EXCLUSIVE! We speak to local hit maker Tresor about his international success and growing up in the Rwandan genocide

Hit maker Tresor (French for “treasure” and pronounced “Trezor”) is riding high on the international scene with his song Never Let Me Go (Spade remix) charting at #1 on iTunes Italy. He has opened for Seal, Eddie Grant and The Parlotones. So yes, he is a big deal. We got in touch with him to chat about international success, his childhood and things people don't know about him...

Congratulations on Never Let Me Go (Spade remix) going #1 in Italy iTunes, and kicking dust in the eyes of Justin Bieber, Calvin Harris ft. Rihanna for the top spot! What do you make of that? Thank you very much! It's such a massive milestone for me personally as an artist but also African music in general. I wanna build on every milestone to take my sound to all corners of the globe.         

Recording Never Let Me Go, did you ever thought that yes, I have a hit in the making here? As a songwriter you get a feeling ... have a good song but you can never predict the success  of the music. I knew we had something special but the results have been mind-blowing.

Mount Everest also charted at the top. What do you think is it about your music that has such a great influence and impact on fans and people? All I do with my music is to stay authentic and fuse sound from all over Africa.That's pretty much my main recipe.         

What do you think makes your music stand-out from the rest of the crowd? I stay true to myself and always willing to push musical boundaries with no fear....you can hear it all over the music and that's what really make the music stand out.         

With your success, what does it mean for African pop music? With the current success ,we are surely making a very fresh footprint on the global pop scene. It makes the world familiar to a new a African pop sound and  in the process we are opening doors for future African pop artists.

For those who don't know, how would you describe your music? I don’t really like to put myself in a box by giving my music   a genre...but it’s a fusion of sounds from all over African with pop music undertone .        

You grew up during the Rwandan genocide, did that experience as child ever had an influence on your music and lyrics? Yes most definitely...the experience had a much bigger impact on my character and has shaped in many ways the artist that I am today.        

What was the first musical memory you remember as a child? I was taken to a local church by my parents on that, I started learning how to play drums.

Where your parents happy with your choice to venture into music, or did they had another career in mind for you? My parents initially wanted me to be a doctor or lawyer but I was too much of a rebel since my childhood..... However my sisters have fulfilled their dreams.one is a doctor and another a lawyer...

You have been the opening acts like Eddie Grant and The Parlotones, and more recently Seal. How would you describe those experiences? Always incredible to perform alongside legends

What does music mean to you? What message would you like to portray with your music? For me music is LIFE, with my music I want to ignite sparks of joy and hope where there is none, and also contribute to making our world a better place.

What is the 1 thing people don't know about you? I love long road trips in the wilderness

What was the first ever CD/LP/Cassette you bought? If I remember well, was the Best of bob Marley

So what is next for Tresor? The mission is to make a massive impact globally with our music...We are well on way!