XTsamurai is the stage name for John Igbinovia, a Nigerian Alternative Rock musician. He is also an accomplished musician, singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, Author, poet and public speaker.
A martial art enthusiast, he explains that the name “XTsamurai” is taken from the word “Samurai” which refers to a highly skilled Japanese warrior and which is translated to mean “One who serves”. “XT”, on the other hand, is an expression for what he calls “The Highest form of virtue and Truth”. In his words “XTsamurai” is explained to mean, “A warrior who serves the highest form of Virtue and Truth, with ‘Strength’ and ‘Honour.”
He has performed in several concerts and events in Nigeria and other countries including Sussex University, The Brighton Dome, and other events in the United Kingdom. In Nigeria, he recounts playing keyboards (and also congas) for the renowned speaker, Myles Munro at an event held at the National Stadium in Lagos. He has also shared the stage with several artist at the Afrikan Shrine for “Felabration”, an annual event held in honour of the late musicial icon, Fela in Lagos, Nigeria.
In the course of being a session musician and performing artist, XTsamurai has worked behind the scenes and performed alongside several artistes including Florocka, Buchi, Lara George, Olan, Ex-O, Eloho, Tinaye Mombeshora and many others.
Currently available for download are “Aiye”, a melodic rock song with an Afro-Cuban feel that is hard to resist, “Closed Doors”, a song written to inspire and encourage – and “Shine in my Light” a hard crunching rock song featuring a friend, producer and fellow Rock Artiste, Florocka.
XTsamurai’s music is distinct as he effortlessly blends Rock with other genres of music in arrangements that are hard to predict. In his words, “When I write a song, in my head, I start to hear the other parts; the harmony of the other voices, the wail of the guitars, the soft under currents of the Cellos, the pads and synths that will complement each facet of the song.”
Like many musicians, his roots were church music, which began after his initial training in classical Piano music. He went on to master several other instruments and began experimenting with song writing and composition and as far back as 2003 recorded his first album with a group of friends, titled “The XTsamurai Project”. It was not released as a commercial album but served as a memento to the group.
Prior to this time he had headed an acapella group known as the “Jubals” while in University, and had been the Keyboardist/Guitarist/Drummer for two fellowships and several parishes. It was at this time he became drawn to guitar music and began to write more guitar-inclined songs.
With a great love for guitar music, XTsamurai’s music is influenced by Rock and Blues guitar. His influences include Payable on Death (P.O.D), Staind, Linkin Park, Third Day, John Mayer, Guthrie Govan and System of a Down, amongst others. However, though his music is primarily Alternative Rock, many listeners have described his music as being “amazingly different”, largely because of his seamless fusion with other genres. He adds a touch of rap every now and then and his rap influences include Dwayne Tryumf, Bone Thugs & Harmony, Da Truth and Eminem