Interview without concessions with the artist Safa Diallo (debut, career, asset, overview of Guinean music ...)
The most listened to Guinean artist after the late Mory Kanté, on the digital platform Spotify, the Guinean reggae man Safa Diallo, continues with his art to proudly represent Guinea around the world. With statistics, his participation in several events on major stages and high-caliber collaborations, our editorial staff got closer to him to find out a little more about the secret of this brilliant evolution.
Despite his busy schedule, the Ramba Bax opened his heart to us to tell us about his beginnings in music, the strands of his career, his non-music activities, and his critical look at the representativeness of music 224 at the foreign. Read on to find out some points!
Introduce yourself for those who don't know you yet!
“I am Safa Diallo, from Cosa, in the country of Guinea. Dancehall singer artist, Ragga and Reggea, author of the hit Tired A Di Gunshot, (feat Capleton). I live between Jamaica, Europe and Guinea. Apart from music, I am an entrepreneur and a businessman, who has invested a lot in real estate, especially in Guinea. "
How did you arrive in the music?
“I arrived in Europe at the age of 15, and I got into music when I went to Spain. I was there alone without parents, I lived on the streets, there was a social integration center and that's where I started music workshops. It was a way out for me, so I wouldn't wander down the street. "
What are your influences ?
“I was very influenced by reggae music, especially Bob Marley. Rap also influenced me when I was little; 2 Pac, Kill Point, PBS ... I remember when I was little, I did not understand English, but I often did interpretations in my own way, for example, I took over 'Natural Mystick' by Bob Marley in Poular "
Just say your name, we immediately think of renowned artists with an international dimension. What trick do you have to get your hands on some?
" Yes ! When we speak of Safa Diallo, we speak of an international artist, it is because of this that I have already collaborated with many of them. And the secret in fact to get there, I think you have to dream and go for it, to give yourself the means to succeed. "
“I was fortunate enough to grow up in Europe, and that gave me the opportunity to meet a lot of people of international renown. My first trip to Jamaica was successful, and I had the opportunity to go to the Stings Reggea Festival which happens every year, and where half of Jamaican artists perform. It was the click. I had the chance to meet a lot of Jamaican artists besides touring with Busy Signal. At the beginning, I knew more Jamaican artist, and French. But in the Latino world, we also have our pawns, as a precursor of reggae dance hall ”
Today, you are one of the artists who proudly represents Guinea outside, what secret do you have?
“There are enough secrets, but we have to train, educate ourselves, be self-taught. Me, I started studying law in Spain which I couldn't finish because I wasn't in a family that could help me. But then I trained a lot, reading contemporary African stories, and much more. The world has become very modern with the Internet, and you can do enough yourself. "
“I'm one of the most multilingual artists in the world (for those who don't understand, I am one of the most language-speaking artists in the world). I sing in English, Jamaican patois, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Fulani, etc. And it's a peculiarity that makes me unique in Guinea, in Africa, and even in the world. Few artists his polyglot, even Chris Brown or Michael Jackson did not have this quality. "
Safa Diallo's music is less heard in Guinea, what explanations can you give for that?
“For those who know the international streaming platform Spotify, I am one of the most listened to Guinean and African artists, with 50,000 or 30,000 monthly listenings, and sometimes less. But unfortunately, it is not publicized here, and it gives me the feeling that I, Safa Diallo, am boycotted in my own country. And I think this is a complex of a lot of media, if not apart from Gnakrylive, GuineeHit and maybe 1 or 2 sites, can talk about it. "
“I tell myself that we underestimate ourselves, we have a complex, because often, we have difficulty accepting our local products. Otherwise Safa Diallo is respected internationally, I am creating buzz internationally; and why does my country not claim us? I would say on the one hand, there are media that boycott us. "
“They prefer to promote neighborhood artists, and forget those who are the pride of Guinea internationally. Knowing that I am not a demagogue artist, nor a licker, some are afraid of that. But my work internationally is recognized. And if Guinea has a recognition complex that prevents it from promoting its artist Safa as it should, there are still countries in the world that recognize me. But my pride would be greater if my country Guinea gave me more consideration or failing that the same promotion granted to neighborhood artists who make the buzz and neighborhood hits… ”
“Me, I made sellable hits internationally, like in the United States, Jamaica and all over the world. And I had the bad luck to work with bad teams. Otherwise when I arrived in Conakry there was Buzz d'ouf. I got involved with buzz and career killers, like Tidiane World Musique productions, which is why Safa Diallo is boycotted Guinea, but respected ”
“These days, I started my collaboration with Gold UP, who did a lot of beats by Vybz Kartel, Shenseea, Shatta Walle and a lot of Jamaican too. But there are only two Guinean media that have talked about this, because Safa Diallo works with one of the biggest production companies in the world. "
“When other artists buy Hummers (vehicle), everyone talks about it, I have a Maybach and several cars, but who talks about it? How many millions of dollars, who talk about it? I am an entrepreneur in real estate, who is talking about it? "
“But despite everything, I'm still the boss in enough areas and in show business. Today, I see a lot of artists getting into business, but I started in business before becoming an artist. I remain the only artist who invited the Belgian-Luxembourg chamber of commerce to invest in Guinea, who spoke about it? And even the government struggles to recognize it. "
“I tell you that when I go to Jamaica, I have my house. In Guinea, I have my houses, in Spain, I have my apartment and in Switzerland too… ”
“But in Guinea, I understood that to create a buzz, you have to talk politics, play the chameleon, a liar or a cheater, and Safa Diallo is not in that. I prefer to buzz with good work. All the same, big up, to the media which give strength to their artists. Imagine, if all the media focused on an artist for a week, this artist would necessarily have international visibility. "
Having toured in enough countries around the world, how is Guinean music perceived outside?
“After African ballets, Guinean music proper is hardly perceived, maybe a little bit in the sub-region. Because in fact, the artists are making hits, for Guinea, which is limited there, and a bit in the sub-region. Few Guinean artists are known internationally, and I am proud to be one of them. All the same the best known remain the African ballets and celebrate and regret Mory Kanté. Currently also, we can add MHD and Blak M, which have known as such. "
“Few Guinean artists are known internationally, and I'm proud to be one of them. All the same the best known remain the African ballets and celebrate and regret Mory Kanté. Currently also, we can add MHD and Blak M, which have known as such. But I say that the fault must also be assigned to the media, who must leave their complex and sell Guinean products. "
“Most of the others when they come to Europe, it's just to do concerts for their community, not on big stages, or big festivals in the world. That’s why I’m delighted to be part of this network, and I congratulate all the promoters who work to promote Guinean artists and music around the world. "
"The artists are talented, and the young people are starting to make products of international standard, but it is the communicators who are unable to sell their artists. "
How does Safa Diallo observe Guinean music in general?
“Guinean music for the moment has barely taken off, there are still one or two that are listened to. The young people for their part do the job, they release singles and clips, but as I have it, the fault lies with the communication structures, the media. "
“Finally, I will give as advice; if, as an artist, you manage to see views on the canvas, and your career does not take off, the fault is with your communication cells "