Until his unsavoury outburst at the last Ghana Music Awards which underlined his controversial character and set tongues wagging against him, Shatta Wale was not a name many would have loved to scream out at a concert.
Well, that definitely is not the case these days. The self-acclaimed dancehall king has taken over the airwaves with his music and endeared himself to many with his attention-catching commandeering stage performance. He is ‘the man of the moment.’
It is a feat that has attracted widespread rumours of Shatta Wale sourcing ‘supernatural’ powers for his present successes. The dancehall man, however, dismisses those assertions.
He told Showbiz last Tuesday that though he had heard of such stories floating around, he was not perturbed. To him, the existence of those rumours indicate that he was doing something right which had knocked out everyone on the music scene.
“I have not done any ‘juju’. I have heard of all those comments and speculations but they are not true. In this world, everything is about perseverance and motivation.
“When you persevere, you conquer and that is what has brought me this far. I have been around music and show business for a long time and I’m more focused now than ever before.
“I have had many people say that I have swallowed a copy of the Koran. Some say I have simply sought spiritual fortification through the Koran but that is not true.”
He has been praised for saving the otherwise poorly organised 4syte Music Video Awards over the weekend with his outstanding performance on the night. He toldShowbiz he feels possessed anytime he mounts the stage to perform.
“Before I step on stage, I communicate with God and ask for power to deliver well. I feel possessed and get crazy on stage, especially when I see the fans chant my name. I will definitely feel down when I come on stage and people do not hail me,” he stated.
Known previously as Bandana, the artiste said he changed his name to depict his maturity and the new direction he intended to give his music.
“Shatta in Jamaica means ‘killer.’ For me, however, I see the positive side of every situation so my Shatta means ‘serious’ and it shows that I am a serious and focused artiste”.
Shatta Wale, who went into hiatus after releasing his Mokohoo (Bandana from Ghana) track in 2005, said that he used that period of absence to improve his skills as a musician and a performer.
He courted the anger of the public last May during the Ghana Music Awards when he hurled insults at the organisers, Charterhouse for not clinching the Dancehall Artiste of the Year. The award went to Kaakie.
He, however, parried the view that his behaviour at the event was a publicity stunt that has helped him hit the limelight.
Describing himself as a humble and quiet person, the 30-year-old artiste said his real nature was contrary to the general belief that he was rowdy and hard-core.
“I love to create. I am a good actor and I love to act but I am a very quiet person who loves to be in my shell”.
Asked if he was looking forward to any awards after stating publicly that he didn’t expect any, Shatta Wale remarked that if the industry was ready to honour him for his hard work, he was ready to accept it.
“The question is: will they be transparent? I have gotten to a level in my career that I don’t bother about awards. It is a worry for me to feel that I need to get something which I don’t.”
Real name, Charles Nii Armah Jnr, Shatta Wale is a product of Seven Great Princess Academy in Accra and Winneba Secondary School. He has six albums to his credit and hopes to release another one early next year.
According to him, though his fans make him feel he is the best artiste in Ghana at the moment, he is not making that get to his head.
It is his ambition, he states, to be a recognised brand and conquer the world with his music in the next five years.