Back in May, Santi dropped his exceptional debut album, Mandy & The Jungle. All of our favourite producers really showed out on the project, but Higo, in particular, really blew us away, delivering two of the tape’s standout tracks, “Raining Outside” and “Raw Dinner”.
Due to his father insisting that all his children learn discipline through multiple art forms, Higo was indoctrinated into the world of music from an early age, starting piano lessons when he was just seven years old.
Taking a break from the keys as he found his footing in school, Higo’s love for making music on the piano morphed into a desire to produce tunes of his own, as he observed the skills laid down by his long-time mentor, Remy Baggins.
“That was my mentor at the time I started, I used to look up to him, and he was making beats so I was like yeah, I need to try this. That’s what made me start making beats.”
Joining the likes of Odunsi, Le Mav and Ghanaian beatsmith, Sosa, Higo would drop his freshly made beats onto his Soundcloud page, using the streaming website to build up a community of budding producers looking to make their mark.
With a shared vision of producing beats that didn’t conform to the standards of mainstream Nigerian music, Higo, Le Mav and Sosa, teamed up with Hvrry (“Fast”) DOZ (“Turn Down Mami”) and Tobay (“Kashe Ni”) to form the sound collective, 8OSounds.
Explaining how they formed their producer group, Higo describes a natural fit, saying:
“We started a group chat and just exchanging ideas, sharing our sounds. So we were basically critiquing each other’s stuff and collaborating.”
From the Yoruba and Igbo gospel songs that filled his childhood, to the drill beats he was introduced to when he moved to England for school, Higo is inspired everything he hears, making him an exceptionally flexible producer.
So, when it comes to what has influenced Higo over his long musical career, starting from when he was just seven, the dexterous beatsmith fires through a long list of names, from Mo’Hits to MoStack, but admits that Michael Jackson might just be his biggest inspiration.
When speaking about the producers he looks up to, Higo’s list isn’t any shorter:
“Jae 5, Dr Dre, Timberland, Pharell, Quincy Jones, then Sarz obviously. Quincy Jones is the level I’m trying to get to — that kind of track record and influence.
It’s not just that “oh he has a couple of hits” but the fact that he brought Michael up, he basically made all his songs“
Looking up to a legend such as Quincy Jones, Higo has a promising future ahead of him and high hopes for what he can achieve. In the future, Higo has hopes of working with international artists, such as Octavian, JHus, Ariana Grande, as well as Jae5, Calvin Harris and Metro Boomin.
And from our shores, he hopes to add Tekno and Fireboy DML to the list of Nigerian musicians for whom he already produces. In the meantime, he promises a producer’s tape, a possible joint project with Minz, as well as more beats for the usual suspects.
Although he has been using the same rugged old laptop for the seven years, Higo has consistently produced bangers, and thus encourages others to embrace where they are starting from, as opposed to being discouraged that they do not have the best.
Listen to the first track Higo ever put out, “Friday Night” below:
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