Pat Akpabio is a US-based gospel singer, the only African inducted into the Grammy’s Record Academy as a voting member. She is a trained financial analyst, an entrepreneur and a proud mother of three. Since Pat debuted with an album titled ‘Right on Time’ in 2009, she has become the toast of many at home and abroad. She speaks to LANRE ODUKOYA about her passion, business and family
You have just released your third album. What are the issue you dealt with in the album?
The album is titled, ‘You Can.’ As the name implies, you can do anything, be anything, achieve anything you want with Christ’s help. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me, the bible says. Don’t give up on God in your life. God will do everything he has promised you. Just tell yourself that ‘You Can’ achieve your set goals and dreams through Christ, not man. It is a mix of worship and praise songs to inspire my listeners to have an intimate relationship with God.
How is it different from the two previous ones?
The love tone, the Nigeria beats, the contemporary style of worship, more inspiration yet God-based. The producers, the featured artists, the fact that most of the songs on this album were written way before I got married and in the university, my maturity level and love life, work with God through the years make this album different. Experience and growth and family support especially my husband, my three kids and my mother adds more to it.
You are frequently going to US lately, are you up to other things?
I have been performing in the USA and on live TV programmes frequently. My advertisement is going to be done by CBS and my album is going to be distributed by Tate Music Group all based in U.S.A. I’m finalizing all my advertisement plans in the USA, media and lots more in the US market. That’s why I have been frequenting the God’s Own Country recently.
What distinguishes you from other gospel acts?
First is God’s anointing upon my life. My ability to be true to myself and my maker is another thing that sets me apart from the pack. I don’t pretend to be too holy, I’m down to earth. My God given ‘swag’ is second to none.
You also run Patileon Altitude Hair line. How did that side of you evolve?
I hold a MBA in Finance with a bias in investment and corporate finance. I have a good business sense and that’s why I went into the business. My husband gave me the name. From my name Patience, he coined Patiléon. And the hair is manufactured in Beijing China
How about your mega studio in Uyo?
Yes, I’m almost done with setting up La’khush records and La’Khush towers media which is into duplicating CDs and DVDs Et al. It is different because it is a state of the art like you would see in Hollywood Los Angeles. I’m a gospel record label owner and I want to give back.
Are you also looking forward to a superlative album launch like the ones you had previously?
It will be big and better than the other two. Keep your fingers crossed.
When and how did you start singing professionally?
Music began for me as a child. My late father, Chief Christopher Bassy Akpan used to dance “Uko Akpan”, a traditional dance in Akwa Ibom State. My mother was a chorister in the Church of Christ and also ABANG dance leader. To cut long story short, I transited from secular music into Gospel in 2002. I’ve been in the music ministry for 11 years now.
As fashion savvy lady, what does fashion mean to you?
For me fashion is an expression of how one feels on the inside. Another woman’s taste in fashion is another woman’s dislike in fashion. So, basically dress to please yourself first not another man. Dress the age you want to portray and keep it tasteful, classic, sophisticated, glamorous, sexy and daring. If you are married, dress to make sure your husband keeps his mind, head, heart, spirit and soul Et al at home with you and the love you share. Bottom line, please God in all you do and be at peace with yourself when you dress.
How do you draw inspiration for your songs?
My inspiration comes from God, studying the scriptures, hurts and pains of life, laughter, a great moment in time, love, mistakes I’ve made or seen others make. My husband, my environment, trials and temptations but most especially God and my Children are my inspiration.
After three kids, you look elegant, what have you been doing to remain youthful?
I have an Aerobic instructor so I dance and exercise. I play lawn tennis, eat healthy, stay happy and focus. I love the spa and I swim.