How did you get started?
Thank you so much for interviewing me…It is amazing music was accidental. I came from a traumatic background.My dad was a polygamist and i was treated very badly by the woman that my dad had an affair with and abused by her family.
Long story short really when i started to fight back and knew that things were not right my dad thought it was best to send me away to live with my older sister in Washington DC..My sister the late Miriam Ikejiani Clark of Political Science Department and former minister of State FCT. and her husband at the time my brother in law the late… Dr Chuba Okadigbo was President Of The Senate Of Nigeria sometimes referred to as the OYI Of Oyi.
Now when Chuba’s younger brother John died in a car accident returning back to Virginia where he was studying medicine.. His death shook Chuba and he decided he had to return home to Nigeria.
Now when i was sent back to live with my dad i was still rebellious and fighting for my rights and mothers rights my dad then thought it was best to send me away to Montreal Canada.
It is amazing that people think just because one comes from a privileged background that things should be all roses noooooo.
Long story short my dad put me on on a plane and left me in Montreal where i continued in my education.Now my dad should have protected me. He did not he allowed the woman and her family to get away with the abuse. My dad did not support me i was then homeless in fact i reached out to the Maurice Cerullo Foundation and told them what happened and they did not help me. I looked older than my age i walked up and down St Catherine Street and explained to them what had happened. Now i started to perform at piano bars to secure a roof over my head and continue in my education. Well, i was part of the Drama Group at Concordia Universtiy and one day a producer came Mr Joe Lagreca gave me his card and i went to see him.
Now my God we then recorded my First Album that was released in my African name Uchenna Ikejiani….my Middle name is Carol…..Second Album Recorded The late Mr Glen Larusso came up with the idea that it would be best to Switch names and use my middle name because it would be easier to pronounce and call me CAROL JIANI. That was the making of Carol Jiani……I recorded the Hit And Run Lover Album that has now become a classic. Hit And Run Lover has become my signature song.
Simply music was accidental it became my most powerful tool for survival and that was how i started my career…ADA NDI IGBO “THE MAKING OF CAROL JIANI”
What made you realize that music was your path?
When i was younger my dad used to ask me to sing at parties and he was the one that introduced me to the Artist Millie Jackson..You know African Parents would show you off to their friends at parties but would say to you that you had to get your degree it had to be Medicine, Law or become and Architect….hahahahahaha so i guess the gift was placed in me really but it was when i was in trouble that my vocal ability saved me and i had to fight for survival and i knew that music was a powerful platform for surviving.
Who are your influences?
My influences God the late Teddy Pendergrass. Millie Jackson. Tina Turner. Fela…They just don’t make them like this anymore. In the good old days, we perfected our gifts by working hard…..
What makes your music unique?
As a Nigerian Recording Artist established in the West my music is unique in the sense that still following old school my songs have great melody lines..My vocals are far superior because i have been in the business for so long i perfected my gift and ….I sing live and i do not mime at shows..We must respect the fans because without the fans we would not be who we are.
The instrumentation and production are simply the best and classy….My music is uplifting and hey i can sing hahaha .
How long does it usually take you to write a song?
It depends it varies really one can write a song in 10mins it can take a year to perfect a song.
An example through the loss of my son Chuka that died from a rare form of Brain Tumour …It comes easy because of the pain i have so much to say to him …I have written songs since his death and it took me no more than 20 mins to come up with the melody line and lyrics.
Where would you most like to perform?
God, i have performed all over the world but at the moment my passion i would love and intend to perform in Nigeria. Using music as a platform to help raise awareness of how traumatic Cancer is. The lack of facilities in Nigeria all over Africa. The hospitals are not equipped the lack of working Radiotherapy Machines back home.
The plan is to perform there and use music to help make a change back home
Music and sports are powerful tools crazy as it sounds i would love to have my own football team…Getting the youths of the streets .To perform at the biggest stadium in Nigeria bringing all together for a great cause.
An Evening with Nigerian Recording Artist Carol Jiani at the Hard Rock Cafe Lagos..too hahaha
What’s next for you?
I have so much going on at the moment i am lucky. I have four singles ready to be released and also collaborating with other Artists.
On the 23rd of Feb my single is being released in Canada ..World Wide also.
I am looking forward to touring and using the platform to help make a change and let our people know their rights.
Healthcare is a priority back in Nigeria /Africa.
I am so grateful to the UK things we take for granted when my son was fighting cancer. The NHS the support from friends fans everyone thanks .
We need to make sure that we equip the hospitals God the list is vast.
One day i plan to launch my own Record Label and recording studio…Campaign for 24/7 electricity.
The list is vast get the youths of the streets so many young talented wasting away….thank you so much for a great interview and looking forward to Part 2.