Queen of the Gambian Music Industry
The backbone of Gambian society is the women, across all sectors from home to the office to the field. Yet, somehow the men have become the “face” of strength, struggle and deserving of “wins”. Let me tell you, the true king makers are the Gambian women who push our economy and take care of the home and children, all while continuously being ignored and denied a seat at the decision-making table.
Working in a predominantly male environment and growing industry is no easy feat. From the unwelcoming looks, targeted disruptive campaigns, and outright verbal abuse; being a powerful woman makes fragile men shake in their boots. Meet Sally Njie, the “controversial lady” and musical king maker pushing boundaries and making no apologies for her brazen approach to changing the Gambian media and entertainment industry.
Tell us your story. Who is Sally Njie – Colley (Sista Njie)?
I am a media personality that is passionate about entertainment. I have dreams of making a difference, positively, in the world of media and entertainment; starting with my country’s creative industry. With over 15 years of experience, I have created many platforms over the years but none like the Wah Sa Halat Awards Gambia, my pride and joy. I created this award show to reward and motivate musicians and media personnel to work harder by celebrating their work.
My goal is for Gambia’s entertainment and media industry to stand out; with women being in the frontline, as they deserve to be.
You organize Wah-Sah-Halat Gambia’s only continuous entertainment award show, what motivates you to keep going?
The motivation comes from the quality of work being put in by the stakeholders year-after-year. Together, with the encouragement and of course, some of the criticisms LOL! I believe with a platform like this, that is growing and evolving with the times from the content to the stakeholders and the production, it continues to push our agenda to take Gambian music to levels never seen.
What is your proudest accomplishment thus far?
My proudest accomplishment will be reaching the five-year milestone with the award show with hopes of still consistently growing bigger and better. When I started, a lot of people expected us to fail after a year or two as that was the norm with previous awards but together with my team, we defied the odds and kept going.
Three Things you learned about the music/entertainment industry that no one could have prepared you for?
- In this industry, do not mix business with pleasure. It will always come back to haunt you;
- Don’t ever think people will treat you the same way you treat them, they are only your friend when you are useful to them or the situation is convenient to them; and
- Never expect anything from anyone, work hard and you won’t have to owe anyone favors.
The music industry is predominantly male with very few female rappers and singers, why do you think women have such a hard time in Gambia, and what advice would you give them?
This has been a cause for concern for many stakeholders including myself. I believe women don’t push as hard as they should, they can still make it as long as they don’t let anyone treat them as they are catching up to the men rappers and singers or inferior. Women deserve to shine as much as the men so, let them go for the price and not wait for the price to be given to them.
What is your favorite part about this line of work? Your least favorite? Why?
My favorite part is interacting with the creatives. There, is always something new to learn from them so, I do enjoy the interaction. Least Favourite, is when they act like dictators and are so entitled and blabbing about people fighting them and wanting everything easy. My Friend, GET UP AND WORK HARD! Your work will definitely speak for itself, there is no magic in this.
What advice would you have for someone wanting to follow in your footsteps?
Follow your dreams, be strong, persistent and know exactly what you want. Don’t expect anything easy, cause it’s not. The nice things will follow.
How do you want to be remembered?
I want to be remembered as the CONTROVERSIAL lady (lol) who made a difference in the media and entertainment industry by pushing creatives over their limits especially, women.
The Our Stories, Our Way Fast Three!
What’s your favorite song at the moment?
Loi Harr (Yon Wi Album) – Cess Ngom
Who’s your favorite artist outside of your husband ENC?
My favourite Gambian Artist is Manding Morry
What’s your favorite lyrical line ever?
Face to face with God on my knees i pray, Heaven is the way but Hell is tempting me, Life is too short incase i didn’t last today, on my knees i pray, Save My soul. Song Title – Save My Soul By T Smallz Suso