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Tomi Thomas, a pioneer of the new sounds coming from Lagos

Tomi Thomas is the reason why the soundscape of Afropop in Nigeria is changing.

Tomi Thomas released his debut EP, Patience in 2014, it was described as “a creative expression of his thoughts taking a year and a half to create in the quest of his befitting sound and aesthetic.” He took part in the GidiJand project involving artists from the UK and Nigeria collaborating on an album-length project. His second effort Black Couch LP Vol 1 was released in 2016.

In September, 2018, released Illusions, a EP in collaboration with LeriQ. In this interview with PAM, Tomi talked about his music, influences and plans.

What inspired your new song, Shaken?

Shaken was inspired by life itself it’s just a beautiful love story. With help from spax we made magic.

You featured in Show Dem Camp’s ‘What You Want’, in Palm Wine Music Vol. 1, I suppose you have been working with Tec and Ghost before then?

They are amazing creators and manifestors as well as musicians and business men. It was a pleasure to share their creative space and it was an amazing experience to learn and grow with them.

On your Twitter bio, you described yourself as a pioneer and I can relate to that considering how long you have been around since the Bag Guy P hit of 2012, I suppose you have been doing a lot before then, can you tell me about it?

Music has been a part of my life for a long time, I respect it and take it very seriously. In that view, I just want to push boundaries with my art and electrify the universe.

Tell me about how LOS started, how you guys met and how has the collective evolved in years?

LOS is a family business, we are all brothers who lived side by side. Boys who have grown into men that love music and shall always create and perform at the highest level. 

Who are the musicians that inspired you?

God, Nature, Sade, 1975, Jon bon, Fela, Bob Marley, Bumi Thomas, Wande Cole, The sun The Moon and The Stars.

What does feel like to pursue an individual career while affiliated with a group?

It is beautiful to choose to do what you love with the people you love and as well as an individual.

You left for Dubai around what time?

I moved to Dubai in 2013.

You are back to Lagos permanently now or you are still going back?

I live on Gaia and I move freely as I please with ease.

If there is anything you want to change in the music industry in Nigeria, what would that be?

I would like to transcend the sound scape really. It’s a matter of producing the highest quality of sound as well as getting that sound into the right channels to impact the universal market space.

Should we be expecting a project from you soon?

My last body of work is the illusions EP I collaborated with Leriq on the 6 track time capsule. It’s a beautiful piece of art. I am presently working on a curated playlist to purge before the album as that is presently in the works I am super excited about that, the album it is excellent.

Tell me about your experience of ART X Lagos

Art X I must say was a wonderful experience we worked with so many talented people who were at the top of their field in every department. We created amazing music and showcased it before a wonderful audience who appreciated the art form. I am glad I could have been a part of such a great event it was truly inspiring.

Read next: Falz released Fela sampled album, Moral Instruction