The Gin is Ideal: Melodic Kenyan singer tells it all

Gin [Photo: Courtesy]

One of the most melodic female artistes in the country, Virginia Njeri Maina aka Gin Ideal has released a new ragga collabo with Ketchup called ‘Balance it.’

She speaks about her new stable, music journey and all things beautiful.

Pulse: You recently joined Taurus Musik, why?

Gin Ideal: I loved the fact that they focus more on African showbiz and have a wider reach and network across the continent - beyond just East Africa - and I felt it was time I spread my wings further.

P: Who reached out to the other?

G.I: It went both ways. My team got in contact with them and they had sought to work with me. The Taurus Musik CEO Ike Anoke was my friend even before I joined them. In my mind I knew that at one time I would work with them, so did they and so let’s call it perfect timing

P: How does it feel to be a fast-rising artiste five years in the game?

G.I: The industry is a journey. You can’t break out in a year and be the in-thing. I’m still learning. I feel so good and appreciate that people are connecting with my music and journey. People can feel the hunger I have and the direction I want to go with my music. There is growth and progress.

P: Rede was your ‘It’ moment…

G.I: Yes it was. I’m always grateful to Wyre for the support because he helped my fan base grow. Truth be told at the time I didn’t have one, no one really knew about me. The remix brought me a whole new perspective of the industry and a lot has changed in my journey since.

Gin [Photo: Courtesy]

P: Has your sound changed?

G.I: Yes it has. Starting out I was doing a lot of Zouk because I’m all about melodies and catchy hooks but that has since changed for my fans because it’s about them. I am more upbeat in my songs.

P: You recently toured Uganda; how were the fans there in reference to what Bebe Cool did to you?

G.I: The love was overwhelming and most people didn’t know what happened between us. The Rede remix with Wyre did so well in the country. I didn’t know that I have a big fan base there. They already love my new song Balance It.

P: So did you guys sort out the issue?

G.I: Well I can’t say much about it but we’re good now.

P: Talking of your new song Balance It, why ragga?

G.I: I don’t have boundaries in my music. I can do any genre but the decision to go ragga wasn’t influenced by my new label.

P: Do you have the social media pressure to live up to your music and expectations?

G.I: I just live my life. I don’t fake. My social media is all about me, fashion and good vibes.

P: Can we then say that fashion is your extravagance?

G.I: Yes it is. I used to be a model but I stopped. If I were a bit taller, I’d be dominating the runway.

Gin [Photo: Courtesy]

P: What are the must-haves in your music?

G.I: Sweet melody from me and sweet strings from the producer.

P: Do you have the pressure to ‘sexualise’ your content?

G.I: Music is art and creativity is all about getting a certain image to get a certain perception. Most of the time, the true Gin Ideal character comes out in my act.

P: When do you have a creative streak?

G.I: Anytime I’m a creative head, but the best time my creativity strikes in is when I’m in the shower.

P: What can you say has been consistent in your music since day one?

G.I: I would say good vibes. When people listen to my music they may not love me but the song will change their mood in a certain way and give them happiness.

P: In a performance, what would you go with live or playback?

G.I: In my show I’ll mix it up. I want to balance the two because there is everyone in the show there are those who’d like to see you in your element to get to know the kind of artiste you are and there are those who like playback.

P: What is the wrong impression that people above about you?

G.I: People think I’m hyped up in person the way I am in my music but I’m a laid back person.

Gin [Photo: Courtesy]

P: You’ve said in past interviews that female musicians are in a comfort zone, why?

G.I: Yes we are and that’s why some of us haven’t hit their potential. Moving forward I think we should do our thing and break the boundaries of what the society says we can and can’t do in our music.

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