LILIAN and Vivian of El’Vee fame are identical twins born in Nigeria. They lived in the United Kingdom for years but are now back home to take the Afrobeats sounds to the next levels.
El’Vee’s sounds come with infectious vocal harmonies that reflect not just the culture and heritage but also their artistic individuality.
In November 2022, El’vee released a new EP titled U.A.R (Unapologetic African Rhythms) which simply means the duo embodying and loving who they are; unapologetic Africans, unafraid of the sound, culture and power of the black nation.
Known for their ability to empower through their music, Lilian and Vivian who are inspired by authenticity and feminine drive, in this interview with Naija Times, shares their musical journey, reasons for relocating back to Nigeria, love life and lots more.
Can you tell us more about yourself?
We are an independent Afropop duo, which consists of twin sisters called Lilian and Vivian, aka El’Vee.
How did music start for you?
We started singing in church at a young age. However, professionally, we started our music career in 2012.
How has the journey been so far, doing music as an identical twins?
It’s been an amazing experience doing what we love, with whom we love. So we’re grateful to God.
Are there times you don’t agree to a sound or lyrics? How do you deal with that?
Loool, of course. We’re humans. Most times, we hear each other out and agree on what’s best. Other times, we just bring in a 3rd party.
You are in Nigeria to focus more on your music. Why that risky step, despite the economic situation of the country?
It is always a risky step, when you make a life altering decision like pursuing a music career in Nigeria, but we’re grateful that we work by faith and not by sight, so we believe that we will succeed, despite the economic situation.
What’s life in the UK like as an Afrobeats singer before you relocated?
Prior to doing music professionally as artists, we worked as promoters of Afrobeats and Afrobeats artists. So, although there aren’t a lot of chart-topping UK Afrobeats artists, the genre is loved and listened to by a lot of people.
Can you share some of your track titles with us? And your favourite?
We recently released our debut Ep titled UAR (Unapologetic African Rhythms). On it, we have some amazing music like Jealousy, Nkwa, and Need You. Unfortunately, we don’t have a favourite, we love them all
What inspires your kind of songs, especially jealousy?
A lot of things, like past experiences, old skool music, and artists like the Lijadu Twins, inspired Jealousy.
Any personal experience?
The resilience and tenacity we continue to gain by pursuing our career is quite an experience.
Who are those you look up to in the Nigerian music industry?
We look up to quite a number of people, especially the females of the Nigerian music industry.
What of possible collaboration? Wizkid, Davido, Tiwa, Burna Boy or Asake?
We’re definitely open to it. However, Asake, Burna Boy, that’ll be awesome
Aside from music, what do you guys do to make ends meet?
We’re creative entrepreneur, and our creative expression span between music, fashion and product design etc
What are those things that make both of you different personalities?
We always say that we’re two different people, for instance Viv likes to cook, and Lil prefers cleaning.
Ever being mistaken by your boyfriends, friends, or parents? Can you share the funny experience?
Not really, our dad used to get our names wrong sometimes. He knew the difference but he would call us each others names.
Have you ever thought of getting married to twins?
No, as Viv is already taken.
What’s next for El’Vee?
World domination and spreading our gospel faith.
What’s your fashion style?
Cool, edgy, a little eccentric and fun.
Favourite Nigeria food?
We really love jollof rice and turkey.