Retro Revolution: Mayor AJ’s Musical odyssey from Kanji to Stardomby Lovelin Kolawole

Mayor Aj is a time traveler sensation signed to Chocolate City, His music is an enthralling blend of retro vibes and modern Afro beats. Born into a family engrossed in music. Mayor Aj’s odyssey from choir rehearsals to becoming ‘Retro baby Aka bad boy is an attestation to his passion and commitment for music.
Embedded within his hit single ‘My Own,’ featuring superstar Blaqbonez, lies the poignant tale of Mayor Aj’s heart-wrenching debut heartbreak in the bustling streets of Lagos.

When did you start creating music, and what inspired you to start creating music?

I’ve been creating music for a while, like since my childhood, because I was born into a family of music people like my mom and grandma too choir a lot. But professionally I would say I came into the music industry like 2020, so that’s like four years ago, and what really inspired me was just like the passion and love I had for music because there is nothing else I’d rather be doing than making music. I think I found out at a very early age that that was what I wanted to do all my life, and I worked for it and I never look back. Yeah that has brought me this far.

So you were born into a family making music?

Yeah, my mom and grandma used to take me to choir practice, they’re still in the choir up till now.

I started playing the musical instrument from the church, I started singing in the choir, like the school choir then it was later on when I was in high school that I started falling in love with hip- hop, Afro beats, and all that.

What inspired your stage name?

For every artist, you know, like in the beginning, I had a lot of calling names that were just like calling names, and when I was like taking music properly like seriously, I wanted to find a name that would connect. A name that will mean something very important to me so I just decided to use Major because my dad was in the army but he’s late now and he passed on as a Major so I just used the rank in his memory, and the Aj is like the first two Alphabets of my surname so it’s just like Major AJ. Because my dad is very important to me, like you know Who I am today is as a result of his inspiration and influence on me and that’s how I got the name. I got the name Major Aj from my Dad.

What’s your surname?

My surname is Ajogun, it’s an idoma name so AJ is like the first two alphabets.

If you could collaborate with any artist globally, who would that be and why?

Globally I would like to collaborate with a whole lot of people. At the moment I’d really like to collaborate with someone like Drake, I’d like to work with Gunner, Travis Scott, Skepta, Caesar, you know I’d like to work with a whole lot of artists. My music has a lot of diversity and versatility like it is Afro fusion so, I’m a fan of a lot of great people, and it swings across different genres so I’m really looking forward to working with a whole lot of different artists globally.

How would you describe your music style and the message you aim to convey through your songs?

My music style basically and the message I’m trying to convey is literally like my story, like each and everyone of the song has been my reality like my first project Retroverse, like I dropped that project and it was a fusion of a lot of retro sound with modern Afro beat sounds, because me as a person I love to listen to a lot of throw back music, like I’m listening to Dolly Parton, Peter tosh, Freddie Mercury like old guys. I like to listen to a lot of old guys and not just the people alone. So I always love it when I discover a new legend that I just come across his music and I go through his catalog or her catalog so basically that project was a fusion of where I was musically and most of the songs like ominirascal, taboo they were songs about my interaction with females of course I’m a young boy in my prime so experience with ladies, some about love, some about heartbreak. The song with Blaqbonez was about my first love experience in Lagos and that’s why the hook of the song was “only a fool dey find love for Lagos” because I had my heart broken by Lagos girl you know so basically I’m just telling my reality and If you listen to a song like superstar on my project called retroverse like I was talking about my journey from growing up in kanji to how losing my dad really made me stronger and grow in tougher skin like the journey so far and that’s just the thing with my music. I’m not the kind of person to really say I want to be making the type of music that would be like sad music because I’m a very happy person. I’m a bad boy in terms of like yeah like musically, lyrically and everything, even with the girls type of bad boy but yeah my music still gives good vibes and I still love to talk about the pains and the journey that have been through, I always do that even in my project, I have a song called ‘family’ that I also talked about where I’m coming from and what inspires me which is my family but generally my music is good vibes, it’s my reality, my interactions as a young person coming from kanji to Ilorin to Lagos, living in Lagos making music, making art you know that’s it. My music is my reality basically.

If you could change anything about the music industry, what would it be?

If I could change anything about the music industry, I would just change the politics, I think the politics is one of the biggest problems in the music industry and it makes it very hard for a lot of the younger artists like because I was independent for awhile before I got to sign with chocolate city so I had to push on my own for a while before having the support and I know how hard it is with the politics and all so I will really like to take away the politics and just make it like you know, Because Art is supposed to bring us together, art is supposed to make us love each other but the politics is making a lot of beef and stuff go on in the game. So if I could change one thing about the music industry it would be to take away the politics.

What do you think about the evolution of Afrobeats in Nigeria?

I’m really excited about the evolution of Afro beats in Nigeria to be honest, I think like it’s really even a strong part of my childhood and growing up because when I was a kid, I used to listen to a lot of gospel music like Yinka Ayefele’s then at some point I was listening to 2face, African China then I was listening to like Banky W and there is so many differences like the evolution like from Alanta to 2face to Wizkid, Olamide. The evolution has been amazing and it’s so amazing how far we’ve come so basically I feel like I’m really excited for it and for someone like me, I feel like my sound is actually like one sound that aligns with the evolution of Afrobeats because it is Afro fusion so I’m definitely going to be infusing Afrobeat with a lot of sounds across different genres so basically I feel like this is the time for someone like me to just take over the world.

How do your personal values and beliefs influence your music?

My personal values and beliefs influence my music a lot because like I said my music is like my reality so
I try to be as real as possible in reality as well. So my personal beliefs and values definitely have a major influence on my music. If you listen to my music and take your time to listen to some of the songs where I’m writing a bit more seriously or telling a story, you’d get to actually know the kind of person I am, and I think that’s how it is. As an artist, your art should be a representation of who you are, and that’s what it means. So yeah, it does have a major influence on my music.

Could you tell us the story behind your heartbreak in Lagos?

Yeah, to be honest, it was just like my first. I just moved to Lagos in 2020, so it was like my first love experience in Lagos, and I really got let down. That was the first person that I was like having an emotional connection with in Lagos, and I really got let down in a very bad way. I’m not gonna go into the details, but I got let down so bad that it inspired the whole song ‘My Own.’ So you should know how bad it was, so that was what happened.

Are you working on any music at the moment?

Yeah, a project is coming like ‘Some kind things’ is the first song of the project ‘Badboy Major,’ the project is on the way, and yeah, cool collaborations, music from Major Aj like you’ve never heard before like I’m really excited and that’s what I’m working on at the moment. Like it is coming! Coming! Coming!

Is there anything else you’d like your fans to know or any message you’d like to share with them?

I would just say thank you to everybody that has been supporting me right from day one till now, thank you to everybody streaming the new music ‘Some kind things.’ Like watching the videos, putting your friends on, I just really appreciate it. I’m glad you guys like it, and thank you to Afrolit for this interview.

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