“The importance of a music video is like your words just got painted but its moving."
- A P4M Project
What if you could interview or have a conversation with a legend before they became legendary. I wonder if the News station that fired Oprah Winfrey would have considered more of her ideas if they knew she would become "Oprah!" And with the same curiosity, I wondered if they valued her time more would that have kept her from growing. That question crossed my mind I'm Adaeze, and I had the pleasure of interviewing what some are calling a legend in the process; motion film Director & Photographer Michael "Ko-bena" Buado who entered America as a refugee with his family in 1999. During this interview, he was very open about how he began creating film and what inspired him to keep going. We started our conversation with understanding where he got his stage name. "So Where did you get the name Ko-bena?" I inquired. "That's my middle name," he answered, but you spell it different right? "Yea." So, what makes you spell it differently? He explained that there were too many Kobina’s in the world because in Ghanian tradition every male born on a Tuesday holds the name Kobina. "So, I feel like making my sh** different till I found another ni**a named Kobena Mercer then I was like bruh what the f***," he expressed. Michael shoots videos as a hobby, however it’s also how he pays his bills. So, I asked, "what got you into shooting videos?" His response surprised me after seeing how well he creates visuals. "Cause some ni**a shot a video for me, and that sh** was whack as f***and I was like I can do way better than this." he knew this as fact without actually physically shooting his video before. At that point he started using other people's camera until they began to give him the run around leading him to purchase his first camera. The local rapper's in Stone Mountain Ga. caught on to how well an advanced his videos were for a neighborhood kid, so they hired him. Enjoyable enough I asked Michael what the importance of having a music video was? He explained, "It puts pictures to your words, people get to see what you imagined." Going even further, he said, "that the importance of a music video is like your words just got painted but its moving." We also got into what makes a good Director and from Michaels experiences, a "Good Director" is going to put out what an artist or client thinks. He began saying, "you can tell a director I want a video in the trap, but then if you tell them about the trap, a Good Director will tell you Nah bro that sh** don’t need no trap sh**. Cause you don’t want to label yourself as no trap sh**, even if the music is talking about drugs it doesn’t always have to be in the trap it can be elsewhere." What I understood from that is an Artist needs a good director that even though they might feel they want their video to go a certain way a good director tells them that's not what they need an provides better and more creative options.
Knowing that clients and Artist won't always be as receptive to what the director visualizes led me to my final question. "What is that conversation like when you do what they want?" After letting that question digest, he stated. "It's like taking a color pencil, and a piece of white paper from an Artist an giving him a coloring book with just two colors and telling him just go-ahead color. But his color got to be this, and this color got to be that, this picture got to be its own color so he can't do anything but," he stopped halfway exhibiting emotions of disappointment and passion, then he finished. "So, he's not creating nothing but just making the best out of what he's got." Michael Ko-bena Buado is a household name across the world, a "legend in process" which is gradually taking the social media world to another atmosphere watching his visuals. With so many big things in store for the Ghanian / Liberian creative let's see where the journey leads him to. You can find him on instagram as @p4mkobena the Director.