According to Baroness, her first concert was a risk. We agree. Her day job is banking and she felt like she would not have enough time left to pull off a concert. We asked ourselves how an artiste who was unknown at the time and singing music in an unconventional genre attracted such a crowd. Our answer to this question came recently when we sat with this Watoto Church-based vocalist, singer and songwriter. What we discovered is that on top of planning an event that is to happen this April the 24th, she leads worship at her home church and is working on new music. Meanwhile, when we asked her how she managed to do it in 2014, with a smile, she said, “God did it.”
Baroness Prudence Ahurire (@BaronessPA on Twitter), started writing songs as early as Form 3, was involved in songwriting for a choir in her senior six vacation, and was involved with St Francis Charpel during her days at Makerere University. In 2014, she says, “I decided to start with one step at a time. In 2012, I recorded the popular One By One song.” She also added that even Muslims came for her concert and those that attended said it was nice. Since it was her first concert, it was, according to her, an interesting experience that was slightly different from when one is leading worship. All eyes were on her.
When she tok to the stage, people were screaming with expectation after all the other opening acts were done performing. Following this reception she says, “I realized I had launched out. I have released myself into this realm.” That’s the feeling she had. “Here we are. We have to keep this going.” At the end of the night she was tired but fulfilled.
During our interaction with her, she told us that, you cannot pretend to be who you are not. This is the reason why she did not feel compelled to conform to what some consider popular genres. “I’ve heard people say, I should write you songs in Luganda (one of the predominantly spoken languages in the Uganda, Kampala).” To this she says, that’s not the direction that God is leading her. “That’s not me. I cannot write that kind of music even if I tried. Even if I went to the prayer mountain for 40 days, I cannot write one like Judith Babirye or Wilson Bugembe.” Her songs come with ease. Without much stressful thinking. “This is the direction God is taking me. I know it is against my traditional African type of music but I know that’s the direction for me.”
Baroness says she did not even know her kind of genre until she went to studio and was asked to sing. “When you are moving in the right direction, God connects you with the right people.” God connected her to C19 Studios which recorded, mixed and mastered all of her music. When the single – One By One, became a big song, she says she was excited. She had backed up a few artistes before but this was new to her.
We wondered why she had no collaborations yet. To this she responded that, “Collaborations should not be forced. I believe they should happen naturally.” She says, “It is more than a song. You are communicating.” Three artistes have had a chat with her about a collaboration and if there is a collaboration to expect, it is one with Ruyonga who is her friend. Whenever they meet, they are reminded of the song they are supposed to work on. She’s looking forward to any collaborations and she says it stretches one’s creativity. In fact, she says her music may have been well received because of its simplicity.
Responding to how she manages to balance her day-job and her music career, she believes time is a gift and when she is at work, she is fully engrossed in banking. When she steps out and is in studio, on stage at events or at church, she is fully a musician too. “My day-job inspires me to do my music even more. It is like a continuation of work. Of course sometimes I feel that it is limiting.” She would have had more time to grow her worship career if she had a less hectic work but she says, she prayed to God that she could have more time for her music and worship career. This is the next level she wants for 2016 and the years to come. Surely, Baroness is here with us for a long time.
Baroness believes that many times, people merely need to study our lives, see what we do and this may encourage them to change without a sermon. Her writing has grown through the years and her songs come when she is praying, reading the Bible and occasionally when she is taking a walk or is in a Matatu. She recalls listening to someone who encouraged her to record the tunes that God brings to her mind because, one can never know what God intends with such. “I don’t know how I can explain it, but I can feel it in my mind and heart that this is a tune or song to write.” Sometimes she writes a chorus and then the verses come weeks later. On other occasions, when the song concept is conceived, she cannot settle until it is written in its entirety.
From Senior one, Baroness was raised up by a single parent in an extended family because her mother took care of some of her cousins. “God has been faithful. Most of us have finished school.” She says that her mom did not segregate against anyone and she learned a lot from her especially to love and always work hard. She studied Music in her Advanced Level at Secondary because she felt that at a certain point in her life she would work with musicians from allover the world and hence needed to know how to read music. Owing to her success in the examinations, she was called back by her music teacher to inspire other students to follow her footsteps.
Even though she studied Development Economics at Makerere
University, she was always involved in music. She moved to Watoto Church after school to be able to serve at a community Church. She was staying near the Watoto Church, Ntinda campus.
We could go on and on telling you about the great time we had chatting with Baroness but we believe you can come share in her life experiences with God at Live Again Concert. We will be there.
All your updates will be in one place at @UgGospelLife Twitter and Ugandan Gospel Life o