Growing up in Nakuru, Rosebella Oruko listened to her father play music in an old cassette player, sing in the choir and strum the base guitar.
This was Rosebella’s introduction to music at a tender age.
The 29-year-old Nakuru-based banker, who goes by the stage name Bella Beila, says her love for music pushes her to compose and record songs that have made her one of the well-known female musicians in Nakuru.
“Most of the songs in my album are based on relationships and my opinions about them.
“In the society I grew up in, we were not allowed to express ourselves freely about love, sex and relationships,” she says.
She says music allows her to express herself freely.
Rosebella first ventured into music in 2009 when she and her two friends formed a group called Codelink.
“We parted ways after two years as we were still in school,” she says.
MUSIC REQUIRES WORK
In 2014, she signed up with a producer in Nakuru that she still works with.
“The first song I did was ‘I got this game’, which I wrote,” Rosebella says.
He album “HIS (How I See)” comprises 17 songs, some of which were done in collaboration with other artistes.
Her music falls under electro-R&B and Afro-pop genres.
Rosebella says her colleagues have been supportive of her music. They attend her shows, and buy and subscribe to her music.
"My bosses have also been supportive. Whenever I request for a day off to attend to my music career, they grant me permission," she adds.
When Rosebella was starting her music career, her parents asked her many questions, including how she would balance music with her banking career. But they still promised to support her and they still do.
Rosebella says the industry has many challenges and requires a lot of dedication, but she is not ready to give up on her dream and she hopes to do music full-time in the future.
“Music requires one to move around, attend events and market, and this becomes difficult if one has another occupation,” she says.
Rosebella’s music has opened doors for her and she now also earns money through events, selling products, endorsements and royalties.
To stay on top in the business, she works with a social media manager, Elvis Angira, who updates her Facebook and Instagram pages and also markets her music.
Rosebella draws her inspiration from Nigerian songbird Tiwa Savage.
“Her writing skills as well as vocals are amazing. She does not limit herself while doing music and this makes her a star,” she says about Tiwa.
Rosebella urges people interested in a music career to put their best foot forward and deal with challenges as they come.
“If one is not committed and principled, they eventually lose the enthusiasm to pursue a career in music,” she notes.
Recently, Rosebella partnered in establishing a movement called YOWEYOSE (Your Weakness is Your Strength), which advocates for self-love, self-realisation and self-acceptance.