The last time Morebranches spoke to Bad Boy Timz, he had just pulled off a feature with one of Nigeria’s biggest acts and was reeling in the success of having the song, ‘Loading’ become one of the biggest songs of 2020. Since then, he’s been putting in the work carving out a niche for himself and has been reaping the rewards, winning ‘Rookie of the Year at The Headies last year.
Despite label drama that stopped him from releasing music for a while, Bad Boy Timz has bounced back, finding his feet with the release of ‘Skellele’ which featured Olamide, ‘Iz Going’, and more recently, ‘Big Money,’ a song that’s steadily been morphing into a sleeper hit.
With his sophomore EP, ‘No Bad Boy, No Party,” set to release later this year, Bad Boy Timz talks to Morebranches about his new album, navigating life, defining what success means to him, and everything he’s been up to.
What have you been up to for the past year?
Since the beginning of this year, I’ve just been working on strengthening my sound with an infusion of what’s happening at the moment while still working on proper afrobeat songs for the project. I’ve been working on the project, ‘No Bad Boy, No Party,’ and I’m also working on my brand as more than a music brand, branching into the fashion side. Yeah, that’s all I’ve been working on.
You’re going into fashion, is it something you’ve launched already, or you plan on launching soon?
I’m still working on my merchandise, and I’ve been wearing more Nigerian streetwear brands instead of going out to buy designers. In a way, I’m appreciating the Nigerian streetwear culture and also working on my own merchandise, which is definitely going to stand out.
What Nigerian streetwear brands would you say are your favorites?
Right now, I wear a lot of High Fashion, Crowd Gear, there’s this Cult Collection, there’s EO Cartel by Jeriq, Wakadod; they have nice hats. A couple more mehn, I fuck with a lot of Nigerian brands.
When do you plan on launching yours?
It comes with the project.
You have plans to drop a new project soon. What is the project about?
The title is ‘No Bad Boy, No Party,’ it’s a statement, if I’m not here, it’s not a happening place. So from track one to the last track on the project, it’s just different sides to partying and afrobeats as well; there are messages as well. In the content of this project, there are strong messages, love messages, conscious messages, and my reality as well infused into one project, and the title is ‘No Bad Boy, No Party.’ It’s a whole load of enjoyment from the beginning to the end. The idea is ‘No Bad Boy, No Party,’ extends into being a project. It’s initially an EP, but the deluxe is an album with more songs and features that would come in on the deluxe.
Who did you work with on the project?
I worked with P. Prime, Shimzy, Beats By Timmy, Magic sticks, and Baby Bleats; he’s new, but he’s fire. Yeah, that’s all, and for collabs, just Olamide on Skellele.
The project is done, yeah? When do you plan on releasing it?
Yeah, it is. Top secret.
What was the creative process for the project like?
The songs on the project are not songs I just newly made; some of them I newly finished, But these songs are a compilation of 2020, 2021, and 2022, so there’s a whole lot of work that has been put into it. The creative process is more of my day-to-day life, what I’ve been through, other people’s stories, and my reality. That’s what inspired me to make this project.
What would you say was your biggest challenge working on the project?
Clearance of some songs. I sampled some songs, but it’s not really a project, and it’s going to get sorted, so it’s not really a problem. But clearance is becoming a big big part of the industry.
What would you say has changed for you since Timz dropped in 2019, especially with creating?
It has changed my mindset on some things, and it has helped me sharpen my songwriting skill, my beat selection skills, and just be able to do it differently. That’s what I’ve really learned in this journey.
A whole lot has changed for you since you debuted in 2019; what has it been like personally for you, the change, finishing school, and becoming a full-time artist?
It wasn’t easy, but what’s meant to happen would happen whether you’re prepared for it, so you have to match up with the energy. But it’s been an emotional roller-coaster for me because I’ve had times when I’ve had to stop making music for a year. I wanted to leave my label, and I could drop music or perform for a while, but now it’s been sorted and I’m independent. Then I returned and had to drop some songs that were not doing as well as I expected cause maybe that’s not what people expected from me. It’s just growth at the end of the day, the smoothest roads don’t make the best drivers. I appreciate the growth and feel like growth has had a major role to play in my career. Year after year, there are new things to learn, there are new things to see, and the sounds change and evolve. So the task is how do you evolve with the sound, and I’ve been able to break that yoke cause I never stop working.
How has it been being an independent artist?
Men, it’s not been easy, but I’m getting a hold of it. The financial part of it is crazy, but I’m getting a hold of it, and I’ve survived and would definitely win.
You mentioned dropping a couple of singles you feel your fans didn’t expect of you; how has it been managing yourself as an artist and who your fans expect you to be?
I feel like everyone is still growing to know who they truly are. You can never truly know yourself completely. So if I give my fans a particular type of music and they’re not feeling it as much as I expect them to feel it, I would make them at least try to listen to it and if they don’t, I move on to the next one. There’s always a new fan per release; that’s how I see it. There are some of my fans now that might not like ‘MJ’, but they like ‘Loading’. The great news is one of the songs I said my fans didn’t really accept, right now, in East Africa, that’s the song they’re enjoying. So you see the way it works, it’s not even about what happened immediately after you dropped the song because music is just evergreen. You can never tell what would happen to a song in one year. Look at what happened to Ckay. So yeah, that’s just basically how I go about it. I felt bad, obviously but I was just like bro, do you want to continue to feel bad or you move on? And I moved on, and look where we are at right now, Big Money is doing amazing everywhere.
Sure the inspiration for ‘Big Money’ is obvious, but in your own words, what inspired it?
I made ‘Big Money’ in 2020, and it was just me wanting to have a lot of money for myself, to just be comfortable, just be independent, nobody wants to depend on anybody. I’m still praying that God, Naira is not expensive anymore; I want more dollars and pounds, international shows, endorsements, you know. It’s just me wanting greener pastures. I’m praying for way more than I already have. Like I said, “as you can see, you can see, my pocket never full I dey go Yankee, Branch London greet Iya Charlie, for you I fit to crash their economy.” That part even wasn’t on the original one I recorded in 2020; I added it in 2022. I just felt like this song is a very nice song but it needs extra, and I did that and it was madness. That’s where we are at right now, people love it.
What would you say success would be like for you? Big Money already gives an insight into what success means to you, but for you as an artist, for you to say I’m successful, how would you define that for yourself?
First off, the reception you get and secondly, I have an opinion that you’re never too successful, the moment you hit a mark, you want more, the moment you hit another mark, you want more. So success to me is like a reward that you continually want to do. It’s more of a need than something you just get. There’s always a need to be more successful than you are. That’s how I see it.
How about right now, what’s the need for you?
Right now, what I’d categorise as success is a global smash hit right now. A song that’s disturbing the globe. I’m so happy for Oxlade; see what he’s doing for himself. That kind of pull, a song that can go that far. I know I have these songs; it’s just for me to drop them.
What song on your project do you think is that song?
I have a song titled ‘Maradona’ and a song titled ‘Igboro’, those two songs. Then there’s ‘Fire on the Dance Floor,’ those three songs are fire as fuck.
Are these other songs you’ve released going to appear on the project?
No, it’s just ‘Move,’ ‘Big Money,’ and ‘Skellele’. The project should be dropping later this year.
What are your expectations concerning the project?
Big wins, man. I personally do not like to rush success, I feel like my songs grow on people, so I want the project to grow on people. I don’t want a situation where people listen to it for one week, and then no longer pay attention. I’d push it in a way that it’ll grow on people. My expectations are high, but I keep them minimal, put in the work, and expect the best. This project has just Afrobeats, but on my next album, bro trust me, this album is fire, but the next album… The next album is “Young and Incharge,” and it’s almost ready for submission.