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Why I Went Shirtless On Stage – Salawa Abeni’s Son, Big Sheff (Photos)


Before the 2015 Felabration festival, Big Sheff, son of music titans, Salawa Abeni and Ayinla Kollington, was relatively unknown. However, his performance with his mother at the event is one that has been etched in the memory of many who watched him play.

Dubbed the Nigerian Rick Ross, the young man said he is used to such comments. He told Saturday Beats that being the son of two music legends is both a blessing and a curse to him.

“It goes both ways; sometimes, being the son of Salawa Abeni and Ayinla Kollington is both a blessing and a curse. There are some places I go to and if they see me, they are very warm towards me and everything goes smoothly. But there are some other places I would go to and they would be hostile towards me because of my parents. I have experienced both. Only time would tell if I can fit in my parents’ shoes. It would have been an easy thing if it was just one shoe I want to fit in but now, I have two big shoes I want to fit in. I think I am up for it anyway” he said.

The chubby musician made the crowd at Felabration to go into a frenzy state when he took off his shirt on stage revealing his chubby body. He told Saturday Beats that he is very comfortable with his stature.

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He said, “People have been calling me Nigerian Rick Ross ever since I started doing music professionally some years back and I am used to it by now. I am very comfortable in my skin and I often tell people that if you are a slim person, you should not expect to see someone with six packs when you look into the mirror. If you are a big person, don’t go to the front of the mirror expecting to see a slim person. If you see that I am a big person when I have my clothes on, then you should expect to see a big person when I take my clothes off. There is nothing to be shy and embarra$$ed about. If you are comfortable with your looks, then nobody can use it against you. But if you are not comfortable in your skin; that is when there would be an issue.”

Talking about why he removes his clothes on stage, he said, “It is not like I go on stage with plans to take off my clothes but I am moved by the crowd’s response to my music. When the crowd goes crazy, then the music takes me away.”

Big Sheff who added that he has always wanted to be a musician, said his parents’ reputation had nothing to do with his decision to become a musician.

“I actually wanted to drop out of school to do music but my mother put her foot down against my decision. She said that no school, no music. I am sure if I wanted to be a doctor or a lawyer, she would have equally supported me. There is no pressure on me to be better than my parents. I chose music on my own but my mother’s only condition was that I complete my studies. She said that I could do music after my tertiary education and that is what I did. I ventured into music after I graduated from Lead City University, Ibadan,” Big Sheff said.


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