The images you are about to see and will see in this interview are quite graphic. However, they are a true depiction and reality of what one of our own in the music industry has had to go through, how he overcame and is now ready to get back in the game.The goal is not to curry sympathy, although it is only natural that you may feel that way after reading this interview and seeing the pictures I will share with you all.
The goal of this interview, however, is to let you know that Supo Dosunmu, the popular promoter who brought Don Jazzy and D’Banj, on their first trip ever to the USA, is now ready and open for business and serious candidates ready to do business should reach out to him.
Often, we act like we are in control of our lives. However, life reminds us that we are not. It throws one of its many curveballs and proceeds to school us on humility. We are reminded that our talents, wealth, possessions, popularity, intelligence, good looks etc. can simply not compete with supernatural forces or higher powers to will/prevent events that may or may not happen to us.
On March 18th, 2010, Supo Dosunmu was returning home, at 2:30am, from an outing when he got into a horrific life altering accident. The damage to his vehicle was severe and so was the damage to his body. Over two years later and thirteen surgeries, he grants his first and exclusive interview to AML. Supo is ready to step into the role he occupied prior to the accident i.e. as a provider for his family. Accordingly, it is my hope this interview goes a long way in helping him accomplish his goal of reconnecting with many of you and getting back to business. Industry, after you are done reading this interview, please reach out to Supo at ([email protected]) if you are ready to make things happen and need his services to execute your vision.
Ms. Uduak: Supo, what an honor to speak to you in this intimate interview, after all these years. How are you?
SUPO: It is always a pleasure to speak with you. I am fine, I thank God, it has been a rough road but God has been there for me and my family.
Ms. Uduak: He sure has Supo. I can testify to that. This is your first interview after how many years? Two years. How do you feel?
SUPO: I feel good, I am happy to be here with you for this interview.
Ms. Uduak: We thank God. How are you feeling emotionally?
SUPO: Emotionally right now I haven’t been better. It has been a long road. It is good to have a good support system, in my case it was my family.
Ms. Uduak: You have an amazing story to tell. Do you plan to write a book about your experience?
SUPO: I have thought about it and I have even started to write some things down. Insha Allah when the time is right I will have my book out.
SUPO AS PROMOTER AND FOUNDER OF UNIQUE PROMOTIONS
Ms. Uduak: Okay, let me take it to the very beginning for many who may not know you in the industry (before) you were forced to leave so you could heal from the terrible accident. Tell us what you were doing prior to the accident in 2010.
SUPO: Prior to my accident I had a contract with a distribution company which was my full-time job. I am the founder, CEO and President of Unique Promotions based in the DC/Maryland/Virginia area. I have always had a passion for promoting since college, where I was organizing house parties, fraternity parties e.t.c. On March 18th, 2010, my life changed forever. And it has taken over two years for me to get back on my feet again, but I am back.
Ms. Uduak: Yes! You are back and I am very excited for you! Let’s go back to pre-2010. You were a popular promoter with your company called Unique Promotions in the DC/Maryland Area. Tell the AML audience what kind of promotion company you managed to build?
SUPO: I started off promoting club parties, and eventually moved to bringing in artists from Nigeria.
Ms. Uduak: I know you were behind some important names that came to perform in the DC/Maryland area such as T-Pain. Tell me more about that?
SUPO: I have a brother in New York that is a Director/Producer of Movies and Music videos (Andrew Dosunmu/‘Restless City’). I was with him at a Labor Day event where he introduced me to a New York-based promoter that I became friends with. He subsequently introduced me to T-Pain’s manager and we made it happen.
Ms. Uduak: Let me go back to the African artists you have brought to the USA to perform. I met you when you first brought D’Banj and Don Jazzy to come perform, in 2007, at the NRC convention. Had you promoted African artists prior to that?
SUPO: No I hadn’t, they were my first.
Ms. Uduak: How did that come about for you to bring them here?
SUPO: I knew they were hot in Nigeria when I was home for my sister’s wedding in 2006, their song ‘Why Me’ was always on the Radio. I started talking about bringing them over to the states for a tour and fortunately, one of my sisters was good friends with Michael (Don Jazzy). She contacted him and he was interested and I was introduced to their manager at that time, Sunday Are, and then we made it happen.
Ms. Uduak: Paint the picture for us on the kind of challenges that was involved in bringing them here?
SUPO: There were a number of them, first off was getting them a visa because they hadn’t been to the states before. Coincidentally the NRC reunion was going to be held around the same time that I was planning on bringing them over. So I spoke to the NRC management and we came to a deal to use their resources, since they bring artists over every year and my connections with Don Jazzy, to get their visas and it worked out. Another was their remuneration, we made a deal before they came over here but once they were here, things changed some of it had to do with their manager and some communication issues, but in the end we were able to get through it.
Ms. Uduak: Now, everyone knows D’Banj and Don Jazzy. Back then, no one knew them in the USA. What was your experience like with them? What kind of artists where they in terms of promoting and having them perform?
SUPO: Everyone knows D’banj is a performer and he is amazing on stage. But a lot of Nigerians were not aware of his talent but when they saw him perform they were amazed. Wande Coal was with them as well and he was such a talented artist with a lot of humility. Don Jazzy was more like the person in charge of the team and he was quiet and well-behaved. I learnt from the experience and I will let my experience guide me in doing things differently the next time I bring an international artist to the states.
SUPO AND THE TERRIBLE ACCIDENT OF MARCH 18TH, 2010Ms. Uduak: Let me take you a different direction. I’d like to go to the accident that happened in 2010. Take us back. Do you remember what happened?
SUPO: On March 18th, 2010 at 2:30am I was on my way home. All I remember was saying , “Oh Shit!” There was a car coming right at me and I couldn’t do anything. Then I woke up when I was trying to get rescued and I remember saying “my hand, my legs” and a voice said “hang in there buddy, we are going to get you out,” and then I woke up in the hospital four (4) days later.
Ms. Uduak: You mentioned you were on your way home at 2:30am. Is that as a result of your work as a promoter? What kind of lives do Promoters live? Take us briefly into the lives of promoters, how crazy does it get?
SUPO: No. I was not promoting that night. Also, I can only speak for myself. I live a very simple life, trying to spend most of it with my family. (As a promoter) it can get really crazy at times. Contracts are breached (resulting in) shows being cancelled etc.
Ms. Uduak: Got it. Back to your story. Your life, in a second, changed. What was going through your mind when you finally came to in the hospital?
SUPO: A lot of anger, I was asking “why me?” I was saying to myself that I should have stayed at home that night, I should have left earlier, but mostly anger especially when I heard that the guy that hit me walked out of the hospital three (3) days later.
Ms. Uduak: Wow! Three days later? Let’s talk about the painful challenges you have endured these past two years. You have been through so many (13) surgeries, medication and a deeply intense emotional and physical demand on you as a result of the accident. Where do you find the strength to remain positive?
SUPO: I have a very good support system. Mainly my family, my mom and dad, my beautiful daughters, my ex-wife, even though we were separated at that time she was there for me 100%, my siblings and my friends.
Ms. Uduak: If I understand it correctly, the doctors told you, you could never walk again. How did that feel when you first heard that?
SUPO: They didn’t say I could never walk again, but they said that it would be a miracle if I did and they wanted to amputate my right leg; and my ex-wife asked them to save it and they did.
Ms. Uduak: Thank God. I recall when you sent me your first video of you attempting to walk some months ago, I was screaming and was so excited for you. Where did you get that mental strength to believe that the impossible was possible?
SUPO: I just believed that I would walk again. My faith in God and a lot of prayers. My two girls and actually you Ms. Uduak. We spoke in 2011 and you told me about a health challenge you had faced and how you overcame it. That inspired me.
Ms. Uduak: Thank you. I am deeply humbled to know that. I know for how many years now? You and I have been talking about you wanting to make a comeback into the industry and doing what you love to do, promote. Now you are here. Let’s talk about that.
SUPO: Like you said I have been on hiatus for two years and I had sometime to plan and I have a lot of ideas that will help the industry. [U]nique Promotions is going to make a comeback.
Ms. Uduak: I believe you Supo. I really do. Speaking of comebacks, AML readers are primarily artists, label owners and other industry professionals in executive roles. They are reading this now. How exactly can they be a part of getting you back on your feet, especially as one of our own who contributed your part before this accident happened?
SUPO: This industry is all about whom you know. I hope that I can build new relationships and rekindle old ones like work with Don Jazzy again. I would like to be given opportunities to do what I know how to do and bring talented artists to the States. I also look forward to working with you Ms. Uduak.
Ms. Uduak: For me, it is a no-brainer. Definitely, reach out when you are ready. I know you spoke at the (2012) NRC Convention. How was that?
SUPO: It was very emotional. I was presented with an image award at the NRC reunion, on ‘Thriving in Adversity,’ one of the highlights for me was when Chocolate City Group President and CEO, Audu Maikori, was also presented with an award and he dedicated his award to me.
Ms. Uduak: What an appropriate award and how very humble of Audu. Do you plan to be involved in paid speaking engagements to tell your story?
SUPO: If the opportunity presents itself.
Ms. Uduak: I hope and believe it will. How is your physical therapy coming along?
SUPO: I am actually done with therapy but I work out every morning at the gym.
Ms. Uduak: Wow! Inspiring. I have no excuse, gotta be just as consistent. Let’s get back into music business with one last question on the industry. What are your thoughts on Nigeria’s music industry and the major strides we have taken?
SUPO: I am very happy to see the African music industry doing good right now, particularly with the Nigerian artists signing with international labels like G.O.O.D music and others, this was my vision when I brought D’banj to the States in 2007.
Ms. Uduak: To all reading, if you could share the most important lesson from this tragic accident that happened, what would it be?
SUPO: Be responsible, make better decisions when you drink, in one instant you can change lives forever.
Ms. Uduak: Deep and very well said. Supo, you have been so inspiring to me. Words cannot express how extremely proud I am of you and all of the hardwork you have put to get here. I pray for continued and full recovery and God’s blessings on you and your family. I bet your family is also very proud. Thank you for the privilege of sharing your story.
SUPO: Yes my family is very proud, and I am proud too. I also thank you Uduak for being there and all that you do and I have learnt a lot from reading AML.
Ms. Uduak: Thank you. My pleasure.
First Photo: Supo Dosunmu (current look) with one of his daughters.
Fifth Photo: The doctor who performed all surgeries on Supo
Photos courtesy The Hearts Behind My Eyes Boudoir Photography