When popular singer, Iyanya Onoyom Mbuk, announced in 2012 that he was exiting his former record label, Made Men Music Group, and moving on to Mavin Records, the news was met with mixed feelings.
Some felt that Iyanya was ‘too big’ an artiste to sign with Don Jazzy’s company. As is common in Nigeria’s music industry, this school of thought felt that the singer should have established his own company. But Iyanya seemed to know what the rest of the world didn’t know. He was confident that it was a good move and he had even said at the time, “After I released the single, Gift, last year, I left Made Men Music and I joined Temple Management. I needed to work with someone who understands the music industry and can help me fulfill the dream of getting my music right. And that’s why I went with Don Jazzy. I chose him because I realised the need to work with someone to bring out the real Iyanya, which is the singing Iyanya, and at the same time, commercialise the music. Leaving Made Men Music to start my own label means I will be in charge of my music and logistics, which is so stressful, and I don’t think I’m ready for that. That is why I went with Temple Management and Don Jazzy. Every time Jazzy and I work, it’s very smooth and productive; so, we decided to make it official. Don Jazzy is a legendary and amazing producer and having him supervise my project is a beautiful experience.”
However, it seems the cosy relationship between Iyanya and his new label has run into troubled waters, barely a year after the deal was formalised.
It was reported that Mavin Records-signees were absent at a birthday party organised for Iyanya somewhere in Victoria Island. It was also said that the label did not congratulate Iyanya on social media on his birthday. This led many to speculate that the centre can no longer hold for the duo.
As is our usual practice, Sunday Scoop got to work in a bid to find out the real gist. We put a call to Iyanya but his telephone was switched off for days while this report was being written. It was gathered that the singer was not in the country at the moment.
In a chat with one of the singer’s new handlers, who spoke on condition of anonymity, there was no truth to the rumour of a split. He said, “Everything is fine between Iyanya and Mavin Records. People are just being paranoid for no reason. The two parties are experienced in the music industry and they know how to handle their affairs. I think what caused this rumour is because Mavin Record’s name and logo wasn’t on the publicity materials for Iyanya’s latest song. Meanwhile, that’s not true. It just happened that way.”
When asked why Mavin’s name wasn’t included in the publicity materials, the source said, “I’m not in the right position to answer that question, but I can tell you categorically that there is no quarrel between them.”
However, further findings by Sunday Scoop revealed that the relationship between Iyanya and Mavin has practically crashed. Iyanya is not happy because he has not been able to achieve what he wanted with his move to Mavin.
A friend of the singer said, “To be honest with you, Iyanya is not happy with what is happening in Mavin. His reason for joining the label was to make his music more commercial, but you can see that has not happened. In fact, the label rarely has his time. They have a lot of projects that they’re involved in. Iyanya is not treated as a priority and that is hurting his career.
“Even though I don’t think there is any personal disagreement between Iyanya and Don Jazzy, Iyanya is ready to exit the label. He hasn’t really told us what his next move would be, but we will support him all the way. He is a great talent, and he has the brand; all he needs to do is to give the audience the type of music they want.”
Sunday Scoop also gathered that Mavin Records was seriously considering dropping some of its artistes as this year hasn’t been a good one for the label. Though it is not known yet those whom the hammer may fall on, it is clear that a shake-up is imminent.”