Your browser is no longer supported. Use an up-to-date browser to make full use of all content.
Back to start page
"Keine Liebe": Chima talks about his new song in the NEW YORKER News interview
With his hit "Morgen" and the debut album "Stille", Chima already entered the charts in 2012. "Morgen" was clicked on YouTube more than 5 million times. The Frankfurt singer and songwriter grew up in Frankfurt in the 70s as a child of Nigerian parents. He met Moses Pelham, through whom he found his way to the local rap scene, and was also part of the legendary group Brothers Keepers. But soul and pop are more to his taste. At the same time, he began to study sociology after graduating from high school, which he broke off in favor of music. Chima's new single "Keine Liebe" (no love) is about the desire for freedom, courage, loss of control and trust in one's own strength - and is the starting signal for a new personal and musical era.
in your current song "Keine Liebe" it says: "Daddy, said: 'Boy, don't stand out and be good'."  How much of your own story is in it?
The song is clearly autobiographically motivated. I tell my reality. The quotation reflects things that my father gave me on my way in my childhood. These are probably instructions that many immigrant children had to listen to from their ambitious parents who were misunderstood by German culture. I am influenced by such thoughts and therefore I found it important to let them flow into my music. 

How did you find your way to music and which music did you listen to when you were younger?
I found my own musical career through rap music from the USA. This music genre was a revolution for youth culture in the 80's and also fascinated me. As a young adolescent, I found the possibility of making my perspective on the world audible with just a microphone and a record player irresistible. Before rap I was a big fan of Michael Jackson, Frankie goes to Hollywood, Depeche Mode and Tears for Fears 

When did you realize that music means more to you than a classical career with school, studies and job?
I think I like both academics and music. At university, however, I realized that both require a competence in self-organization. I would have liked to do both at the same time, but I always tended to be very absent-minded - and at a certain point I only wanted to bundle my strengths in music. Today I regret that.
Live performances were not possible for a long time because of the Corona pandemic and will probably be uncertain for a while. Do you have a plan B besides music?
No. I will continue to make music. I think I have something that Germany needs and I don't have to worry about my business being shut down. 
Photo: Viktor Schanz
In a recent Instagram post you wrote: "I have a tendency to think too much anyway. But how can I, with everything that is going on in the world right now? What do your current thoughts look like?
I'm thinking about how people deal with the world, with their fellow human beings and about the meaning of life in general. Right now I'm mainly concerned with the situation of black people in the USA, Europe and Africa and how to improve it sustainably.

Do you have a favorite place where the lyrics and melodies come to your mind?
When I take a shower I always get some good ideas. I imagine a connection between the pleasant splashing of water on my body, the distraction that comes with it, and the resulting heightened top view when singing and lyrics.

What has impressed you lately?
How a demented family member could remember the melody of my current single "Keine Liebe" after weeks.

What topic would you like to do a song about?
Maybe about the energetic processes during sex with a person for whom you feel love. I would not know what I have not already described.

(Photo: Viktor Schanz)

More info:

Watch the video for "Keine Liebe" here: