Kingsley Etuk, “SKYE” From Homelessness To Music Stardom

Canadian musician Skye is ready to set the music world on fire

Musicians are a special group in any society. They often find inspiration from other musicians and create beautiful works of art. Some of the greatest works of art have come from homeless musicians. Many artists find it challenging to become successful while living on the streets. Fortunately, for an up-and-coming 23-year-old Canadian-based Nigerian musician Kingsley Etuk, known as Skye, a life of homelessness was only temporary as destiny awaited him.

Like many students from abroad, Skye came to Canada as a student to attend university with hopes of returning home after graduating to become a contributing member of society. Skye, the once mechanical engineer student who, over time, switched to business, came from an affluent Nigerian family that would send his monthly tuition and living allowance while attending school until one day, the payments stopped coming.

Skye’s father’s nephew, the family accountant, had drained and embezzled all the funds from their bank accounts. Doing so wiped out the family savings, causing them to declare bankruptcy. And with no more funds coming in, Skye eventually dropped out of university without having the heart to tell his parents. As far as they knew, he found a job and continued his education.

In reality, Skye was crashing at various friends’ houses until he eventually overstayed his welcome. Still too new to Canada, he did not understand how to ask for help, and without money and a place to stay, Skye would hop on any Winnipeg Transit bus and ride to the last stop, and where it ended was where he slept. Many nights were in a bus shack or sometimes under a bridge.

Skye recalls the first night sleeping outside was lonely, but his spirits were high. He knew his situation was temporary, and somehow, some way, he would get off the streets. Skye relied heavily on his faith and started to attend Church, where he met a person who worked at a local non-profit organization called 393 Studio, located in Portage Place mall. The gentlemen came up to him, asked if he was a musician because of his braids and appearance, and invited him down to their studio.

It just so happens that Skye’s girlfriend had given him money that week to get his hair done, so he calls it divine intervention. Skye had met his girlfriend in the final weeks before dropping out of school and was ashamed to tell her he was homeless. But when he finally summoned the courage to let her know, she was in tears and said, ” You always have a home with me.” Skye credits her as the solid foundation and inspiration that kept him going.

Regarding going to the studio, Skye was not interested at the time. Still, the fellow he met reconnected over a few weeks since their initial meeting and extended his invitation to Skye, which he accepted. To his surprise, the studio was a warm and inviting place that fed him and taught him everything he needed to know about music. At first, he came to have a place to stay, but the more he learned about producing, beat-making and songwriting, he knew that the studio was where he belonged.

After several months on and off at the studio, working multiple jobs, and having a roof over his head as he moved in with his girlfriend, he built up enough courage to call his estranged brother to let him know he’s been living on the streets. His brother, who was a successful businessperson and had many successful exits from developing mobile Apps, immediately sent him several thousand dollars and let him know this was not a journey he needed to take on his own.

Having worked long days and nights, Skye had now saved enough money to travel to Toronto with his girlfriend to learn everything he could about writing music and producing from the top engineers. Despite being homeless seven months ago, he had saved enough to invest in his future.

That investment paid off with the release of Skye’s debut single, which garnered over 100,000 streams in his first month. Skye has released many more tracks, which accumulated over 1 million streams and video views, which is extremely impressive for an independent artist.

Skye has gone from a life of privilege to homelessness to becoming a full-time musician on the cusp of stardom. He remains humble and devoted to his beautiful girlfriend and appreciates her unconditional support and love. He acknowledges family and friends for always being there for him when he calls on them. Skye says he would not be where he is today without the help and support of all the highly talented musicians and performers he has had the privilege to work with daily. He credits 393 Studios for allowing him to learn something and be a safe place to come, have a bite, and sometimes sit back and relax.

Skye will undoubtedly be one of the biggest names in music in the years to come as he builds toward his debut solo concert in 2023. His music sounds excellent, his lyrics are positive, and his on-stage performance is electrifying. He is a true testament to resiliency, hard work and dedication. Skye’s strong will has been tested but never broken. Suppose he can overcome a life of homelessness, heartache and tragedy to become an inspiration to his community. In that case, nothing in this world could stop them from succeeding as destiny awaits him.