A MAN OF MULTIPLE TALENTS: LYRICAL MYCHAELJuly 29, 2020
He’s Africa’s boyfriend, a talented artist from Uganda. He does Afro beat and Hip-hop. He’s versatile when he gets the mic. You simply can’t stop boping your head. He thrives in Luganda and English songs he’s an award winning artist, a business man and a fitness trainer. Follow up with as catch up with Lyrical Mycheal known as LM.
Who is Lyrical Mycheal?
Lyrical Mycheal is a truth telling firebrand taking African art to the world. Also known as Africa’s Boyfriend, LM, Lyonnell, Sssente, Wuluguma. A multiple award winner most recently walking away with the MTN Uganda Hip Hop Award for Inspirational Song of the year 2019. I produce and perform music. I am an actor and fitness model. I founded Wuluguma an arts and sports foundation that exists to unlock possibilities in young people using the power of music, film and football. I also do some entrepreneurship. Invested in a fitness gym called Bych Bodys and a cloth line called wear LM! I was born Mycheal Christian Jacobs Omunyokol in Kampala Uganda.
How did the name come about?
It was in high school. I was contesting for the entertainment prefect post and it required you come up with something to entertain the students. My two competitors chose to go for the break dance. I decided to throw on a beat and walked on the open air campaign platform while dropping some serious bars with two queen dancers. When I stepped off the stage all the students were shouting Mycheal the lyricist.
Take us through your musical journey
I started music at a young age in primary school leading a folk song to entertain parents and visitors on speech day. Some how I dropped the interest with a new found love for football which by the way I’m equally good at. Lots of talent show performances in high school and random karaoke nights in nigh clubs around Kampala is how I grew the music gift. After my A level I met Christ and got saved and this affected not only how I wrote and performed my music but also how I live my life. I believe a Christian who practices medicine is not called a ‘gospel doctor’ so I don’t front the title ‘gospel artist’. I am a Christian and I am an artist. My faith and my career!
Which song among your songs gave you the hardest time to write?
I don’t really have a hard time writing my music because all my songs come from a place of ‘this is what am going through and I want to share the experience’. I write what I feel and paint the picture using words and sound. What is hard to tell is if my audience can relate to my music like how I intended it to. For example in ‘Gukubila’ and ‘Niwowe Mbona’ which are love songs that were inspired by my love life and considering most of my current following is Christian of which most Christians shy away from love music and consider it world music or secular music. There are some really hard questions I had to ask myself you know.
Who do you look up to in the industry?
I look up to Lecrae and NF in so many ways. First as Christians that redefined what most people call ‘gospel music’ and also Lecrae as an independent artist who founded a record label that gave birth to successful artists.
Music industry is becoming competitive, how do you maintain your relevance in the industry?
Well that’s true but only to someone that is looking for the next hit song or next headline in the news papers. I came to a place where I write music that comes from the heart with intentions of speaking to another heart so I don’t get rushed by who is doing what. I don’t just want to make a name for myself, I labor to make a difference and this changes how I relate with the people. I am trying to not just build a fan base I am building a family of devoted followers. From feeding kids in the slums, to awareness school tours helping young people make positive choices. From hope tours in prisons to give inmates reason to change and belief in second chances to participations in community drives like advocating for the end of gender based violence etc. I try to give my audience reason to support my brand because they know when the music stops there is so much more.
Tell us about ‘Unmask’ album
Oh..about that. The pandemic has affected everything globally we were not spared. My team is still observing the situation as well as coordinating with guest artists to have their delayed verses submitted plus the mixing and mastering. When we get ready we will let you know.
Which Kenyan artist would you wish to collaborate with?
I have shared a stage with Kris Eroh at the Pamoja Festival in Bujumbura Burundi and Phat Phest in Kampala so getting him on a project would be timely. Also I’m good friends with Eko Dydda and we share creatively online we are actually working on something. The other Kenyan Artist I admire is Nyashinski. That brother has an organized brain.
Away from music, your certificates were recently verified from University of Queensland, Australia and that’s a big success, congrats. How did you use to balance academics and music?
Thank you very much. You know they say you stop growing when you stop learning. I take learning seriously and I prioritize it. What you prioritize you create time for. That’s how I juggle it. I’m actually doing another online course in Film Directing with the university of Alberta.
How has the pandemic affected your music?
The big set back has been it halted the steady production of the Unmask Album. It’s really painful you know when you make plans and get excited about your pregnancy then suddenly there is a miscarriage. Also all my bookings were cancelled. I was going to perform at the Vine Awards In Kampala and also join the East Africa Records tour in Europe for performances in France, Sweden and Northern Ireland. You don’t heal that easy from.
If you could change something about the music industry, what would it be?
Honestly, it would be how the people access music around here. Music is a ready to consume product that has production costs. Same way some one knows to use internet you must buy data, to have sugar you must pay for it at the shop, they must know to access music you must pay for it and help support the artist. If 100 people with my song each paid 1 dollar for it that’s 100 dollars for me and it would help produce another song for them. In Uganda mostly people are so lazy they don’t even want to contribute to your YouTube views or online streaming figures they will ask you to share the song on WhatsApp!
Just want to appreciate you for shining a light on me. Also big love to my well wishers for supporting the dream. May everything you do prosper and may you receive the same amount of love that you show me. You deserve it. The future belongs to only those who believe in the beauty of their dreams, keep carrying your promise, keep dreaming! Lion Love!
Link to my song
Social media handles
@lyricalmycheal FB IG Twitter