Desire Luzinda: One on One
Rumours about an affair with the mayor, what she feels about some of her sexy videos and about being a bad girl... Desire Luzinda talks about that and much more.
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First published: August 23, 2009
Continues from: Desire Luzinda: Do Not Compare Me to Juliana
Peter: So back to the music tell us about some of your successful songs...
Desire: Well there is Nina Omwami that I did with Ngoni... Nze nina omwami... (She starts to sing). There is also Mubiite...
Peter: What does Mubite mean?
Desire Luzinda with Mubiite
Desire: Mubiite is all about Love... It's a Luganda word that probably means... Hmnnn... Love. The song is basically about how to treat your lover.
Peter: The word itself... What does it mean? Lover?
Desire: Hmnnn... Mubiite... The word itself? (She laughs) I have no idea... (She obviously means that its hard for her to translate the word.) Hmnnn... It doesn't mean Lover... Its kind of like a general word... "How to treat a lover." So... everything that goes with that, how to treat a lover, is Mubiite. Treating someone nice.
Peter: Now when it comes to music in Uganda there is almost like two markets that you are dealing with. There is the local scene and then there is us in the Diaspora looking in. There are actually plenty of markets because you got the East African market, the African market and so on... What is your strategy to make sure you don't loose track of what is going on in one particular market? How do you plan to remain relevant in these markets?
Desire: Ummm... My career has just kicked off. People are just getting to know who Desire is and I had to first capture the local (she smiles)... before I go beyond. But I have done songs in Kiswahili... That was for the East African market... And I hope to do something in English soon. That is if I get something good in English. Slowly but surely... That's me.
Peter: Tell us about Nahisi
Desire: Nahisi is Kiswahili for "I wish." The song talks about a lover demanding for your time.
Desire Luzinda with Nahisi
Peter: Tell us about the video.
Desire: I did the video in London. Oh that video... my gawd... You wouldn't love to see it.(She laughs)
Peter: Ummm... I think I've seen it. Is that the one where you are dressed very "nicely"...(She is still laughing and confirms by nodding)... yeah... I've seen it.
Desire: Yeah... It was done in London last year.
Peter: Why London?
Desire: Before I left for London I had not released the song... And since I had the song with me I opted to do the video for it there. And you can see that the whole idea of it is different from what is... "home." I don't know what people think of it. Personally I look at the video and laugh. (You can tell that the laughter is coming from a slight embarrassment.)
Peter: Is it because you look very sexy in the video?
Desire: Hmnn... Hmnnn... I don't think a parent should let their children watch...
Peter: So do you agree with the video? Would you have done something different?
Desire: Well... maybe if I were here... But you know... those guys were like "No... Do something different." So I had to... I had to... They were the boss. You know out there they think certain things are ok but down here it doesn't work. It didn't even get much air play because of that... Too much sort-of-like romance... But I personally don't have a problem with it. A lot of people found it quite obscene...
Desire: Ummm... Yeah... You should watch it again. (More laughter) I don't have a problem with it. I love it.
Peter: Who is the guy in the video?
Desire: He is called... I can't even remember his name... I think Isaac. We haven't talked since then. He was my friend... He became my friend... but we have not been in touch... He probably became too busy.
Peter: It's a sharp contrast to the video you did with Ngoni which some complained was not sexy enough...
Desire: With Ngoni they needed something that went back to the roots because there are so many westernized videos going out today. I remember on location, the Ngonis got there before me... somewhere in Nakawa. And while they were setting up the locals were arguing, "Ah... Desire can't come here." They were surprised when I showed up... Of course for me there was no problem. Perhaps it gave the locals there that understanding that I can mix with them. You could see from the way they were taking the drink... We "mixed up" really well. I love the video!
Nina Omwami by Ngoni ft Desire Luzinda
Peter: Well... some complained that they covered you up too much in that video... Sort of made you less Desire-able
Desire: Hmmn... Yah... That's what we wanted. Cuz if you look at all my videos you see me "clearly" well... with all sorts of outfits. But here I simply had a wrapper on - far different from the usual. Personally I love the video and in fact the video made me more attached to the song. So... for those who think it was not right, I think they should change their mind. (Smiles)
Actually those that don't like that video should be happy with the current video which I did with Blueprints... Lovely video... Lovely colors... The outfits are lovely.
Peter: What would you have been if you were not in music?
Desire: Music has always been my dream. When I was younger I had thoughts of leaving the country. I was a party girl then and I would say when I grow up I would not be in Uganda, I'll have a lot of fun... I will not have kids. That was the old me.(She laughs) I didn't want to get married... I just wanted to have a Blast!! Work and party till I drop.
Peter: So where did you hang out back then as a party girl... Ange?
Desire: I went wherever...(She laughs) Apart from the streets. Everywhere... as long as there was a party. My life changed at nineteen when I gave birth. I started looking at life from a different angle. I had to settle down. I had to look for money. Somehow I became more organized and got into my reality. I can say I am living my dream now.
Peter: Is your husband still your manager? Does he do it full time?
Desire: Yes... He is my manager but he does not do it full time... He is an engineer... He has his own company. He just hasn't found that right person for me who can do what he does. Definitely if we could find the right person to manage my career, we would take them on and relieve him of the work because he is very busy. Sometimes he has conflicts in his schedules... He just sacrifices.
Peter: How long have you all been married?
Desire: Three years...
Peter: Any children?
Desire: I have one kid... Not with him... Michelle... She is five years old.
Peter: How is Michelle taking her mother's success?
Desire: You wouldn't love to hear this..(She is laughing.) But the other day she was telling me... "Can you believe my teacher calls me Celeb?" I laughed... and I asked her, "Do you know what that means?" She was like... "No... I don't. But I don't like it." And this morning when I was taking her to school I was like, "Bye Celeb..." and she was like... "Mom! Don't call me Celeb."
So... hmnnn... I know she knows that I am a musician... She loves it! And I don't mind it when she appears in an article... Like sometimes when they come to interview me at home and they are going through my closet, she'll try on my shoes and they will picture that. I don't try to shelter her from the media.
Peter: Is it difficult keeping up with your performances while taking care of her?
Desire: I totally don't look at it that way. I look at it as a job. And when you have a job and family you have to balance the two. When I'm not so busy... mostly during the week... I'm with her. And during the weekend I go to work!
Peter: How is YOUR family taking your success?
Desire: They are thrilled for me... Of course at first it was not that easy. They thought I was going astray. But my mom still gives me a call to check up on my studies. (She laughs) But she's happy.
Peter: How about your relationship with the celebrities in Kampala? We are constantly hearing of "beef"...
Desire: You know with ladies... its kind of hidden. Even when there are those small fights you wouldn't know. So far I've not had any fights with any one. So if they hate me, its up to them.
Peter: So I guess the media has been good to you then... Or is there anything in the media that you would like to correct?
Desire: (She laughs) If I started talking about Red Pepper I would go all day. Its quite a lot. (She sighs)
Peter: We are here all day... (I know... I'm digging for dirt... forgive me.)
Desire: Yah... (She thinks for a minute) The people should just know that the mayor is just my friend. And they shouldn't make a big deal out of it.
You would think that with all the potholes, garbage and sewerage flowing in Kampala City, the Mayor, Nasser Ntege Sebaggala, would be a very busy man. He might be, but he is also a big fan of singer Desire Luzinda. He is not one to miss an up market event where the singer is performing.
A month ago, the mayor was one of the chief guests at Luzinda's Unplugged show where he showered the singer with praises. He was once again in the audience when Luzinda was performing at the Silk Lounge Fashion Night and seemingly had eyes only for her. The mayor even took time after the fashion show to have a prolonged private chat with the singer. A chat that left both parties with ear-to-ear grins. Hmmm!
Desire: You know... I step on stage and people are like, "Seya!"
Peter: Oh yeah?
Desire: It got to a point where I had to stop being on the defensive. So I'm like, "Okay guys... Seya mumuleke!"
I'm not sure how long its going to go on but we're just friends. That's life.
Peter: He sounds like a big fan. Do you have any concerts on the way?
Desire: Yeah... I'm looking at a fund raising show... its like in the pipeline... I'm trying to brainstorm it. It's for a lady who has cancer.
Peter: Really... Tell us more about that.
Desire: I'm still brainstorming it to see how I bring it out best. You know... People have really abused fund-raising and charity events out here (in Uganda). I'm trying to see how I put up a great event without being looked at as looking for money... Cuz I'm not.
This is a lady I grew up with... So I wanted to do something for her. I don't have the money to give her but I'd love to use my success to help her.
Desire: Then I hope to launch... I don't know when... Just waiting for the right moment. I just don't want to put up any concert... It has to be really, really good. I'm still working on my songs, I've done lots of collabos. I've done one with Mesach... out in July... Yeah there's a lot in the pipeline.
Peter: So you will be in the US pretty soon?
Desire: Yes I will be in the Unites States in September for this year's UNAA convention.
Peter: So what should the fans at the convention expect?
Desire: They should expect Desire... (laughs) The real Desire. I'm looking to put up a powerful performance. There will be CDs and videos... and lots of things so that my fans can get to know me.
Peter: What else do you have to tell your fans as we wind up?
Desire: I just want to encourage people to pursue their dreams. Somehow if you work hard at achieving your dream... you'll get it. I want to thank my fans and they should keep listening to my music. I have lots of videos coming out soon. Actually to get more info about my performances and everything, they can get me on facebook and they can also visit my website at www.desireluzinda.com.
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First published: August 23, 2009
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