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A new star is born: 19-year-old Suga scores BIG with new single ‘The Smiling Coast’
Home » News  »  A new star is born: 19-year-old Suga scores BIG with new single ‘The Smiling Coast’
A new star is born: 19-year-old Suga scores BIG with new single ‘The Smiling Coast’

She was pretty much unknown until few weeks ago when she dropped her hit single, The Smiling Coast featuring the country’s numero uno rapper, Gee.

Suga’s dramatic entry into the Gambian music arena has undoubtedly generated tremendous enthusiasm among music -loving Gambians. She was born and raised in England, her parents are Gambians.

The 19-year-old singer and songwriter is currently one of the most talked about young Gambian singers. What’s On-Gambia caught up with the rising star to ask her a few questions.

What’s On-Gambia: When did you first get into singing?

Suga:Hmm, I never got into singing; it’s something that I was brought into the world with mashallah. So yeah, ever since I knew I existed.

Tell us a little about writing The Smiling Coast.

Prior to me coming to The Gambia for the first time last month, I could only imagine what it looked, smelt and physically would be like over there. So I would say the lyrics were influenced on experiences family/friends had when they visited The Gambia. It was a beautiful feeling as a writer to have had this song develop the way it did. 

So last month was your first time in The Gambia?

Yes, yes it was..

Do you speak any local language?

I can speak wolof small small (laughs).

Was the releasing of The Smiling Coast an announcement of your arrival on the scene?

It was unexpected, but it happened. So now I can believe and say yeah, the release was my entrance to the scene. 

The video is just amazing and it is fast becoming 2014’s most watched video? How did everything come together?

Thank you very much. Well, before actually coming I had in the back of my mind that I may just shoot a little something, but was wary of the time I had and ideas were still premature.

However, my manager, ShyBoy and Gee just totally spun it around. Like, I can't even clearly remember what happened but 24hours after the discussion in the studio we were shooting a video.

Your fan base is widening every day. How does that feel?

I’m humbled. It feels surreal. As an artist getting a fan base is one of the hardest things. So already, I feel it’s an achievement but, my work isn’t near done yet.

What is it about you that sets you apart from other young female artists?

Hmm. I'd say my versatility. I’m able to adapt and put my own flavour and imprint on any material given. The Smiling Coast is a prime example. Also, I'm a performer, so the vocals you hear on my tracks are exact to the ones you hear live on stage, as an acapella and face to face.



Besides music, what else do you do?

I go to university and also work, those are the only excuses I've allowed myself if it’s not music.

What are you studying?

I’m studying Business Management.

So music is definitely not going to be a full time job for you?

Regardless of what I’m doing, music is my full time job. University and work isn't stopping me writing every day or as a whole making music.

What is your opinion of the current state of The Gambian music industry?

Its timing and we are getting there. I've seen and been inspired by a lot of talent in The Gambia. What’s beautiful is the support and encouragement Gambians are giving fellow artists so if we keep it up it will only be a matter of time.

How was it like working with the boys, Gee and producer, ShyBoy?

Amazing!  I’ll never forget the experience. It’s like I knew them for centuries. The bond was crazy. One of the most humble, respectable talented two people I have ever met. To be able to get the kind of love that I got from them was priceless.



Are you working on an album?

 I’m working on my first EP entitled Reflections - a short version of an album. Excited for it, releasing that in May Inshallah.

Finally, where do you see yourself in 10 years time?

I hope to be far out in this music industry. Tell you what, 10 years time come look for me, this same interview and we'll review my journey.

Good luck, Suga!


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