Social media influencer and entertainer, Chinyere Amadi, aka Calabar Slayqueen/Chilly B, spoke with DAVID OLADUNJOYE about her career in a recent interview.
How would you describe your journey into social media space?
I feel that social media is like a children’s workbook. You either sketch on it, colour on it or write clearly what your school teacher can see, either right or wrong. The road has not been too smooth but by His grace, we are still moving on and hopefully, we would get to the peak soon.
How were you able to get so many followers?
I was able to build my follower base through consistency and devotion.
Are you satisfied with the number of followers you currently have?
Not really. I was off social media for about 10 months and when I got back, things weren’t the same again. But as we speak, I’m doing all I can to regain my balance.
Why were you off social media for that long?
It was majorly for personal reasons.
You have lots of fans online. Have you met any of them one-on-one?
I met one in the market once and she screamed my name. I even got scared because I didn’t know where the noise was coming from. She then said she was surprised my butt was real because she thought I usually edited the pictures I posted online.
I told her I had friends with even bigger butts and we both laughed over it and hugged ourselves. She requested for a picture but I refused because I wasn’t properly dressed but her response got me teary eyed. She said, ‘I am in love with Chilly B, not the dressing, and it’s Chilly B I want in the picture, not the dressing’
Since that day, I told myself to work really hard because even people unknown to me have so much love for me, and I don’t want to let them down.
Have you ever thought of leaving social media because of cyber bullying?
I have harboured such thoughts several times. However, I always remember that I have lots of bills to pay, so I concentrate on the gains, and shun the hateful comments.
When you joined social media, did you know it was going to be this profitable?
Honestly, all I wanted was to upload nice pictures, get likes and make new friends. Little did I know that fate had better plans for me. Every day, I wake up and thank God for all I am.
Do you have lots of celebrity followers?
Yes. Quite a number of celebrities follow me. But with the way the industry is, if you’re not in their caucus, no matter how good you are, you still wouldn’t be good enough for some celebrities.
Have you ever been involved in any violent encounter in your line of work?
I have not really had any physical encounter, except the little accident I had when I had to leave my car and jump on a bike because I was late for an appointment two years ago. However, online trolls perpetrate a lot of emotional violence.
What is the weirdest message you have ever got from a follower?
A male follower once wrote a message to me in pidgin English, stating that as big as my butt is, it is still a man like him that has sex with me. I was so mad and wanted to reply him, but on second thought, I decided to let it go.
How lucrative is it being a social media influencer?
It has been extremely lucrative, although I’m still waiting on fate to finally bake my full bread.
What influences the jobs you take?
It has to be a brand associated with entertainment. It should also be educational, and fit in with my brand.
Have you ever turned down any job?
A lot of sexual enhancement sellers offer me good money just to help push their products, but I always turn them down because I believe their products promote lies.
Also, I think their products are quite diabolical because they promise to help women get money from men. Meanwhile, one of such men may be my future husband. There’s no way I would be involved in promoting such.
When you first joined social media, did you know you were going to be an influencer?
Even if a pastor had told me, I wouldn’t have believed. It all started like a joke but here we are now.
On the other hand, even before the advent of social media, I was already influencing young people around me with my craft and the other things I did.
A lot of people already looked up to me, so I identified with that part of me that wanted to influence young minds and bring out the best in them. Social media only provided a bigger platform for me to expand my reach.
What are your other interests?
My main calling is to be a rap artiste and I also act. Social media influencing is my ‘side chick’, while music is my first love.
What are the highlights of your music career?
I grew up around musicians. My late mum was a singer. She was also a dancer, so, in a way, she helped discovered my talent at the age of three. I started doing music in church and school.
Initially, I went by the name ‘Chichi’ but I changed it to Chilly B in 2012. That was when I released my first official single, ‘Wyne am Go Down’, which did well on many music charts in the South-South part of the country.
At that time, I was rounding off my studies at the University of Calabar.
What stands you out as an artiste?
My stage craft commands a lot of attention as I was once a professional dancer. I have headlined many shows in the South-South region, and I have won some awards too. I am currently working on the visuals for my new single on which I will be featuring MC Galaxy. I believe it will be a hit.
How many movies have you featured in?
I have featured in quite a number of films, including ‘Itoro the House Girl’, ‘Itoro the Wise Girl’, ‘Estate Runs’, ‘Cross Instincts’, ‘Evil Step Sister’, and ‘Forest of the Unclean’, among others.
I have acted alongside people like Annie Idibia, Halima Abubakar, Moyo Lawal, Amanda Ebeye, and many others.
Have you ever felt that people look down on you because of what you do?
I don’t really bother myself about such things. Some people say that I do nothing but shake my bum.
Would you consider leaving social media if you get a good job offer?
I will definitely leave soon to focus on my music career. It’s not pride but I can never work for anyone, even if they offer me N10m per month. I have a degree, so I could have chosen to seek a corporate job if I wanted to.