Obisoulstar
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Obisoulstar

Chicago, Illinois, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2012 | SELF

Chicago, Illinois, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2012
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"Chocolate City’s exclusive interview with singer ObiSoulStar"

Born in the Windy City of Chicago, Illinois and raised in Nigeria, West Africa, ObiSoulStar is an explosive singer whose time has come. Influenced by a wide breadth of sounds -- from Raphael Saadiq, Prince, Fela Kuti, Jimmy Hendrix, Lenny Kravitz to Me'shell Ndegeocello. ObiSoulStar has blended all genre of music to form a melodic and delightful tone while delivering a delicious show full of bursting energy. He has simultaneously embraced and challenged listeners. As a musician and an artist, he refuses to be pigeon-holed musically or personally.

Despite his very busy schedule preparing for the upcoming release of his latest album, Obisoulstar took some time to sit and chat with Chocolate City.

CC: What's the name of your band and what is the origin of that name?

OS: Well my name is Obisoulstar and a portion of that name originated from the Igbo tribe in West Africa “Obi” which means heart.

CC: What' the names and respective instruments of your band members.

OS: I ride with the funkiest, eclectic band “Soul People”, one of the most amazing groups of musicians you will ever hear or see. With Shawn Wallace on keys, James “Cuz” Thomas on drums, Nick Jaffe on guitar and Terrance Lee on bass, they bring all my ideas to life and I can never go wrong. Plus I have two amazing vocalist, Bass Claiborne and Soroya Smith adding that extra twang.

CC: What genre of music do you consider your work to be? Who are your major influences?

OS: Now that for me is kind of hard, to put my music in a genre that is. My music is a combination of everything I love so when you listen to my album you will get a combination of Soul, Rock, Afro beat and a hint of Pop. As far as influences, wow there are so many. But if I had to pick a few then they will be Fela Kuti (the father of afro beat music), Lenny Kravitz, Maxwell, Michael Jackson, Raphael Saadiq and MeShell Ndegeocello…to mention a few.

CC: What inspired you to sing and make music?

OS: I caught my music bug almost like everyone else by listening to Michael Jackson when I was 5yrs old. I remember putting a little water in my hair so it would look like I had jerry curls then put a torn sock on my hand then moon walk like him. Then as I got older I realized it was a good tool for me to express myself since I was so quiet.

CC: Who writes your songs? What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs?

OS: I have been blessed and fortunate to be able to write all my songs. Most of the time it depends on the space I'm in, meaning where my heart is at that point or what I may be going through that will determine the subject matter. Like for my new album I started out in a different space but as I allowed myself to become open and listen more to Spirit, the songs are mostly about self-liberation and love.

CC: Could you briefly describe your writing process?


The release date is Oct 14, 2010 for the thirteen amazing songs CD - SoulRokinRolla.OS: If it’s an acoustic song I just pick up the guitar (usually at night) and start playing ,allowing the vibration of the strings and the warmth of the sound lead me to a place. Other times, I create the music by myself or with the band then during the creating process I start writing the songs. I can’t say, “Today I will write a song”. It never works for me that way,it usually just comes to me.CC: How has your music evolved since you first began playing music?

OS: Oh it has evolved tremendously. These days I find myself working from a different space, different energy, open and more clear with my direction while understanding that being vulnerable is okay. I surround myself with amazing musicians in Soul People and over the years cultivating to what it is today. My goal for people when they hear my album or come to a show is for them let go of all judgment of themselves and others letting the spirit and the energy of music flow right through them and begin to swirl around and around giving new life. Forget about all worries for that moment that you are listening to the album or watching the show. For afterwards, you will be able to deal with life just a little better.

CC: What has been your biggest challenge as musician? Have you been able to overcome that challenge? If so, how?

OS: One of my biggest challenges was wanting peoples acceptance. Wondering if they would like my music or me? Would they show up to a show? Etc. I overcame that quite quickly understanding no one can justify who I am or what I do, if you like what I do then you will be there. Sometimes you may think I do music for you but in all honesty it’s for me. It’s my therapy, it’s my way to release and come back to my center. While ministering to you I am also ministering and healing myself. My energy bounces to you then back to me… what an amazing time we end up having.

CC: Your upcoming album is called SoulRokinRolla. What does the name mean and how soon will the album be available?

OS: When you asked me earlier how to - Chocolate city


"Chocolate City’s exclusive interview with singer ObiSoulStar"

Born in the Windy City of Chicago, Illinois and raised in Nigeria, West Africa, ObiSoulStar is an explosive singer whose time has come. Influenced by a wide breadth of sounds -- from Raphael Saadiq, Prince, Fela Kuti, Jimmy Hendrix, Lenny Kravitz to Me'shell Ndegeocello. ObiSoulStar has blended all genre of music to form a melodic and delightful tone while delivering a delicious show full of bursting energy. He has simultaneously embraced and challenged listeners. As a musician and an artist, he refuses to be pigeon-holed musically or personally.

Despite his very busy schedule preparing for the upcoming release of his latest album, Obisoulstar took some time to sit and chat with Chocolate City.

CC: What's the name of your band and what is the origin of that name?

OS: Well my name is Obisoulstar and a portion of that name originated from the Igbo tribe in West Africa “Obi” which means heart.

CC: What' the names and respective instruments of your band members.

OS: I ride with the funkiest, eclectic band “Soul People”, one of the most amazing groups of musicians you will ever hear or see. With Shawn Wallace on keys, James “Cuz” Thomas on drums, Nick Jaffe on guitar and Terrance Lee on bass, they bring all my ideas to life and I can never go wrong. Plus I have two amazing vocalist, Bass Claiborne and Soroya Smith adding that extra twang.

CC: What genre of music do you consider your work to be? Who are your major influences?

OS: Now that for me is kind of hard, to put my music in a genre that is. My music is a combination of everything I love so when you listen to my album you will get a combination of Soul, Rock, Afro beat and a hint of Pop. As far as influences, wow there are so many. But if I had to pick a few then they will be Fela Kuti (the father of afro beat music), Lenny Kravitz, Maxwell, Michael Jackson, Raphael Saadiq and MeShell Ndegeocello…to mention a few.

CC: What inspired you to sing and make music?

OS: I caught my music bug almost like everyone else by listening to Michael Jackson when I was 5yrs old. I remember putting a little water in my hair so it would look like I had jerry curls then put a torn sock on my hand then moon walk like him. Then as I got older I realized it was a good tool for me to express myself since I was so quiet.

CC: Who writes your songs? What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs?

OS: I have been blessed and fortunate to be able to write all my songs. Most of the time it depends on the space I'm in, meaning where my heart is at that point or what I may be going through that will determine the subject matter. Like for my new album I started out in a different space but as I allowed myself to become open and listen more to Spirit, the songs are mostly about self-liberation and love.

CC: Could you briefly describe your writing process?


The release date is Oct 14, 2010 for the thirteen amazing songs CD - SoulRokinRolla.OS: If it’s an acoustic song I just pick up the guitar (usually at night) and start playing ,allowing the vibration of the strings and the warmth of the sound lead me to a place. Other times, I create the music by myself or with the band then during the creating process I start writing the songs. I can’t say, “Today I will write a song”. It never works for me that way,it usually just comes to me.CC: How has your music evolved since you first began playing music?

OS: Oh it has evolved tremendously. These days I find myself working from a different space, different energy, open and more clear with my direction while understanding that being vulnerable is okay. I surround myself with amazing musicians in Soul People and over the years cultivating to what it is today. My goal for people when they hear my album or come to a show is for them let go of all judgment of themselves and others letting the spirit and the energy of music flow right through them and begin to swirl around and around giving new life. Forget about all worries for that moment that you are listening to the album or watching the show. For afterwards, you will be able to deal with life just a little better.

CC: What has been your biggest challenge as musician? Have you been able to overcome that challenge? If so, how?

OS: One of my biggest challenges was wanting peoples acceptance. Wondering if they would like my music or me? Would they show up to a show? Etc. I overcame that quite quickly understanding no one can justify who I am or what I do, if you like what I do then you will be there. Sometimes you may think I do music for you but in all honesty it’s for me. It’s my therapy, it’s my way to release and come back to my center. While ministering to you I am also ministering and healing myself. My energy bounces to you then back to me… what an amazing time we end up having.

CC: Your upcoming album is called SoulRokinRolla. What does the name mean and how soon will the album be available?

OS: When you asked me earlier how to - Chocolate city


"ObiSoulStar electrifying performance and album release concert"


ObiSoulstar with Nick Jaffe on lead guitar.ObiSoulStar, the hottest new performing and recording artist coming out of the Windy City has released his second, highly anticipated and long awaited album, SoulRokinRolla; for your immediate listening pleasure.

ObiSoulStar's album release party, held Thursday, October 14, 2010 at the Wilde Hare at 3530 N. Clark in Chicago was an electrifying performance. His two amazing vocalist, Soroya Smith and Bass Claiborne were magnificent. The audience was alive, uplifted and thoroughly had a good time dancing and jumping around to the beat of the music. ObiSoulStar performed most of the songs from the album (“SoulRokinRolla,” “Yeah I can do that,” “Shakara,” “Message to a gypsy,” “Alive,” and “In this moment.”) and let the spirit of the music run wild.

Working in the affectionate style of R&B musicians and great artist such as Fela Kuti, Lenny Kravitz, Maxwell, Michael Jackson, Raphael Saadiq and MeShell Ndegeocello; ObiSoulStar trained vocals shine on “SoulRokinRolla,” “Yeah I can do that,” “Shakara,” “Message to a gypsy,” “Alive,” and “In this moment.”

The album is a culmination of tracks that will take you on a musical journey through the uniquely amazing world of ObiSoulStar. You will get to experience feel good music that makes you dance, encourages you, and also gives a glimpse into the real world that he comes from.

While chatting with ObiSoulStar, Chocolate City asked him to explain the meaning of SoulRokinRolla, the name of the album and he said, “When you asked me earlier how to describe my music, my usual answer to that is I’m a SoulRokinRolla. I think that embodies everything I do. When I perform I put it all out there and some friends use to call me Mr. rock star. So my music is a fluctuation between soul and rock, hence “SoulRokinRolla”. Any one can be a SoulRokinRolla; it’s almost like saying hey I’m the stuff.”

ObiSoulStar was right when he said, “I ride with the funkiest, eclectic band “Soul People”, one of the most amazing groups of musicians you will ever hear or see.” The band was outstanding! With Shawn Wallace on keyboards, Chris Paquette on percussion, James “Cuz” Thomas on drums, Nick Jaffe on lead guitar and Terrance Lee on bass.

ObiSoulStar does not discriminate on this album, there is something for everyone on this highly recommended and must-buy album with its fluctuation of songs between soul and rock.

Pictures from ObiSoulStar's album release party, held at the Wilde Hare at 3530 N. Clark in Chicago can be seen on ChocolateCity.cc Blog Facebook page. Please don't hesitate to tag and share your picture with others and socially promote ObiSoulstar's CD.

- Chocolate City


"ObiSoulStar electrifying performance and album release concert"


ObiSoulstar with Nick Jaffe on lead guitar.ObiSoulStar, the hottest new performing and recording artist coming out of the Windy City has released his second, highly anticipated and long awaited album, SoulRokinRolla; for your immediate listening pleasure.

ObiSoulStar's album release party, held Thursday, October 14, 2010 at the Wilde Hare at 3530 N. Clark in Chicago was an electrifying performance. His two amazing vocalist, Soroya Smith and Bass Claiborne were magnificent. The audience was alive, uplifted and thoroughly had a good time dancing and jumping around to the beat of the music. ObiSoulStar performed most of the songs from the album (“SoulRokinRolla,” “Yeah I can do that,” “Shakara,” “Message to a gypsy,” “Alive,” and “In this moment.”) and let the spirit of the music run wild.

Working in the affectionate style of R&B musicians and great artist such as Fela Kuti, Lenny Kravitz, Maxwell, Michael Jackson, Raphael Saadiq and MeShell Ndegeocello; ObiSoulStar trained vocals shine on “SoulRokinRolla,” “Yeah I can do that,” “Shakara,” “Message to a gypsy,” “Alive,” and “In this moment.”

The album is a culmination of tracks that will take you on a musical journey through the uniquely amazing world of ObiSoulStar. You will get to experience feel good music that makes you dance, encourages you, and also gives a glimpse into the real world that he comes from.

While chatting with ObiSoulStar, Chocolate City asked him to explain the meaning of SoulRokinRolla, the name of the album and he said, “When you asked me earlier how to describe my music, my usual answer to that is I’m a SoulRokinRolla. I think that embodies everything I do. When I perform I put it all out there and some friends use to call me Mr. rock star. So my music is a fluctuation between soul and rock, hence “SoulRokinRolla”. Any one can be a SoulRokinRolla; it’s almost like saying hey I’m the stuff.”

ObiSoulStar was right when he said, “I ride with the funkiest, eclectic band “Soul People”, one of the most amazing groups of musicians you will ever hear or see.” The band was outstanding! With Shawn Wallace on keyboards, Chris Paquette on percussion, James “Cuz” Thomas on drums, Nick Jaffe on lead guitar and Terrance Lee on bass.

ObiSoulStar does not discriminate on this album, there is something for everyone on this highly recommended and must-buy album with its fluctuation of songs between soul and rock.

Pictures from ObiSoulStar's album release party, held at the Wilde Hare at 3530 N. Clark in Chicago can be seen on ChocolateCity.cc Blog Facebook page. Please don't hesitate to tag and share your picture with others and socially promote ObiSoulstar's CD.

- Chocolate City


"Nigerian Rockstar"

Monday, February 19, 2007
The Nigerian Rock Star!

Erika and Monika Simmons, NBC5 Street Team,
(Video)


Saturday night, we got the opportunity to attend the Listening Party of our good friend Obi @ Tsuki Lounge. We won't pretend to be music critics but we can say that Obi sounded great, looked even better and put on a show like a self proclaimed "Nigerian Rock Star" should. Obi's CD is titled ObiSoulStar and quite appropriately we might add!


No shameless plugs, but if you wanna learn more about Obi, check out the link below. www.myspace.com/obisoulstar


Posted at 3:40 PM

3 Comments:
Anonymous said...
Obi did a wonderful job. His energy was great! He had the entire place rockin. I'm definitely looking forward to the next event. I'll be there nice and early. I have to get a better seat next time.

10:31 AM
Angelique said...
That was an awesome show. Im so glad you guys were able to come with me. We had a blast. Obi is truly a genuine, artistic, talented soul.

- (CHI)NBC5 Street Team


"Nigerian Rockstar"

Monday, February 19, 2007
The Nigerian Rock Star!

Erika and Monika Simmons, NBC5 Street Team,
(Video)


Saturday night, we got the opportunity to attend the Listening Party of our good friend Obi @ Tsuki Lounge. We won't pretend to be music critics but we can say that Obi sounded great, looked even better and put on a show like a self proclaimed "Nigerian Rock Star" should. Obi's CD is titled ObiSoulStar and quite appropriately we might add!


No shameless plugs, but if you wanna learn more about Obi, check out the link below. www.myspace.com/obisoulstar


Posted at 3:40 PM

3 Comments:
Anonymous said...
Obi did a wonderful job. His energy was great! He had the entire place rockin. I'm definitely looking forward to the next event. I'll be there nice and early. I have to get a better seat next time.

10:31 AM
Angelique said...
That was an awesome show. Im so glad you guys were able to come with me. We had a blast. Obi is truly a genuine, artistic, talented soul.

- (CHI)NBC5 Street Team


"AWESOME RISING STAR"

Obisoulstar1 rating since posting on Tuesday, February 20, 2007
in Chicago
website
(submitted by Coach_Niquenya ) Overall Rating

based on 1 rating Rate It



Coac...
0 Awesome Rising Star
Obisoulstar is a local Chicago artist with a soulful sound reminiscent of the good ole days. His neo-classical jazz compositions are filled with tantalizing rivets of dramatic melodies. His live performances are brought to a whole new level with a live band backing him up. Obisoulstar writes his own music and lyrics. He also plays the keyboard and guitar. Visit his MySpace page at www.myspace.com/obisoulstar to find out where he's playing next. - Coach_Niquenya , posted 02/20/07
- Chicago .Tribe. net


"AWESOME RISING STAR"

Obisoulstar1 rating since posting on Tuesday, February 20, 2007
in Chicago
website
(submitted by Coach_Niquenya ) Overall Rating

based on 1 rating Rate It



Coac...
0 Awesome Rising Star
Obisoulstar is a local Chicago artist with a soulful sound reminiscent of the good ole days. His neo-classical jazz compositions are filled with tantalizing rivets of dramatic melodies. His live performances are brought to a whole new level with a live band backing him up. Obisoulstar writes his own music and lyrics. He also plays the keyboard and guitar. Visit his MySpace page at www.myspace.com/obisoulstar to find out where he's playing next. - Coach_Niquenya , posted 02/20/07
- Chicago .Tribe. net


"Obisoulstar interveiw with Thatisfabulous.com"

http://www.thatisfabulous.com/index.php/fabulous/funk/14-music/38-obisoulstar

Obisoulstar
TisF spends Five Fabulous Minutes with Obisoulstar.


With a voice that really calms the savaged beast and swagger that could only be mimicked by God himself, this sultry singer/song writer and producer exploded onto the scene in 2000 with a breath of fresh air for the Chicago music scene. Born in the windy city of Chicago but raised in the western part of Africa (Nigeria to be exact), Obisoulstar is the epitome of a Renaissance man. His music which is like food to a starving ear and water to a dried up heart, reflects a man who has seen a lot, forgotten little and is not afraid to speak about it.


Obisoulstar takes his artistry any where time travels performing in places such as the Hot house in Chicago, House of blues chicago, Double Door Green Dolphin Chicago, funky Buddha lounge, The wild hare Chicago, The Shrine Chicago, Bowery poetry club New York, Blowout lounge New York, Black berry Denver, Trane Studios Canada and 291 Gallery London UK to mention a few. With inspiration ranging from the likes of Maxwell, Raphael Saadiq, Lenny Kravitz, Meshell Ndegeocello, Nina Simone and Curtis Mayfield down to Fela Kuti (the father of Afro beat music), Obisoulstar has merged all to form a concussion of melodic delight. "Its my way in to get out".

What is your idea of Fabulous?
O: Loving what you do and doing what you love...just being happy


Who is the most Fabulous person you know?
O: Imanii Uwakwe 'cause when the birds sing, they sing her name. In her eyes is the sunshine of tomorrow. She...makes life worth living.


Which Fabulous word do you use most?
O: Hahah dont try this at home but its "SHIBABULATIOUSNES". Yeah I made it up and it fits into every sentence, like " I cant find the shibabulatiousnes I left over here" or "All the shibabulatiousness is hanging out". It can mean what ever you want it to.


What is your greatest (most Fabulous) extravagance?
O: Lenny Kravitz tickets even though I missed the show

Where would you like or prefer to live your Fabulous life?
O: Right in the middle of a treble clef , I love wherever I'm at.


What do you consider your greatest (most Fabulous) achievement?
O: Having folks dig my music and style and come out to shows. Now that is Fabulous.


What is your (Fabulous) motto?
O: My motto(s) are "Do what you gotta do to get it done" and "Lovers of music are lovers of life, Lovers of life are lovers of God"

For more information about the Fabulous Obisoulstar please visit:
www.obisoulstar.com
www.myspace.com/obisoulstar

Photography by Kinga

- Thatisfabulous.com


Discography

"SoulRokinRolla" summer 2010 release

Obisoulstar "The one" (Independent debut release '07)

Self titled album "Obisoulstar"
(Independent release '08)

Also Available : iTunes

Photos

Bio

Born in Chicago, but raised in West Africa (Nigeria to be exact) Obisoulstar is the epitome of a Renaissance man. His music is like food for the starving senses and water for a withered heart; it reflects a man who has seen a lot, forgotten little, and is not afraid to tell the story. This 2012 Raw Artist “Musician Of The Year” Award winner has performed in Chi, NY, ATL, Philly and LA to mention a few including Canada, London, Paris, Croatia and Czech Republic. With his band ranging from 8-15 talented and established musicians, Obisoulstar has  opened/shared the same stage with the likes of Grammy Nominee Kem, Eric Roberson, Bell Bive DeVoe, Case, KRS-ONE, Sy Smith, Kindred the family soul, Ledisi, Tortured Soul and Reggae Legend Beres Hammond, Les Nubians, Rasaan Paterson and a host of others.

His music embraces the sounds of Soul, Blues, Funk, Rock and Afrobeat, merging influences from the likes of Seal, Pink Floyd, Lenny Kravitz, Meshell Ndegeocello and Fela Kuti (the father of Afrobeat). Forming a concoction of melodic delight while promoting unity, love, and spiritual liberation through music, Obisoulstar has coined Afrorock Religion.