Looking for experience as a female DJ? Then the person to talk to is Nana Abedoh aka DJ Nana, one of Nigeria’s finest female disc jockeys excelling in a male dominated profession. The Lagos State University Diploma in Law graduate and National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) Law student forayed into the turn-table world after she was inspired by the performance of a DJ at a street carnival years ago. That experience ignited a burning desire in her to become a DJ herself and ever since she has never looked back. The Adavi Local Government indigene of Kogi State spoke with Entertainer on her career and she opened up on her recently released single entitled Know, featuring vocal powerhouse, Omawumi among other issues.
How did your journey as a DJ begin?
It started six years ago at a party, a street carnival. I was inspired by what the DJ was doing on the turn-table. I used to dance in secondary school and back then I always imagined myself being an actress or something else. But because of my passion for music, I dumped all those dreams so basically, disc jockeying found me and it started from that experience I had. This is my fifth year working as a DJ.
You’ve been doing this for five years, what are the challenges of being a female DJ?
My challenges were the normal challenges anyone with a dream to succeed will encounter. I believe in the saying ‘nothing good comes easy.’ One basic thing I realized early in life was that if you’re looking for something, never keep searching until you find it. If you have stones in your path, remove them and don’t turn back but forge ahead. That’s basically been the story of my life.
You’re a pretty girl, have you ever been harassed as a DJ?
(Laughs) Of course, I’ve been harassed probably a zillion times over. There’s this particular experience I won’t forget soon. I was playing at a show and because I had worked back to back I was so tired I moved backstage. A fan who had been watching me play walked up to me and said ‘hi and I replied ‘hello.’ He started chatting me up but I politely told him that this was the wrong avenue or time for this kind of chat. He instantly launched verbal missiles at me and said I was rude and almost hit me! It’s one of those things that happen on the job. You know, there are so many stories to tell.
What was your parent’s reaction when you chose disc jockeying as a career?
Well, my parents have never exactly been a part of my life so my choice of career wasn’t an option for them to oppose. I have pretty much been on my own for a while so my parents were not a factor when I chose this career.
How do you mean, are they late?
They are not late; they are just not a part of my life.
What was growing up like without your parents?
I didn’t say I grew up without my parents. I only said they were not a part of my life. I grew up with a lot of people. First it was my grandmother and then I relocated to Abuja at age seven to stay with my aunty who was a teacher. From there I relocated back to Lagos at age10 to live with my dad. My mom stays in the UK and has been there for as long as I can remember so she has never been a part of my life. All we do is just talk.
Recently you did a song with Omawumi entitled Know, what inspired that song?
My first inspiration was from God. And then I was also inspired by DJ Jimmy Jatt and the producer of the song, Bennie Macaulay.
What’s been your most memorable day behind the turn-table?
It was in Warri, Delta State, at an Independent Day event and I was representing DJ Jimmy Jatt. That day I saw the most amazing crowd I’ve ever seen to date. Every song sounded like magic to them and they were just so wonderful; it was so encouraging. -The Sun