L: Underrated?. No!. Unappreciated?. Yes
PT: How is the relationship between you and the rest of the Grip Boyz?
Yung L: We are family. Always have. Always will.
PT: You seem to be the most active GRIP Boy, what about Endia and J. Milla?
Yung L: Endia is great!!. He’s coming with a bang!!
PT: As far as being a musician is concerned, what do you hope to achieve with your music?
Yung L: I wanna take my music and sound to the very top of the world. Number 1!!!
PT: What should we expect from you now that you are a Choc Boi.?
Yung L: Expect more Vibes. And the album in August!!
PT: If you weren’t a musician what else would you be doing?
Yung L: I’d be a farmer.
PT: Jos is like a hub for raving talents in Nigeria but it seems the buzz has dropped. What would you say has been the issue?
Yung L: Obviously the different crises. But that’s in the past now. JTOWN is back on her feet.
PT: Wizkid has put Nigeria on the map internationally; do you think other Nigerian artistes are doing enough to keep us there?
Yung L: Of course they are. We are spreading the African vibe. It’s moving like fire!!
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