Who is Willy Paul?
My name is Wilson Abubakar Radido. I’m 19 years old and the last born in a family of three children. My late father was half Tanzanian and half Kenyan while my mum is half Ugandan and half Kenyan.
I grew up in Area 3 of Mathare North. My dad was a carpenter and my mum used to work as a salonist before illness confined her to bed early this year. I dropped out of school last year while in Form Three and I have been supporting my family through my music.
That’s a big load to carry at such a young age, how do you cope?
I’m used to struggling. Even when my dad was alive we encountered a lot of struggles sometimes even going to bed hungry. My first-born brother is an Electrical Engineering graduate but he hasn’t been fortunate to get a job.
My younger brother was also supposed to join college this year but due to limited funds he is yet to. But despite the many challenges, we still manage to get by somehow.
A local magazine wrote that you get your clothes from abroad, how do you manage with so much on your plate?
It’s true that some of the clothes I wear in my videos are sourced from Atlanta but I owe that to an organisation which sponsors my music career.
Which organisation is that?
His name is Karanja. I met him in Mombasa during the recently concluded Groove Awards Tour.
So do you travel often to Atlanta to do your shopping?
No. Actually I have never been to Atlanta. He just sends me the stuff. Of course not all my clothes are from outside the country. I also shop locally.
Speaking of which, you seem to have a very deep Tanzanian accent in your songs, does that have anything to do with your middle Muslim name?
My middle name has been in our family for many generations. I should mention, no one in our family is a Muslim so it has nothing to do with religion.
As for the Tanzanian accent, I’ve grown up my entire life in Kenya so it also doesn’t have anything to do with nationality.
I was a fan of Bongo music for a long time so when I decided to sing Gospel, God told me in a dream that that is the style I should use. After praying about it I was able to put together some lyrics then I hit the studio.
How did you end up doing a collabo with Gloria Muliro?