She is one of the dancehall artistes that has taken the industry by storm with songs like ‘level’, ‘In the Mood’, ‘overdoze’ among others.
Veronica Luggya known to many as Vinka.
Red Pepper’s Marcxela Mugisha caught up with her for a one on one and here are the excerpts.
RP: Your music career is on ‘fire’ at the moment, how does that make you feel?
Vinka: I feel blessed, I am only grateful to God and to Swangs Avenue because my music career is doing great.
RP: Your latest song ‘Chips na Ketchup’, what inspired it?
Vinka: Well my I don’t do everything by myself, my team and I sit down and come up with ideas so we all related with this particular one because chips is an everyday meal and one can’t eat chips without Ketchup so that is how the whole idea came about.
RP: So who is Vinka?
Vinka: I am called Veronica Nakiyingi Luggya, signed under Swangs Avenue, I’ve been in the music industry for a year now. I went to Hormisdallen for my primary education and then went to Rubaga girls for my O’ and A’ levels. I later joined Makerere University for a degree in Tourism administration.
RP: So how did the name Vinka come about?
Vinka: My real Christian name is Veronica so I just got rid of some letters from my name and replaced the C with the K to come up with my stage name Vinka.
RP: So when did you start singing?
Vinka: Well I had always been interested in music but I loved dancing more than singing. In my Senior Six vacation, I was a backup dancer for the late Sera who was signed to Swangz Avenue. I was also a backup dancer for Jackie Chandiru and I danced at Buzz gigs since I was in a dance group called Full girls. It was from then that I was given the job of managing artistes at Swangz. I had to give up dancing to concentrate on my new job. Later on in my career as a managing artiste, I was told by Swangs Avenue that they were looking for a dancehall artiste but I turned the offer down but a year later I decided to give it a try and here we are.
RP: How easy was it for you to transfer from an artiste manager to an artiste?
Vinka: It was not so hard because, I was initially in the industry before as a dancer and then I used to do jingos, voiceovers for artistes at Swangs Avenue so it was not so difficult.
RP: Do you miss working with Irene Ntale because you guys were really close?
Vinka: I won’t lie that I don’t miss working with Ntale because she was my artiste, I was her manager but life goes on the truth is that Ntale and I are not friends anymore, we don’t talk or even text. I have been so busy, its 2018 and I have explained this enough times, we are not friends anymore!
RP: So how does it feel being signed under Swangs as an artiste?
Vinka: It really is an amazing experience that I don’t think I trade for anything, I have learnt a lot from here and grown as an artiste, Swangs has given me the opportunity to discover certain things I didn’t know about myself so it’s simply amazing.
RP: Speaking of being signed to Swangs, rumour has it that it brought issues between you and Winnie Nwagi, what’s going on?
Vinka: I have read those stories and they come as shock because it is not true at all. It still bothers me how someone wakes up in the morning and fabricates a story about me, it simply means they just don’t respect their jobs but truth is that Nwagi is under Swangs, her and I are okay.
RP: Were your parents okay with the career path you chose to take?
Vinka: Oh yes my family and especially my parents are very supportive, the good thing is that I didn’t drop out of school because of this so I didn’t give them any reason to think I was doing something wrong.
RP: When you had just joined the industry, you were known for loving purple hair, was it a stunt to introduce you to the industry.
Vinka: Well first of all purple is unique then I needed something that someone can think of me when they see it, it was more like a signature look for me. But I gave it a break because I wanted people to know me even without the purple hair and I am glad that people can recognise me with any kind of hair now but purple will be soon be back.
RP: There were allegations that your ‘Malaika’ song was stolen from another artiste?
Vinka: I listened to the other song after I received a call about copying the song but when I listened to the song, it wasn’t really the same song. You know usually when we do a song, we release the beat, lyrics and all the content so maybe he jumped on my song before it got out there so there is nothing I could do about it. As for chips na Ketchup, I think it’s only the codes that could be similar but nothing else is similar.
RP: Have you faced any challenges as a musician or is it so easy for you given that you are under a label?
Vinka: Of course it is not easy, the challenges are so many take for instance cyber bulling but I focus on the positives many because positivity is important for me and my career.
RP: And any achievements so far?
Vinka: Oh yes so many achievements I love the fact that I have a new family, my fans, Vinka is being appreciated and my music is being appreciated. The achievements are so many can’t say all of them out loud.
RP: So how expensive are you if someone wants to hire you for a function?
Vinka: Hahahahaha I think I am friendly to people’s pockets however one person’s ‘expensive’ maybe another person’s cheap. Can’t really give an exact amount but I am very affordable.
RP: You have been in the music industry for a very short time but do you think that the #saveU music campaign is going to help the Ugandan music industry?
Vinka: But of course, there is a future for Ugandan music, the campaign is really helping because when the artistes cried out the DJs listened and they are playing Ugandan music a little more. It also helps unites musicians which is a good thing for the industry.
RP: You don’t have many collaborations, should we expect your upcoming project to have any collaborations.
Vinka: Oh yes, there quite a number of them on my projects list but they will all come as a surprise so watch out.
RP: If there is one Ugandan artiste you would love to collaborate with, who would it be?
Vinka: That would be Sheebah Karungi, I think we have something in common when it comes to music but there many artistes I would love to work with. Internationally, I would want to collaborate with Yemi Alade and Wizkid.
RP: What inspires your style musically?
Vinka: Well I am inspired by Cynthia Morgan, Patra and Rihanna.
RP: Aside work, who is the lucky guy in your life?
Vinka: I am not in a relationship at the moment, I still focusing on my career for now so no lucky guy yet.
RP: Who is your ideal man when you are finally ready for a relationship?
Vinka: I am not thinking about a relationship at the moment but when the time comes, I would want to date a financially stable man, presentable, God-fearing and with a good background and up bringing he should be respectful to people.
RP: Where do you see in a few years from now?
Vinka: I want to be a global artiste in that my music speaks to not only Ugandans but the rest of the world even if it is not in English.
RP: Last word to your fans
Vinka: Thank you so much for believing me and for the support and I promise I will not disappoint you.