After waiting for him for almost an hour, Ronald Magada, commonly known as Maro, finally shows up at his studio in Kabalagala, looking very composed.
Quick Talk is used to interviewing super-hyper artistes; so, Maro was quite the surprise. The dude hardly talks! He seemed more interested in his phone and WhatsApp…
Hi Maro! You look younger. [He has cut his dreadlocks.]
Yeah! New looks, New Year.
So, tell me; is there witchcraft in music? [Quick Talk hopes by starting at the deep end, he will jolt the Mubbi Bubbi singer into being more attentive to the interview.]
[Looking more serious:] I don’t know any, but I hear the talk.
What have you been up to? You are so quiet, musically.
I have not been quiet; releasing music is up to the fans, my music is being played online, on TV and radio. My latest song is Tundula; it talks about jiggers and sensitizing people about hygiene [Maro hails from Busoga, hence the special interest in ridding his people of the parasites.]
Talking about jiggers…
I am a victim of jiggers…Busoga is infested with jiggers. I could not be left out. I know my voice as a musician will change things. Having been a victim of jiggers…those things can itch! [laughs.]
I know! Hope your music brings the change. So, if you were not doing music…
I would have done business. [He perks up] I would be making money and charity.
You have many songs. Which is your favorite?
I love Kyokoba and Biwewo.
[I love] Dancehall. Beenie Man, Papa San…but I like good music of Bob Marley and Antony B.
In your song Genda Ewamwe, weren’t you promoting divorce?
I was talking about domestic violence. I was encouraging women not to put up with domestic violence. I also did Mubbi Bubbi [with David Lutalo] for those women who rip off men.
Who are your role models?
I had Maurice Kirya, but now I’m inspirational.
Do you do weed, Maro? Many musicians survive on it.
[Looking surprised] No! Do you want some? I know people who have.
Sorry, Quick Talk doesn’t do weed, either. So, what is your favourite drink?
I don’t drink alcohol. [strange; most musicians enjoy the bottle.]
If you were a president for a day, Maro, what would you change?
[Now more assertive and looking up from WhatsApp] I would make sure I know every Ugandan, apart from the census; knowing people makes it easy to plan for them.
Eh! That would be a tough one. By the way, which MP would you date, given a chance?
[Thinks and then smiles] I like Nabilah [Naggayi Sempala, the Kampala woman MP].
Not Hon Sylvia Rwabwogo? But Ok! Would you tap Nabilah’s butt?
God, no! But she is beautiful, naturally.
Let’s talk about love…
…I have a girlfriend [emphasis, one] I don’t want to have children in different places. I come from a polygamous family and I know what it means getting children from many women.
Do you cook for her?
Yeah! Even last night I cooked for her. I love local foods.
That is nice! If you were to change one thing about your life, what would it be?
It would be… oh no! I love my life; nothing!
Many upcoming musicians seem to be knocking you the ‘oldies’ off your pedestals.
I have no competition. The attention they have been given is good; their music is far different… they should be there. We share fans, I would do music for listening too, but they do dancehall and that’s what people want. They give people what they want. They should be praised, and awarded.
How would you describe yourself?
Born 31 years ago in Jinja district, I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Development Studies from Makerere University in 2015.
And like that, it is back to WhatsApp. Quick Talk shows himself out.