More Branches Talks To Tobe Christopher Oti.

Self-Illustration of GDM by GDM.

More Branches caught up with Tobe Christopher Oti, multidisciplinary creative Lagos, Nigeria. We spoke about being GoldDrumMachine, his music, band and wrong perceptions in the culture.

Why do you call yourself ‘GoldDrumMachine’ ?

GDM : It was really random. I used to go by 808CR back then. I was making a beat with an axiom 25, and I thought to myself “it would be nice to own a gold drum machine” and it stuck.

Music and Art, your creative tools ?

GDM : For music, I use Ableton live as my main DAW. I use reason and FL studio sometimes. Art, I use the tools from the adobe creative suite (Photoshop, illustrator, InDesign), I also use Autodesk Sketchbook and Paint Tool Sai sometimes.

What do those two forms mean to you as a creative as forms of expression ?

GDM : Music is very special to me. Beyond special, it has always been my preferred form of expression. Music is basically everything to me. From my early years to this very moment. It has been a pillar of sanity for me. Art too. I’ve been drawing since forever. Music and art, I’d say are the best gifts from God asides the ability to feel and free will. Its all interdependent because these God given means of expression allows us to feel things on levels we wouldn’t be able to comprehend normally. Self expression is everything.

What wrong perceptions about the culture would you like to change ?

GDM : The status quo that people say you must follow to succeed, the rulebook, there are no rules. All I have is my perception and my abilities. It’ll be glorious if everyone stays true to themselves. No room for conformity. There are so many talents out here. There are so many people, so many stories untold. We can only progress by lifting our neighbours up. Working together to achieve a mutual goal. Africa has been in the limelight for a while now. If there was any time to show the world what it really means to be from this end, what it really means to be African, what it really means to be born and bred in this culture, then that time is now. What a time to be alive though.

What’s ‘ArtSquare’ ?

GDM : Art Square is basically a collective spanning from producers, to instrumentalists to artists, to dancers. It’s a creative community/family out of Ilorin, Kwara state basically. TNAF was created from that community, and it’s been progress since its inception.

What’s different about ‘To Name A Few’ ?

GDM : The music, the vibe Brumeh and I started TNAF with the sole purpose of experimenting. We have no limits, we have no box, we are led by nothing but creativity and our desire to innovate with sound. If I’m being honest, ‘To Name A Few’ was really inspired by Damon Albarn and what he did with the ‘Gorillaz’. We’ve been working and we’ll let the music speak for itself. We’d like to thank everyone that listens to our music however. Its a blessing really.

Why must we all aim at changing our world ?

GDM : The world needs more positivity. We need to aim at changing our world so we can teach those that come after us the power we truly possess. The “new age” is already inspiring a shift. It might not be on a large scale yet but it really is. I’ve seen this firsthand. Young talents are daring to dream, and they aren’t stopping there. They are making moves. I like to think of the new age term as a catalyst. A title behind the movement, Something for the youth to rise up to.

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