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Eldee Shares His Personal Growth Story, ‘The Last Few Years of My Life Have Been Very Interesting; a Lot Has Changed’



Eldee Lanre DabiriMusic star Eldee is one artist whose music is always a welcomed change from the generic sound in the entertainment industry but he has kept off the radar for a while.

He is however active on social media as he shares his views and thoughts on several issues in Nigeria. His voice is always heard and in a new article on his personal blog, he talks about his personal growth over the years.

The article titled ‘My name is Dabiri, Lanre Dabiri’ is quite an interesting read.

Read up his post below:

The last few years of my life have been very interesting, a lot has changed. I don’t have an album coming out, I’m not touring, I haven’t even been in a recording studio in months. I have two houses full of pro audio recording equipment that are probably going to be listed on eBay soon, hard drives of music I like to consider ‘dated’, and fewer and fewer music business related phone calls with each passing month. The only thing that has remained constant and may actually be growing in number is the barrage of emails from up and coming talent. They’re either looking to get signed, get connected to a colleague, or just seeking advice. I have had the privilege of meeting some amazing young professionals, and I enjoy engaging younger artists. I am eager to share my experience, teach a trick or two or just give guidance in any way I can. I don’t think we do enough of that as a society. A lot of people go to the grave with information that can add value, give perspective or even change lives. That’s a topic for another post. If you’re reading this and you have ever sent me an email that I didn’t respond to, please forgive me, I get hundreds of emails weekly. I have resisted hiring someone to sort out my inbox because I don’t want to lose the personal touch, sadly I may have to do so soon, if I’m going to be able to keep up.

Like I said earlier, It is really interesting how different my life is now. I used to live in a house with at least four or five other adults and now it’s just me and my girls. I used to get out of bed when I felt like it, now if I don’t get up at 8am, my kids will be late for school. I used to be out club hopping all night, every weekend, and now I can’t stand loud music for more than an hour or two. Since I started having kids, my routine has adjusted to accommodate a lot more family time. I’m much more domesticated now and I’m loving every minute of it. When I had my first daughter in 2009 I was still very active as a musician and record label exec. I remember being in and out of studio while my wife was pregnant. I also remember constantly being on the road touring, from nationwide radio and club tours, to the US, and the UK tour of late 2010.  Touring took me away from home for extended periods. I remember being home with my family for no more than two weeks at a time for almost the entire year. While I enjoyed meeting fans, performing and collaborating with artists from all over the world, I missed spending quality time with my girls. I’m blessed to have the most amazing wife anyone could ask for. She was there from the very beginning of my professional journey as a musician in 1998, and she never complained because she believed in me, a young man living his dream and following his passion. She never once complained about the late nights, the constant trips, the ever-ringing phones, the constant dinner meetings at the house where she had to cook and host my sometimes annoying guests. Some of the people I was constantly surrounded with were creative jerks but she never once complained, I appreciate her for that.

Over time, I began to feel the need to spend more and more time with my family, so I chose to re-evaluate my commitment to my passion of being an active musician. An opportunity came in 2012 to expand the record label and sign new artists which I did, hoping to step away from active performance and spend more of my newly acquired free time developing new talent. My undeniablealbum was scheduled to be my last studio album and I figured it would be easier for me to be the label boss in order to spend more time doing the more domestic things that are now top priority. Long story short, the partnership to expand the label didn’t work out as planned because partner/investor commitments never quite came through as promised. It put a strain on me emotionally and financially, and eventually I started thinking to myself “…maybe the universe is speaking to me, could this could be a cue to step back and re-evaluate my goals? Am I doing this solely out of passion? Have I lost the plot? Does this make sense as a business? Is this what I want to spend the next ten years of my life doing? Is there maybe something else I ought to be doing right now that I’m not doing? Is there a greater purpose for me out there that I have yet to explore?”.

I decided to take a break from it all by the end of 2012. We were pregnant with the second baby and I realized how much my wife needed me, nothing was more important to me at that time than my family. I spent a lot more time with my wife and my first daughter, I gotta tell you, watching her grow is the most beautiful thing in the world. With Toke my second daughter on the way, I had to re-channel my creative energy and focus on finding a new and meaningful purpose. I couldn’t afford to be away from them, so whatever my new challenge had in store, it had to fit within my new schedule. That is when I began exploring some of my side projects and I zoomed in on a solution I had been working on for a few years on the side, Playdata.

As a musician and label exec doing business in Nigeria, I had to deal with challenges that are specific to the entertainment industry regarding the return on investment of broadcast promotion campaigns. In simple english, you spend a lot of money but you are unable to match the results with your expenses in a scientific manner. It was always a gamble with each release, and I was pretty sure I could figure out a way to minimize that risk. I have always been a technology enthusiast,  the architect in me believes that up to 80% of man’s problems today can be solved with technology, we must focus on innovation, and what better time to take a dive into providing that solution. Today I am proud to say that we have not only built an optimal solution for that problem, but we have raised necessary capital to provide it to anyone in the world who is seeking improved efficiency of their broadcast campaigns. Look up playdata when you have a moment.

Through it all, I have had more time with my family, I have grown in knowledge, wisdom, and understanding. I have learned to enjoy the serenity I once knew as a young boy growing up in Kaduna. My relationship with close and extended family has never been better. I have lost a lot of the fluff and discovered who my real friends are, but above all I have connected with my inner self and found true happiness. A lot of people believe happiness is directly related to financial independence but while I can confidently say I have never been more excited about my financial situation and it’s prospects, I understand that the happiness I’m experiencing is more as a result of my constant journey towards the discovery of my personal legend and how to inevitably fulfill it.

I enjoyed starting from scratch,…young boy from Kaduna with extraordinary passion that arguably changed the game. I enjoyed the hustle that created eLDee the don, I enjoy influencing younger creatives, I enjoy innovation and what it means to the human race and our beautiful planet. I enjoy acquiring knowledge, I enjoy sharing knowledge, and I hope to continue doing things to inspire generations to come. I may not be on your TV or radio like I used to, I may now be referred to as “that guy wey sing Bosi gbangba“. I may not receive preferential treatment at public functions, but I have taken the first step towards an enriched human experience, and a truly fulfilling life, I have found happiness.

For more from Eldee (and to read up his full post) be sure to check out his personal blog here.

Photo Credit: Instagram


  1. Adeleye Oluwatosin

    March 13, 2015 at 11:00 pm

    U couldn’t av said it more better!!! Av missed d brand “Eldee”…but thank God u had a retrospect of what ur past,ur present nd ur future..ur gals need at this crucial stage/age of dir life.very IMPORTANT. Formative years! Thumps up..May Almighty God guide u in ur decisions..AMEN

    • eLDee

      March 14, 2015 at 11:56 pm

      Thanks, may God guide and bless you too!

  2. Really Concerned

    March 13, 2015 at 11:02 pm

    I must say El-Dee is one Nigerian artiste that hasnt been given as much accolades and recognition for his ingenuity and creativity. How can I forget the smiles Eldee and his group Trybesmen brought to faces of Nigerians with their hit song “Shake Body” at a very critical period? Eldee, has given us several hit songs as a solo artiste with fusion of hip-hop and hiplife.

    I can relate to his priorities changing with raising a young family. Family should be one’s priority and sanctuary thus it is important to make one’s home as happy as you want it because nobody would do that for you. I also admire the fact that Eldee recognized the importance of passing on knowledge to the next generation. It is a virtue that most people don’t even consider as part of preserving a legacy and giving back to society. Eldee, bless your heart for this gesture. May God continue to guide you in whatever endervour you decide to pursue.

    However, Eldee. we still dey expect another hit song like “na wash”. Bruv, you cant just bow out on your fans from way back 1998 like that without one for the road.

    • eLDee

      March 14, 2015 at 11:58 pm

      Thanks for the kind words. I’ll surely find the time to make some music sometime in the near future. God bless you.

  3. Nwanne

    March 13, 2015 at 11:34 pm

    Eldee Baba, nice one and i am very happy for you and this your new found path. May you find that completeness that would dot the i-s and cross the t-s of your Hustle. One of my regret and i still painfully nurse it is that i didn’t get to meet you personally. I felt we shared a somewhat similar creative wavelength but i couldn’t seem to make any meaningful musical stride out of mine. Your music was not the gbogbo ero type, there was always a touch of sense and thoughtfulness to it. From the days of Tribesmen’s Shake Bodi with the lads and my girl Sasha P, to I Go Yarn, to Bosi Gbangba, and other lyrically brilliant songs you blessed us with, I have followed you all the way and nothing can minimize your contribution to the renaissance of the Naija Music Industry. Well done Baba.

  4. timbolo

    March 13, 2015 at 11:49 pm

    Eldee has really grown in the past few years. Yeah hmmm his club hopping and extra-curricular activities days. Some do change.

  5. @edDREAMZ

    March 14, 2015 at 12:02 am

    See text book abeg.

  6. always happy

    March 14, 2015 at 2:06 am

    This should be titled ” when a man realizes he can’t have it all, but he can re-define what “all ” means to him and still arrived at the bus-stop called content and joyful.

    Its always good for folks to be candid about their life’s journey, when its real you would know and i’m sure Eldee will attest the lessons and the memories he is creating with his family will last longer than “bosi gbangba”

  7. dubai mum

    March 14, 2015 at 2:45 am


  8. Olori Tari

    March 14, 2015 at 2:59 am

    The genuine joy.

    The joy you feel when you realise you have grown for your own damn self.

    I read this smiling – there’s nothing like finding yourself. It’s like a new you! You begin to marvel at your real self. To be quiet inside with genuine peace is a feeling I pray and hope every one gets to experience. Might take time and some people are too caught up in the world that they don’t even realise. I am still searching but I am a step further! Ending of last year did me this and for that alone, I’m thankful.

    To be in love with your serenity. To take a step back and reevaluate or retrace! To experience another type of happiness even though all your life you have been the happiest kid on the block. Ah Happiness that would take forever to get snatched! He seems to be in a very good place and I’m EXTREMELY happy for him. This is what I like to read and hear from anyone really 🙂

    Btw, I love this subtle promo. Let me check play data out!

  9. paulmirabilis

    March 14, 2015 at 3:18 am

    This guy is very smart. Good luck on Playdata. It’s a goldmine, trust me!

  10. Ifemelu

    March 14, 2015 at 3:45 am

    Eldee changed the game. Period. There was no teenager in Lagos in 1998 who did not know, “oya shake body” and he also introduced us to artists that still today owe a lot to him. One thing about Eldee is he always always lets others shine right from the start. We would listen to Timbaland, Magoo and Missy from the states but then switch to Tybesmen and Platashun Boyz in a heartbeat. I remember when he moved to ATL, released his own solo album. I bought it online and when that album came through, i listened to “chi chi chi lolo African chiquito number one” He is one artist i have seen grown, someone i will always and i mean always support and i am glad he is changing to suit his current stage in life. Eldee, i know you are reading this, i have met you before and you are a very humble and kind person. As your fan throughout your music career, we know what impact you have had in the music industry and for that, we respect you. Whatever you decide to do, we gats your back. It happens, i am sure one day you may find that “thing” again to write but if you don’t, keep being a light and not sucking up to politicians. Your ideas have always been innovative! Keep changing the game.

  11. Efee

    March 14, 2015 at 4:47 am

    Good for you Eldee!! Introspection is always a good thing. Great that you also give your wife due credit. All the best!

  12. fokasibe

    March 14, 2015 at 7:14 am

    elDee the Don has always been a voice. Mad respect for this truly creative individual. I like the fact that he is back to his centre, which is family.

    May God bless and enrich you; may His hands keep you and yours, may you never know regret, may you never want.

    I will check playdata out, wish you success as you chart this new course.

    Mad respect

  13. spoonfullofsugar

    March 14, 2015 at 8:36 am

    Didn’t know this guy was so intelligent. Niceee!

  14. Carliforniabawlar

    March 14, 2015 at 10:02 am

    Just Wednesday morning I was singing shake body in the shower! I didn’t know where it came from sef…I just started laughing at myself.
    Whay came to mind was how on the last Empire episode I saw, Luscious said something to his son about music being the truth and also how it lives forever after all is said and done. (And then homeboy decided to sing DA TRUTH about a man loving on a man…but hey! that’s another conversation on seperate post….whenever BN decides to get with the program and post about Empire 😛 )
    Them Eldee did their thing mehn….guys like this should in the least be writing music….finally listened to Wizkid’s ‘In my Bed’ last week….I’m still pondering what strain of igbo they were sharing in the studio on the fateful day he recorded the song.

    • nira

      March 14, 2015 at 2:09 pm

      Yaaayyyy, my empire personnn, lol. I am all #empire to the core…(sorry, just had to chip that in) . I love eldee so much, he is talented and one of the most underrated artists in Nigeria including SoundSultan and brymo..

  15. Nwa nna

    March 14, 2015 at 12:28 pm

    Great read! Life is all about choices & priorities and it sounds like Eldee has chosen to focus on what is the most important thing to him at this stage in life.
    It’s amazing what can happen when we do some honest introspection of our lives and what is important. Wishing him continued success in both his family and business life.

  16. tunmi

    March 14, 2015 at 12:47 pm

    I must overanalyze sha. I love the plural pronouns when he talks about his wife and daughters. I love the respect that is infused in his words. Such subtle things are difficult to fake because it’s a miror of one’s thinking. And I love this realization of growth. Well done eldee. I shall visit playdata and I wish you well.

    • jennietobbie

      March 14, 2015 at 7:14 pm

      Me too. “When we were pregnant” gave me some type of feeling 🙂 🙂 🙂 great man. Now that you know what’s important, cherish and protect it. Family first, the streets will adjust!!!!

  17. cledges

    March 14, 2015 at 2:41 pm

    This is one artist I respect, like and love so much. Nothing beats a man who finds his purpose and lives it,

    If I had the clot, I’d be making some Eldee endorsements . This man knows what it means to focus on what is true.

    Love all his music

  18. SuperC

    March 14, 2015 at 3:46 pm

    Thank U! For Everytin U did 2 d Muzik Industry… Ur Advice, Ur Song, and Ur Commitment! Blessup #TrybeMan

  19. sadiq

    October 30, 2015 at 11:03 am

    Foremost, i’d like to take this moment to commend and congratulate you immensely for your great contribution to the great music along side with your defunt group name tyribes men rercord and arguably you are one of the few group that paved way for the newly breed musicians perhaps i remember so well the likes of kaboon, african snoop known as free style and not forget blaze ,shasha , 2shotz and The Don him self. however, i can understand that there comes up a time in a mans life where he’s got to pay more focus to family and turn away from other side of attaction. i must tell you that i’m one of your fan who believe in your music struggles all through the years. i appreciate you. god bless you and your family.

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