Juno Kizigenza on his dream to be a formidable musician

Juno Kizigenza during an interview with The New Times. / Dan Nsengiyumva.

He may have just two songs to his name, but Juno Kizigenza’s musical talent is proving that the best is yet to come from him.

His first single ‘Mpa formula’ may already have won the fast-rising singer a vote of confidence from everybody who loves music since he dropped it in May this year, but his recent release ‘Solid’ cemented the trust and admiration that every talented artist deserves.

 

Born in Kicukiro District, Kizigenza is the fourth child in a family of seven, and grew up with big music ambitions from a tender age, with a dream to appear on the big stage.

 

“Right from my early childhood, I grew with a dream to one day become a great musician. I really love music and I want to keep doing it as a career,” the 20-year-old told The New Times.

 

Joining high school at Agahozo Shalom Youth Village, Kizigenza found a recording studio at the school and started to record some songs and write some for his colleagues aspiring to do music.

He used to perform live at a number of shows at school, performing his own songs and some songs of other artists, especially Bruce Melodie, the artist he admires most, to the extent that he would do covers for his songs.

“I remember when he dropped ‘Katerina’ last year, I did a cover of it in October and I posted it on my social media. Bruce reposted it and I guess that was his first time to see me or hear my voice,” he said.

Prior to graduating from high school, Kizigenza met a person called Nando, a former staff at the school where the singer was studying.

Nando has been closely following Kizigenza’s music at school. He was impressed by his talent and promised to link him with Bruce Melodie who was looking for young and talented artists to support.

“I went to see him and I showed him that cover and other songs that I had recorded, but with low quality but he loved my talent. He wanted young artists with a vision and talent and I think I’ve got everything that he was looking for,” he said.

“To me, Bruce is like a supervisor, a sponsor, mentor and advisor in my music projects and having him by my side guarantees me that I can’t release a bad audio song,” he added.

After he was convinced by his talent, Bruce Melodie pledged to pay recording expenses for all Kizigenza’s songs -both audio and video.

As he was assured with support, Kizigenza immediately switched to Soul and R&B from the Afrobeat style as he wanted to change the style of the music he has been doing since high school.

In May, just five months after he got management, his very first song ‘Mpa formula’ came out and went on to hit local radio and TV stations’ airwaves. It is now considered by many to be among the best summer songs.

“I never expected my first song to be a hit that much. I remember, when it was released, I didn’t expect that it would go that far. But I was humbly surprised by the power play it gained since I dropped it,”

“It went on to hit over 10, 000 views after just 15 hours.  Credit goes to producer Element who played a big part to make it a hit at such a high level,” he said.

His second song ‘Solid’ which he released a week ago, came to his mind by surprise. He had gone to the studio to record and he changed the idea of the song he was going to record when he reached Country Records Studio.

“I had a different idea but Producer Element told me a love story can fit in the beat he made for me more than the initial idea. In my mind I had a different song altogether. So, we went ahead, we wrote it and put everything together and we came up with ‘Solid’,” he said.

The future

Kizigenza said he is working hard to do the best he can to take his music to another level with the target of writing his name among the top musicians in the country in as few years and he believes he has what it takes to achieve his ambitions.

 “The fact that people admire my talent gives me hope and confidence to do better and I’ve got the support from the team around me and the media. I am hopeful that the future is bright,” he said.

editor@newtimesrwanda.com

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