“The idea was Sheebah’s. One day she just called me and told me about the project, and I was very okay with it,” local R&B sensation Bruce Melodie says of the genesis of his latest collaboration with Ugandan dancehall sensation Sheebah Karungi.
Titled ‘Embeera Zo’ (Luganda for ‘your ways’), the song was produced by Ugandan beat maker Artin Pro. The video, by Ugandan video producer Sasha Vybz, drops this Friday.
The audio is already gaining airplay on local FM radio airwaves.
A dance video clip of the song posted on Youtube brings the song to life with well-choreographed moves.
‘Embeera Zo’ is a fusion of Bruce Melodie’s smooth R&B style with Sheebah’s own club-banging dancehall style. ‘Ezo embeera zo’, nkwagala mungeri yange nayiga embeera zo … goes the song’s simple and catchy Luganda chorus, meaning: ‘Your ways, I love you my own way, I learnt your ways.’
The two artistes sing the chorus in succession, and to his credit, Bruce Melody nails it flawlessly.
“Sheebah is an artiste who is massively popular in the region. She is very good at dancehall, which is a style that is quite new in Rwanda. I’m good in R&B, so we just decided to bring the two worlds together,” Melodie further said.
The collaboration could be Bruce Melodie’s entry point into the mainstream Ugandan music market. Last year, he was a nominee for the Song of the Year (Rwanda) accolade at the HiPipo Music Awards in Kampala, Uganda.
Speaking about the controversy surrounding the song after Sheebah replaced Rwanda’s Charly na Nina, who originally featured in the song, Bruce Melodie said: “Sheebah contacted me two weeks ago while I was here in Kigali, and asked me whether I could work with her on her new song. I accepted the deal, and I immediately traveled to Kampala.”
“When we met, Sheebah told me that there is a song she was working on with Charly na Nina, but they had misunderstandings along the way, and decided to remove the duo from the project,” explained the ‘Ikinya’ star, adding: “I don’t know what happened because Sheebah didn’t tell me the details. So we proceeded with the studio work and shot the video, which will be out very soon. Then, I immediately returned to Kigali after that.”
Melodie’s regional status was enhanced last year when he became the first Rwandan musician to make it to the prestigious Coke Studio Africa collaborative music show in Nairobi, Kenya.