When he was still working on his first mixtape after starting his new company, it was leaked months before it was officially released.
Now he’s ready to release his second music tape, “An Undying Ruler” since leaving Ambitiouz Entertainment a few years ago, and he’s praying that the same doesn’t happen.
His first mixtape, released in 2020 titled The Drip’s Leak, was leaked after it was hacked.
Rapper Anil Mbesha, better known by the stage name Saudi, is hoping that won’t happen for his next project.
“I pray to God that this time doesn’t happen because when it did, I was devastated,” he told Labram.
Many thought he leaked the mixtape as a publicity stunt, but he said the project wasn’t even complete when it made its way onto the Internet.
I didn’t leak songs myself. I really got a sense when I found out that they were all over the net. I figured let me put together a small project and officially launch it. I didn’t finish at all when it was leaked. I had to make a quick effort to promote it, but it was the first time I had to promote my project. It was a learning experience. Fortunately, she signed a distribution deal with The Orchard.
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The new song bar contains 12 tracks and features only Emtee.
“I have one feature. I wasn’t planning on getting any features but Emtee uyafosta, he insisted,” he jokes.
“I haven’t released music in a long time, I wanted the project to be related to me and my talent. But because I’m close to Sjava and Emtee, having them in my projects doesn’t feel like an advantage. They’re part of the process.”
The Saudis want people to choose their favorite songs in a never-ending pattern, but he’s excited about the introduction, titled Father’s Day.
“Father’s Day is notable because it speaks to what I commanded. I have never had a father and my understanding of the alpha male is someone who takes care of his family.”
“My mission was to buy a house and be the father figure I never had, for his name’s sake. That matters to Anil Mbesha, not Saudi. It’s a goal and a dream. I’m at a point in my life where I realize how important it is to have a father and have days where I wish I could.”
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At one point, he was untouchable and was part of a group of artists signed to Ambitious Entertainment.
Their music topped the charts on radio stations across the country. His music was featured in the Marvel Comics movie, Black Panther. A list of artists that included Sjava, Emtee, A Reece, Fifi Cooper, DJ Citi Lyts, and B3nchMarQ who have all since left the record label.
Saudi now runs his own record label Ovloe Monoloply and once he got stuck, the business was running smoothly.
“I’m the only artist who signed the label because I believe in myself,” he says.
Things have been easier than he could have imagined since he left the label and he is happy to be in charge of all his finances.
“Being my own boss, I put my career in my own hands,” he says.
“I am making more money now. But I have a lot more responsibilities.”
Unlike other artists who left the previous record company indignant, Al-Saudi says he did well.
“I don’t need to speak badly of people. I never want anyone to betray my trust and therefore never do the same to them. Ambitiouz was not a strange slave trade. I was well paid. I left the business in good agreement because we have a good professional relationship.”
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Being your own boss isn’t easy, and when he first left the record company, he was worried about whether he had made the right decision.
“My biggest worry and concern was whether or not I had made the right decision, whether or not this would work and what if people would close the doors there. What if bad things were said and people didn’t want to deal with me. But I found that none of that happened. It was all in my head, it wasn’t there,” he says.
“This was a huge fear, and again being young and being around people with a passion for music got me excited.”
He sometimes loses the comfort of having everything taken care of by a record company, but he has no regrets about running his own company.
“I’m not going to lie, I miss the wonderful times and the wonderful memories in the company of Tamouh,” he says.
“It was such an amazing time in my life with friends. We were doing this for the first time, and we felt so good with the friends I came with from below. It was crazy. But at this point in my life, I need more as a man, a recording artist, a business, and so much more.” than what was offered to me in the past,” he says.
“The reason I left was to be able to grow. I know I need a certain amount of information to be in the driver’s seat and I am still learning every day.”
Saudi says he learned through the process that he can’t do everything alone and needs a team.
“Dedicating time to both music and work was a big challenge at first, but I learned that I can’t do everything on my own,” he says.
“I can’t be my own boss, CEO, create music, rehearse and go to shows. I’ve learned to delegate people and give them positions and find a system that works for me and we can all make money.”
His goal is to be one of the biggest artists in Africa.
“I want to be the biggest artist on my continent. I want to do that while having my own voice and a truly South African voice as ever. I want to get to the level of Burna Boy or Black Coffee. I have all the time to do it and the possibility to do it. It’s really something that interests me.” ‘, he says.
But he knows he needs to work and also collaborate with other creators.
“I love artists who are creative and support each other. Collaboration is the secret to success in this business.”