Nissie Okoth is among the few Borana gospel artistes who have made a name for themselves in the music industry. Her husband Martin Owiso Okoth tells us more about her passion to do music, their family life, career and more
Milliam Murigi @millymur1
For how long have you known Nissie and how is she as a partner?
Thirteen years in total. They range between being just friends, dating and being in marriage. She is supportive, understanding and handles most things with grace.
How old is she and what kind of a mother is she to your children?
(Laughs) She is over 18. Together we have three beautiful daughters. She is a wonderful mother. That’s all I can say.
She is among the few Borana musicians in the mainstream gospel industry, what motivated her?
She is determined to forge a way for many others to come after her and is motivated by the desire to reach the lost and, especially from her community and to fulfil God’s calling in her life.
How did the family and community react when she started doing music?
As a family, we were happy for her because she was already doing music in church and had finally decided to pursue her passion as a career.
Was it all about music for her when growing up?
She was interested in many things growing up such as arts, drama and dance, but music has been one of those things that have stood the test of time. It wasn’t easy to venture into this industry. There was also the satisfaction in finally doing what she had always dreamt of and to be able to do it as a full-time job is amazing.
She is one of the upcoming gospel musicians. Take us through her music journey?
She used to be the praise and worship leader in church since 2008. In 2011, she ventured into music professionally, but as a back-up artiste. In 2016, she recorded her first song, Nakutegemea. So far, she has done seven songs; five singles and two collaborations.
She is also a TV host?
Yes, currently, she hosts a weekly gospel TV show, Vuka360 that airs every Sunday on Ebru TV.
How does she manage music, career and family?
It’s not easy, but by God’s grace, being intentional on her priorities and striving to create a balance in all areas of her life does it.
How was Nissie before joining music industry?
She has always been the passionate and loving person she is to date.
What are some of the challenges she goes through as a musician?
Doing music demands a lot of time, and sometimes away from family because of travelling around to do gigs, perform in churches and events. There is also the challenge of money to do quality audios and videos. It takes a lot of commitment to prayer and waiting on God even to write a good song.
There is much pressure of trying to fit in or confirming to already laid down ways of the industry, while at the same time being the unique individual that will stand out and be true to self.
Who writes her songs?
She has written all her songs, all of them Bible-based and Christ-centred. I don’t think she would change the theme of her songs any time soon.
If she can dabble in another genre of music, what would it be and what music can’t she stand to listen to?
She’s a big fan of reggae music and is generally appreciative of other genres too.
In three words how can you describe Nissie?
Beautiful, outgoing and strong-willed.
What attribute do you admire the most in your spouse?
Her genuine love for God.
What is the future for her in this industry?
She is definitely a force to reckon with in the gospel music scene and even as a TV presenter.
What are her weaknesses and strengths?
As for her weaknesses, she is a sensitive person. She also tends to care too much for people and things and because of that she can get hurt too many times. She has many strengths, but the one that stands out for me is her resilience, her aggressiveness and her determination in life.
Given an opportunity to change her, what would you do?
My wife is human and not without flaws. But she is just perfect for me as she is.
What is that one possession she value above all others?
Definitely, her new car and her phone— she likes them equally.
What is it that people don’t know about her?
She is a bit of an introvert who enjoys time alone reading books, loves to travel and she is a good cook.