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Quick Q&A With: Smade

PARTY TIME: Junior Adeosun says SMADE events are renowned for
giving people a great night out while championing the best Afrobeats music around – and sees the popular genre taking over in the next five years

DboyDayo: What does SMADE stand for and why that name?

Junior Adeosun: The name SMADE was originally created and formed as a company by my father in 1984. SMADE also means a lot of things but it’s a portmanteau, which is a blend of the words SELF MADE. The idea behind the name was to reflect the hard work and hustle that was a part of my journey into creating SMADE as a brand. And I believe it adequately responds to how the new generations strive to achieve or feel about their aspirations and work. It connects with everyone.

DD: What did you do before clubs and concerts?

JA: I was a full time student, studying marketing and advertising at University of Arts London. I was also a full time employee at one point and worked as an assistant manager in a menswear clothing store.

DD: How have you managed to remain the dominant force that you are within the Afrobeats music scene?

JA: Well, firstly, thank you – ‘dominant force’ is a nice title, but it has been through a lot of sleepless nights, hard-work and consistently delivering events as they are promoted. I have also got one of the best teams anyone could ask for. One thing I’ve managed to achieve is gaining people’s trust, which is very important in this industry. When I promote any artist I make sure that, at all times, I deliver not just the artist, but also a good production in a dope venue and give a good show. Basically, what we create is an experience. I’ve also promoted today’s biggest acts in the industry from their very first show in the UK.

DD: Why do you think the popularity of Afrobeats music has grown so quickly in the last five years?

JA: It’s been a collective effort from everyone. Firstly, it is our artists putting out good sound the competition between them to becoming number one is very good and brings out the best in them. Secondly, all promoters consistently promoting the genre through our weekly events and shows; the dancers, producers, presenters, managers, and everyone is out there representing the culture. I believe we are playing our roles and have collectively helped afrobeats get to where it is now. In the next five years I see our music and sound becoming number one in the world if it keeps growing at this rate.

DD: Can you describe what a day in the life of SMADE looks like?

JA: One of my bad habits is I really don’t know how to stop working, even when it looks like I’m partying or having fun. So a typical day could be filled with meetings, venue visits, liaising with the artists that are coming to the UK and organising the logistics around that; marketing the shows and club nights, sometimes radio and TV interviews. So it can get very busy.

DD: If you weren’t an event organiser, what would you be?

JA: In the world of business, the most successful are those that are doing what they love. Finding a solution to the challenges of humanity. So I’d still be an entrepreneur, maybe in buying and selling products/services. I come from that background, so it’s only right.

DD: What kind of obstacles have you had to overcome as a promoter?

JA: One of the main obstacles has always been getting sponsorship for the big shows; it’s expensive to put on a successful show. Back in the day we had to make sacrifices and we would just barely break even. Now, as the brand is getting bigger, the sponsors see us and this is really helping our logistics.

DD: With the music in mind, are you Team Wizkd or Team Davido?

JA: I’m Team Unity! I have been good friends with both of them for years and I’m happy the world finally sees their good hearts and desire for unity on display. They are both kings at what they do. They are killing the game, so I’m excited for what’s coming.

DD: Would you ever go into artist management ?

JA: Well, I am a businessman and I never say no to a good opportunity. You never know what you’re good at until the opportunity comes your way, so I’m always open to new ventures.

DD: What does a rest day look like for SMADE?

JA: You’ll find me in a bubble bath somewhere in the world – but my family is my resting place. My wife and kids always help me to forget the stresses of work. So we play, we laugh, watch movies and enjoy each others company.

DD:What other concerts or after parties can we look forward to this year?

JA: There’s a lot! I think we have got something every month aside from our weekly #AFROBEATSINTHECITY #SMADESATURDAYS at LaurelLounge.

Follow Dboy Dayo on Twitter at @dboydayo_ and @afrobeaTakeover. Listen to his show on The Beat 103.6FM on Fridays from 7pm to 9pm

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