Guttural voiced long-forgotten artiste Gerard Muwonge alias Clever J has resorted to bricklaying as life rinses him of his former celebrity status that seems to have extinct.
The singer acquired overnight fame when he released a hit dubbed Manzi Wanani in 2007. Many mistook his voice for Jose Chameleone and some even swore the two artistes were related.
However, just like his fame came, so did it disappear, within three years, Clever J was out, his songs long lost and himself not a welcome name near any stage.
The singer had life battering him that he once was spotted in South Sudan where he seemed to have found a way to rise up, but it was a little too late for his was sliding down as fast as his lyrical speed.
The singer has now resurfaced as a bricklayer in Buloba, on the outskirts of Kampala. But he rules out any foul play in his musical decline.
“People want to listen to the news that I was bewitched, not that I am better and born again now,” he said.
He blamed the evolution of the music industry for his fall from grace, claiming that artistes today are more interested in singing about fun rather than sending an educative message to listeners.
“Music of today is about fun and the likes, artistes are singing party after party, beer after beer, cupa ku cupa, how will our young people be educated. I was once in Nebi (district) and found them listening to Kadongokamu. Our music had so much value then than today.”
Clever J now claims the bricklaying business is to help him gather some resources to enhance his studio and skyrocket him back to stardom.
“My studio is done, I have been contributing to it for some time and God has enabled me. Now I will be able to start on my music again. I have all the time to make music and people will see that,” he said.
The singer now says he is born again and will not be swayed by the politics of Bobi Wine and Museveni.
“I ran to Jesus because Bobi Wine has his trouble just like Museveni. So only Jesus is where there is peace,” he said.
Once the very famous artiste who would determine his performing price, now Clever J laments that he has been booked on different shows and actually performed but not been paid on several occasions.
“I had two shows on Christmas day in Namalwa and Ntwetwe, but after spending my money to transport myself to both shows, I was never paid. Some people just do not want to pay even when they have earned,” he lamented.
He added that most promoters call him up to perform and fail to pay but he can not report them because they are close to ‘big people’.