Mdundo DJ Spotlight: Being a Female DJ in Nigeria, DJ Naffy Shares Her Story

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This week on Mdundo DJ Stories, DJ Naffy lets us in on her journey so far, her aspirations and challenges on the road to becoming a big name in the Nigerian DJ scene. 

“My name is Noffisat Olatunji Titilayo. I was born and raised in Lagos Island. I studied Social work at the University of Ibadan. I currently reside in Lagos with my parents and siblings.

I feel like I have always had a deep connection with music. Musical sounds and beats have been something that really interests me even before I decided to chase being a DJ professionally.

Let me say, music is my place of solace, it is an integral part of my living. Also performing, I love the feeling and response I get by influencing the mood of people present during my performance. The dopamine I feel during such a time cannot be quantified.”

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DJ Naffy’s main challenge starting out was trying to earn money and recognition which led him to compromise and start playing free shows. In her words; “Well, I believe every day is a new challenge but then the major challenge I have experienced came during the earlier years of my career. From playing free shows in order to gain recognition and relevance in the industry to being exploited by show promoters and most importantly having the proper financing to navigate my brand to the heights envisioned. Another challenge I experience in this stage of my career is having the right tools to brand myself properly as well as create content for my little audience. I also struggle with imposter syndrome but I’m working on it.

DJ Naffy does not believe the DJ scene is a man's world. She opines that there are equal opportunities for both male and female DJs to excel and they must put in the work to excel. 

She continues by telling us how she was able to balance his career, the concerts she dreams of playing for in the future, where she prefers playing and how she stays up to date with the latest music trends. 

“I give all credit to my family for the balance I have found so far with manoeuvring my career. I also recognize the few valuable relationships I have been able to amass over time, from friends in the Djing community to the clients that continue to believe in my craft. 

I have a lot of places in mind but then I’d mention just a few. The 02 Arena, Tomorrow Land, The Block Party, Wireless Festival, The New York Fashion Week Shows. 

I’m very versatile when it comes to performing but I prefer when I’m on stage, I love showing off my stage presence with my skills because I love seeing and feeling the response from the crowd.

I keep up with music trends by utilizing various channels but the major ones are; The Internet, the DJ community, musical adverts and networks.”

DJ Consequence, Crowd Kontroller, Black Koffee and DJ Switch are the DJs who inspire him. DJ Naffy concludes the session by listing the artists she’d love to DJ for, his preference in regards to mixing Afrobeats and a piece of advice to her past self and upcoming DJs. 

“Davido, Burna Boy, and Wizkid to mention a few. These are very influential artists that take one's career to a high level simply by just working with them.

I love playing across the different genres of music based on the audience I’m engaging with. But the two major genres I love playing with are Club Hip-hop and Afrobeats. Also, based on the current trend of music globally and the widespread acceptance of the Afrobeats genre, I tend to mix afrobeats with international musical spice. I’m proud to be African because of the influence of Afrobeats on the global music scene.”

“A piece of advice to my old self and aspiring DJs; It is more important to be respected than to be liked. Take it one day at a time, every day baby steps. Network as much as possible because I believe one's network is his net worth. Also, learn competence and work hard and most importantly Improve in all spheres of life.”

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