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Nadia Mukami: I was famous but broke when I released Radio Love

Contrary to many people’s perceptions, singer Nadia Mukami has confessed to being broke when she released hit song Radio Love featuring her boyfriend Arrowboy.

The jam, released four years ago, was her 5th studio single and did so well that it gained high airplay rotation.

While the song only made the singer famous, Nadia says she was broke at the time.

“When I released Radio Love, I had a big name but I was very broke. I took a matatu like everyone else. Radio Love was a big banger, it was really big but I was super broke, it forced me to call myself in for some sort of a kamukunji meeting because it didn’t make sense to me that I was broke with a big song.”

Nadia admits that at the time she was still growing in her career and didn’t fully understand the music business aspect of things.

“There is something called CPM (cost per mile), you could get huge views on your song but you don’t make money because of the audience. I had to go back to the drawing board and figure that out and when I released Maombi I was able to increase my CPM and to date I am doing well. It’s important to evaluate yourself, see where you’re going wrong and fix it, that’s what I did.”

As much as Maombi was a gospel song and Nadia feels she has been criticised in some quarters for releasing the song to make money, she makes no apologies for its success.

“I released the song to thank God for seeing me through the difficult situation, but at the same time I was trying to improve my CPM. And if anything, at the end of the day, we have bills to pay.”

Sharing her experience, Nadia says she now fully understands the music business and this always influences the kind of music she releases.

“There are times when you release music because of the hype and sometimes the hype doesn’t translate into money, but then how do you use the hype to make money. That’s why we have seen artistes become hot properties in the market but at the end of the day they end up being the laughing stock. It’s because we don’t have people to share that kind of information with us.

For Nadia, Radio Love was more of a hype song, but Maombi is the record that became her financial breakthrough, opening up all opportunities for her, including landing her first endorsements.

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