Bisade- A pursuant of boxing, singing, song writing and real estate

TR student Bisade Afolabi poses with his boxing gloves in front of the album art for his next EP. He is currently taking classes for respiratory therapy. Photo illustration by Alex Hoben/The Collegian
TR student Bisade Afolabi poses with his boxing gloves in front of the album art for his next EP. He is currently taking classes for respiratory therapy. Photo illustration by Alex Hoben/The Collegian

campus editor

From the boxing ring, to the office, to the studio and even to the classroom, TR student Bisade Afolabi is pursuing his education and his passions.

Afolabi was born in Nigeria on March 27, 2001 and came to the United States when he was just 11 years old. Afolabi got acclimated to the United States and adjusted his life to that of an American one fairly comfortably.

With new people and a new language that’s spoken by the majority of those around him, Afolabi learned to transition into an American accent. Though Afolabi made this transition, he thinks that there is still a Nigerian accent that is easy to miss.

“Now I’m speaking in a great American accent but I did have to work on it,” Afolabi said. “It took me some years, even now if you are the kind of person that pays attention, you’ll catch me slipping up.”

He developed his American dialect from  watching cartoons and practicing. He also discovered his love for boxing through watching and practicing karate with his relatives.

He recalled his first fight at the beginning of his boxing journey and the lessons he learned.

“I lost my first fight, the excuse being that I didn’t strategize and I got so lost in the thought of it being a fight that I wasn’t having fun,” he said. “I got amped up and nervous but it was a great experience at the end of the day.”

 This solidified Afolabi’s desire to do boxing further down the path in his life.

“I knew then that this was what I got to do,” he said. “I’ve always known but there’s a knowing about doing and you’re like ‘Yeah I’m supposed to be here.’”

Liking boxing and fighting has proven to be difficult as the redundancy of training is seen to Afolabi as exhaustive .

“You got to live and breathe it, you have to be obsessed,” he said. “And to be honest I haven’t been obsessed and living and breathing it.  I’m working on being more present and more obsessed. That is greatness, the people that are able to do it past their boredom.”

SE Intercultural Network’s student engagement coordinator Larry Jefferson, commented on one of Afolabi’s matches.

“He invited me to support him at the boxing event and I was proud to attend and honored by the invitation,” Jefferson said. “Bisade is a special young man.”

With boxing also came real estate, a field that Afolabi has found interesting.

“My boxing coach is actually a realtor and being me, I just wanted to do better,” he said. “I talked to him and he suggested that I go to an open house with him. I loved how he controlled the room, he was on the button and interacted with lots of  people thought to myself, I could do that and that I wanted to do that” 

With boxing and real estate, he opened his perspective to consider new possibilities. He believes opening up to different possibilities is what really determines the outcome of your affinity for it. Even though it is possible to not love it as much as other things it could still be something worth doing to pass time.

Another interest that Afolabi has pursued is music, something that he has always had an affinity for.

“I sing from time to time,” he said. “I’ve always had that and when I finish listening to the song, I would find myself continuing to rap to the beat or adding vocals to it.”

Afolabi met his friend Glen Che at the Intercultural Network working on a song and Afolabi was given the opportunity to listen to it before he released it.

“When I heard it I said ‘I could write you a chorus’ and I literally sat there and wrote a chorus and gave it to him,” he said. “Sooner or later he said ‘I have a little set up at home, we can make a song,’ this was 2019.”

Like boxing, his passion for music was warranted by action. He released an album named “CMNG2AMRCA” earlier this year on Soundcloud, Spotify and Apple Music. The album consists of five songs: “Regardless,” “Blood Is,” “Problems,” “Bisade Rock” and “Sticks and Stones.”

“‘Regardless’ is about coming to America and what was different for me and my experience in pursuit of my goals and women and the journey in general,” he said. “‘Blood Is’ is me just rapping, it’s nothing deep and ‘Problems’ is a song where I’m very vulnerable. I could walk out here today and a friend would come to me to commemorate my accolades and music but at the end of the day that is just an image of what you see me as.”

His work is still unfinished as he is planning on releasing more music in the future.

“I have a second episode or collective of songs coming out called ‘Why Not Me.” It tells you a bit more about myself, experiences, life and having a good time,” he said. “I plan on having four episodes come out with singles dropping in between.”

SE Campus student and childhood friend of Afolabi’s, Godfavour Aigbona praises Afolabi on his character as a person with many pursuits.

“Bisade is a very ambitious person who cares deeply for those around him. From the moment I got to know him, he has been telling me about the great things he wants for himself and those around him,” Aigbona said. “And true to his word he has been doing those things.”