It was John Donne in 1633 who published the famous sonnet ”Death be not proud” which was a bold confrontation with the grim reaper. The metaphysical poet was fighting for his life while suffering a severe bout of sickness and as he could feel life seeping out of him, he looked death in the face and tell it:
“Death, be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadful, for thou art not so;”
What do we say of a man whose life left a mark on the lives of those whose path he crossed; so fondly remembered for always ready to lend a helping hand; respected for being an honest and upright man; and loved for finding happiness in little things.
Such a man can be said to have lived a beautiful life and when death untimely, unfairly, and unceremoniously snatches him away, this writer believes we can deploy the words of John Donne and confront death with similar indignation: “Death, be not proud.”
Steve ‘Spotlight’ Osagie left this cold world in the early hours of Friday, September 7, 2022. His death came as a shock to all who know him and it instantly threw the Nigerian entertainment industry into mourning.
This piece pays homage to the memory of Steve Osagie with some words from personalities across the Nigerian music industry.
Steve ‘Spotlight’ Osagie: Steve Osagie was born and raised in Lagos State on 28th November 1983. He had his primary and secondary in Lagos before proceeding to London Southbank University where he earned a degree in marketing. He also advanced his studies at City University London where he got a certificate in Music Business.
Steve worked as Head of Marketing & Digital Promotion at Screen Nation Award which was Established in 2003, and was tagged by The Independent newspaper as ‘the Black Bafta’s’, the Screen Nation Film & TV Awards has become the most prestigious event of the black British film and TV industry.
Steve worked as a social media manager and media strategist for African Mummy before offering his services to Shujo Aesthetics.
As an executive, Steve worked as Head Of Digital Marketing at London Bel Canto Academy. He would later join Spotlight Management and Consultancy Limited as Head of Label Services/ Digital Marketing/ A&RHead of Label Services/ Digital Marketing/ A&R. It was during this time that he would earn the nickname ‘Spotlight’ for his ingenuity and impact across the Nigerian music industry.
With Spotlight Digital Agency, Steve worked with SMEs, corporations & creatives across the world to gain more visibility, and increase engagement & digital footprint. He worked with different brands and individuals in promoting creativity and becoming a major player in music marketing in Nigeria and beyond.
After over a decade with Spotlight Digital Agency, Steve joined Queendom Company as Head of Global Marketing & Partnership. It was a job that would see him deploy his talents in marketing in the global space. And it was when the world was about to witness his greatness and feel his impact that death reared its ugly head.
Steve Osagie was happily married with kids. He led a happy and quiet life, and he was known to put smiles on the faces of friends and strangers alike. Oftentimes, Steve could be found enjoying lighthearted banters with friends.
Steve lived a life of impact and some friends and personalities in the music and media industry were kind enough to share some words about him.
His brother and bosom friend Abdul-Rasheed Bello AKA JJC Skillz, whom he managed for 20 years and with whom he achieved unprecedented success in the UK has this to say about Steve:
“Steve was more than my manager, he was my brother. We have known each other for over 20 years with no day to complain. He spent his days trying to assist and uplift his children, wife, family, and friends. A true living angel was called back to heaven and he shall forever be missed.”
Excel Joab, Music and Brand Executive says:
“I got to know Steve during my Boomplay days. One thing that made him really stand out was his passion for the growth of the Nigerian music industry. He wanted to see artists do better and he wanted to see music business professionals flourish. His death is such an unfair blow to our industry because he had a lot more things in store for this industry.”
Nigerian R&B sensation Capital F.E.M.I says:
“Steve Osagie aka Steve-spotlight was all about putting the spotlight on others. He was brilliant and knew his work and his worth. Steve didn’t believe in excuses, he once told me it’s all about putting in the work and having clear directions, and executions, mixed with your natural talent you will get results. He’ll be forever missed.”
Entertainment Lawyer Akinyemi Ayinoluwa says:
“He was the most supportive and loving music executive I ever met. Always shared his resources with his friends and colleagues. He was also passionate about educating professionals in the music industry, especially the emerging talents.”
Nigerian Media Executive Osagie Alonge has this to say about Steve:
“Steve was an all-around great person. He was always passionate about helping and growing the entertainment space. He was involved with many artists’ careers – established and emerging. He always wanted the best for everyone around him. I’ll miss him.”
Music Entrepreneur and Creative Laura ‘L’ Erinle has some fond memories of Steve.
“Steve Spotlight! Our social media guru and my dearest ally and friend. He was always pushing me with any ideas I had and shifting any and all doubts from the table. Steve championed many of the women around him, and I am honored to have been one of the many execs and musicians he mentored. Steve shared his many thriving platforms with us all; with him the mantra was:
‘do and do again; make it perfect later! There’s no time
Steve had so many plans for the Music and Entertainment industry, together; and ultimately for his young family. I am deeply saddened by his passing, and I share my complete sympathy with his family and long-time friends. I knew Steve for a short time span, but it felt like a lifetime. Today it seems a lifetime is not enough! Till we meet again my brother, Good night Steve ‘Spotlight’ Osagie.”
Onyema Courage, Music Media Personality remember Steve for always being willing to lend a helping hand.
“Mr. Steve is one of the most wonderful people I’ve met in my career in the music industry. He is a human being with a genuine desire to make a difference in people’s lives. Our paths crossed in 2021 when I approached him to be his mentee. He welcomed me with open arms and taught me a lot of what I know today about marketing. His death still stings. I will never forget his contribution to my journey.”
Steve Osagie lived for 37 years and in that time, he left an indelible mark in the lives of those fortunate to interact with him. As the Nigerian Entertainment and Media industry fondly remembers Steve, I think we can all find solace in the timeless words of Ralph Waldo Emerson.
“To laugh often and much; To win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; To earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; To appreciate beauty, to find the best in others; To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.”
Rest in peace and glory, Steve.