Photo: Robert Okine / Contributor via Getty Images
  /  08.01.2023

Dammy Twitch’s job on tour is to direct, capture and edit the biggest moments. With an internationally revered star like Davido, that sometimes means holding meetings with the leaders of countries. 

“There are times we got invited by the president. We’ve met with presidents before shows in places like Niger, Botswana, and Equatorial Guinea,” Twitch tells REVOLT. “We might not even perform, but the presidents want an audience with Davido.”

In this installment of “Tour Tales,” Davido’s video director explains the pandemonium the artist inspires by just checking into a hotel, the energy on the “Timeless Tour,” and how he had to prove himself at the Lagos City Marathon. Read the exclusive below.

When and how did you first link up with Davido?

It was roughly six or seven years ago. His manager reached out to me saying, “We need a videographer on tour to cover the shows” and all. So they used the Lagos City Marathon show to test me and see whether I could live up to the task. I shot something at the show for them quickly, edited it, and then they liked it. Lagos City Marathon is a show where people from around Africa come to Nigeria to run a marathon around the city. After, there is a mini concert where artists perform. Davido always closes that show. I shot his set with my first camera. My uncle gave me a Canon 60D. It wasn’t just me shooting the show. There were two or three other videographers. So, we all edited our own footage separately and shared it with the management. They liked mine so much they were saying, “You need to come with us on the ’30 Billion Africa Tour.’”

What do you remember from his performance?

The energy was crazy. When they first announced Davido was in the building, you saw Nigerians going crazy, people tearing their shirts. Davido comes on stage, everyone is going crazy, and people are not even on their phones. People just wanted to have that experience.

Davido flies private and lives a luxurious life. What is the tour experience like for those who are behind the scenes? 

It isn’t even really about the shows [themselves]. Anytime you get into a country, you can feel the energy. I literally have clips of when we enter the country, and you will see people chasing after him. This happens in all of Africa. Me having to be on this particular level of my career already in what was my second year was insane because I expected to really hustle a lot in the video world. I was really hustling in the photo world. I was a photographer first before I became a videographer.

There are times we got invited by the president. We’ve met with presidents before shows in places like Niger, Botswana, and Equatorial Guinea. We might not even perform, but the presidents want an audience with Davido. That “30 Billion Africa Tour” was my first time on a jet. When we walk into the hotel reception area, people are walking into the hotel and are already chasing after us. When we get into the room, Davido goes out to his balcony, and there are many people downstairs. It’s always no sleep. After the show, I go back to the hotel room to edit, and they may go to an after-party. I never really go to the after-parties because I need to edit the show from the night before for him to post the next morning.

Performances don’t always go perfectly. What are some changes you had to make to ensure the show goes on?

For example, say we have a show in Senegal today and a show in Ghana tomorrow for the “Timeless Tour.” We built a bridge for the stage under the lead of Davido’s creative director, Tycoone. We’d need to take that bridge from Senegal to Ghana. There’s no way to take it from Senegal to Ghana. So, we have to improvise with screens to still have that feeling in the next country. This is not a set where you can just build this in all the countries. You need to move it around. It’s not financially wise to keep building it in every country. So, these are things we had to deal with. 

Which Davido songs get the best crowd reactions and inspire the best visuals?

“UNAVAILABLE” goes crazy. “FEEL” goes crazy. For “UNAVAILABLE,” for example, me and Davido talked backstage when we were planning out how we were going to shoot the footage and all that. And I was [like], “Let’s try this for ‘UNAVAILABLE.’ Why don’t you turn around, and let me film you and the crowd doing the dance people are doing for the ‘UNAVAILABLE’ challenge?”  The first country we tried it at was crazy. 

What’s on his rider?

The main things on his rider are Martell and African food, specifically Nigerian food — amala, pounded yam and egusi, jollof rice, pepper chicken. We love pepper a lot. I know you be seeing Davido sweat a lot. It’s because of the pepper chicken (laughs). 

Which “Timeless Tour” date was the best?

I would say it was the first show in D.C. The first show is always the show that really lets you know how the rest of the tour will be. The energy in D.C. was crazy, man. It was my first time in Washington, too. 

Were there any fan moments that stuck out?

We’ve seen fans faint at his Lagos show. The fans caused that to happen because it was a lot of heat. There was a lot of pressure. Davido was on stage, and it looked like the fans almost broke through the barricades because they were pushing. So, imagine how people would get crushed on. Davido stopped the show, went to the front, and took out everyone feeling suffocated.

Who are some of the biggest stars who have seen Davido perform?

It would be people like Lil Baby and Chris Brown. He’s cool with Drake, so Drake invited him to his Houston show to just come to watch the show. It’s always crazy. Everyone wants to be associated with Afrobeats.

What do you have coming for the rest of 2023 and the tour?

The rest of the tour is in September in Europe. It’s going to be a crazy experience. Everyone should watch out for the recap videos. I might not even be there because I might have a family emergency or something. I always make sure the creative process is still there. Even if we get new videographers for this place, everyone has to be aligned on the vision. l always oversee what’s going on even when I’m not there. 



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