"I went to Coster Ojwang's show to get his approval and ended up working with him," Winnie Elsa

Many at times you listen to a new artist and ask yourself why they never got to be on your playlist earlier than the day you first listened to them and that is how I felt the first day I listened to Jahera by Winnie Elsa.

A very talented and versatile musician with an angelic voice, she reminds me of  South African songstress Nadine.

I had Winnie Elsa on my artist spotlight for this week and below is how our conversation went;

Describe yourself in 10 words.

Maybe three versatile, beautiful and God made 

As a musician, what methods do you utilize to continually improve your craft and stay up-to-date on industry trends? 

My go-to methods are continuously improving my skills including working on my writing, polishing my vocals, creating better content consistently, etc

Can you describe a specific learning experience in which you gained new knowledge or skills related to music?

Honestly, there's something about the versatility that I incorporate in my music that I learned later how it has helped me in "fitting in" with different audiences, especially on the ground. It is not easy to please everyone but I am proud of my work and I hope to touch as many lives as I can. 

How do you handle pressure and deadlines when it comes to music production or songwriting?

When I decided to do music I was all in. Honestly, it has not been easy but I'm grateful I know one of the ingredients is hard work and when I signed up for this career I knew I wasn't going to look back despite any challenges.

During a recording session, you realize that the sound quality of the recording is not up to the mark. What would you do to solve the problem, so that you can achieve the desired sound quality for the final product?

I have little knowledge of production but I have a musical ear. When I record I always make sure that my vocals are on point. 

How do you incorporate feedback and critiques from your fans and followers?

If there's one thing I love is learning every day. As long as it is constructive criticism 

Can you describe a time when you had to handle criticism or negative feedback on your music?

My recent EP has gotten a lot of feedback some critics have said that my release was during the wrong time when the "big fish" were releasing. I think we are doing music at a different time since a lot of our work is distributed online. There are no limits 

Tell us about your new EP; Letter and how it was to work with Coster Ojwang

My new EP is a blessing honestly I spoke about doing an EP since 2021, finally it is out and I'm over the moon with the experience. At this point, I believe everything you do is meant to be and at the right time. I'm not sure which song is my personal favourite but the first song speaks depth to me just how I'm so grateful to finally have an opportunity to sing like this. Coster Ojwang listened to my work and he agreed to be part of my project which I'll be forever grateful. I had to go to his show to be able to convince him I remember I didn't even have transport but I was determined to get his approval. It was worth it. Coster Ojwang is truly an amazing artist. 

Which other artists have you worked with in the past and what do you look at before you collaborate with an artist?

I have collaborated with many amazing artists and producers including Gabiro Mtu Necessary, Jroz, Oty Mulla, Brel Aganze, Vansoundz now Coster Ojwang. Honestly, a lot of artists have approached me to do a collaboration but not all of them have made it through. I have an attachment with the songs I've done and they have a story behind it. I don't have a criteria but I appreciate an artist who at least has a catalog with a good understanding of music. The song we did with Jroz was truly a masterpiece for Kisumu by Kisumu.

Listen to Winnie Elsa's new EP out now on YouTube: