Get To Know Osi Umenyiora and Leila Lopes

New Record Label The Uprise

Former New York Giant, Osi Umenyiora has swapped the football pitch for a music office as he, and his wife, Leila Lopes, Miss Universe 2011, launch a one-of-a-kind record label, The Uprise.

We got to know the couple and found out how they are using their love for music to connect people all around the globe and are aiming for the stars, uniting the world through the universal language, that is music.

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This is a big change in both of your careers. How did you come up with this idea?

We came up with the idea based on a love of Baile Funk music from Brazil. We realized that although the music was massive there, and is so catchy and cool, people on this side of the world didn’t know about it. So, we set out to make our own version of it, which mixes that sound with other sounds that people are more familiar with.

What has the journey, to the launch of the label, been like for you?

It’s been exciting, but also difficult. There are quite a few challenges especially as it’s brand new to us. It’s been so much fun bringing people together.

Are there any other record labels that are inspiring you to follow in their footsteps?

We are literally the only label doing what we are doing. Based on the concept of uniting cultures and bringing the world together.

What sort of things do you look for in an artist?

We look for versatility first, because our sound is so unique and they have to be able to fit on it. We also look for artists with the same mindset as us, and not just looking for the fame.

Can you tell us a bit about the artists you have on board?

We have Andi Mcernest, Grace Rhodes, and Zeeko and Mikespro are the producers. Andi is Nigerian and is extremely talented and versatile. Grace is from England, can sing really well and dances very well also. The producers Zeeko and Mikes really pull it all together as they are responsible for creating The Uprise sound which is a mix of funk, hip-hop, pop and grime.

Do you have a favorite music genre?

We don’t really have a favorite genre. We listen to pretty much everything from hip-hop to funk to pop and R&B. They are all good in their own unique way. 

You have lived all over the world. Do you both have a favorite place so far?

That’s tough. Everywhere we have lived has so many great qualities. Overall, probably London.

What can we expect to see from The Uprise over the next few years?

You can expect to see an independent label defying all of the odds, and making meaningful music that brings the world closer together. Literally every track is a combination of three or four cultures. When people fully understand what we are doing, it will be incredible.

We love the idea of connecting people through music and we are so excited to see how the artists signed to this London-based record label get on!

Photo Credits: Simon Harris and Cassiano Grandi

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