Music is indeed an amplifier and several artists use this medium to spread the word about poignant issues in the society. Lamboginny is one of such artists using their gifts and platforms for societal good.
The Afro-Dancehall artist and prison reform advocate has been able to successfully fuse humanitarianism and music, with the support of his wife Taccara Rae and their now growing brand known as “Ling and Lamb“.
Asides addressing the issues that go on in prisons with his music, Lamboginny decided a long time ago to visit inmates across the world to spread the message of hope and “just be that positive energy”.
This decision has led him to secure freedom for about 130 prison inmates since he began.
Lamboginny began singing in the children’s choir and has gone on to touch lives in Nigeria, UK and America, both physically and through his various social media platforms which boast of millions of followers.
Of all that he has accomplished, the highlight of this singer’s career is being able to use his voice and platform to reach out to millions of people across the world and thousands of prison inmates as well.
We had an exclusive chat with Lamboginny and he gave us a brief introduction to his life, music career, humanitarian works and his family.
He also tells us the best part about being married, how he gets through downtimes and how the pandemic has altered his lifestyle.
Briefly give us an introduction about Lamboginny
Lamboginny is a Nigerian Afro-Dancehall artist and prison reform advocate, currently based in the US. I was born and raised in Lagos State. I did my primary and secondary education in Lagos, Nigeria and I’ve been around doing music for a while now.
When did you start making music? And how did it come about?
I started off from the church. I remember I used to be in the children’s choir and that’s where it started off for me. When I knew this is what I wanted to do, I started looking for studios around my neighbourhood that I could record, which later grew into regularly visiting OJB studio in Surulere where I met a lot of people. Gradually, my brand took off from there and then I started doing collaborations with other music colleagues and all of that.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
Sincerely for me, I would say the fact that I was able to use my voice and my platform to reach out to millions of people across the world and thousands of prison inmates both in Nigeria, here in the UK and in America. You know, with my gift. I think for me, that is it. The fact that I’m able to continuously send out positive energy to make the world a better place.
What plans do you have for your music career?
Currently, I am totally rebranding my sound, thanks to our new Ling and Lamb family from across the world. Me and my wife recently became content creators and we have these beautiful amazing fans from all over the world, but mostly in the US. Because 80% of our fans are here in America, I find myself rebranding my music to have a more global sound.
I’m recording a new EP. Trying not to just make it about where I’m coming from, but trying to make music that anybody, regardless of your tribe, religion, class, can enjoy. That’s where I am currently with my music career.
Tell us a bit about the humanitarian work you do in prisons and what inspires them.
This is something I’m very passionate about because, growing up in Nigeria, you are constantly reminded of the negative, the non-functional society that you live in and I just wanted to contribute my own positive energy. I never wanted to sit down and just complain. I wanted to just be part of the solution. Different things happened and I just started organizing concerts in prisons.
I was very young at the time, but I felt very fulfilled. I felt like nothing else is greater than touching lives. And that is the foundation of my humanitarian work which later spread into various things.
I remember during the Ebola outbreak I was so scared that certain people were not taking precautions in a community called Snake Island. I looked for sponsors, I got on the boat, we travelled all the way to snake island to ensure that every household had a hand sanitiser and they were educated about the situation.
Anywhere I find myself, I try as much as possible to just be that positive energy. In my prison reform, so far, we’ve gotten freedom for over 130 inmates since I started.
I’ve been able to introduce my initiatives into the prisons in the UK and I’ve also done that here in America. I was set to kick off my global prison tour before covid happened. So covid stopped all of those plans. But I know we’re going to get back on our feet. Once the world is in a better space with COVID, we’re going to resume those tours again.
It gives me joy that I’m able to reach out to men and women that are behind bars in different parts of the world. A project I started from Kirikiri. I never knew that it would become something that I would say okay, I’m visiting a prison in Maryland, in Washington DC, New York. I visited Rikers which is one of the biggest correctional facilities in America so I’m just truly humbled that I’m able to use the opportunity of life to reach out to people.
How do you balance being a humanitarian and an artist with family?
Sincerely, these three are things I think that I love so much. They are part of my daily activities so I don’t even see it as a task. God blessed me with such a beautiful wife that understands my humanitarian work and my music are basically the same and I just move along.
For example, when COVID started in our community here in America, a lot of the elderly people within our families too were scared to come out. They couldn’t go buy groceries. Myself and my wife, we volunteered ourselves, we started buying groceries and delivering to elderly people within our community and giving to them for free. Then it caught along and people started sending us donations to support what we were doing. We touched a lot of lives.
My family has become part of everything that I do and we support each other. That’s how I’ve been able to find a good balance.
What has been the best part about being married so far?
Every aspect of the word married has been the best part for me. I got married to someone I love so much. We’re best friends, we play, we goof around. We can get very serious when it’s time to be serious.
Marriage is fun with someone you respect and love and they respect you as well. The best part of being married is every aspect of the word being married. I love every aspect of it.
How do you get through downtimes?
The first thing I actually do, (and I started doing that like four years ago now) anytime I feel down is acknowledge my contribution to what is making me feel like that. When I acknowledge my contribution to the issue, it helps me find at least 50% of peace. The ones that are not within my power, I just let them go and I just start dancing sometimes. I like to dance a lot. Most times, I just start dancing.
I could probably start singing, and before you know what’s happening, I move on away from it. I try not to hold anything or be in a particular position for too long because, at the end of the day, they’re just feelings. They become more powerful according to the acknowledgement we give to them. So I just let things just go.
How has the pandemic altered your lifestyle?
I used to be so pissed off with the fact that my tour got cancelled. I had several bookings. I was supposed to perform in Japan, that also got cancelled and few weeks into the lockdown, I was a bit pissed off. But then, I started looking inward. It gave me a beautiful opportunity to appreciate things that I never ever thought were important. I started paying attention to the smallest things around me.
It made me fall in love deeply with my family, myself. And it was during the lockdown here in America, myself and my wife decided to take our content creation very seriously and keep it original and relatable.
It’s been seven months since we started and that took off pretty quick. We have over 1.1 million followers now on TikTok. Our videos have been viewed about 153,000,000 times if I’m not mistaking. We started a YouTube channel couple of months after TikTok and now our YouTube channel is almost at 89,000 subscribers.
Every day we receive hundreds of emails from people from all over the world telling us how our content and videos have helped them through the pandemic. That has become the lifestyle and we’re just grateful basically.
When you’re not working, how do you unwind?
When I am not working, sometimes I just go back on our platforms and I read all the funny comments from different people. Peoples opinions. I just sit down, read and just laugh to myself.
Sometimes, I watch a movie with wifey or we probably would just take a walk. If we don’t take a walk, we might think of a new restaurant or a new spot where we can find something to eat. She’s my best friend… I love spending time with her.