Giving voice to values: Zesar Mba

Our interviewee, Zesar Mba Sa, is better known by his stage name: Zesario MC! Zesar, a songwriter and rapper,  hails from Evinayong but was born and raised in the city of Móstoles in Madrid. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing and a Master’s in Innovation, combining his artistic skills and professional capacities working in the marketing department of a humanitarian foundation.

Zesar’s greatest professional achievement is to have successfully completed his studies and forged a career in marketing, something he knew that he wanted to do in life even as a child. He knew he had the skills to be good at public relations, advertising, and marketing. Today, he is proud to inspire new generations through his music, helping youth to see in him a light of hope for creative types who like music, photography, and drawing. Zesar sees that young people not only enjoy the rhythm and style of music, but also value and understand the lyrics and messages he tries to share, emphasizing self-improvement and growth.

The nicest thing that can happen to a singer-songwriter is to see young people enjoy and understand the lyrics [of your songs]; to understand the meaning ] and want to apply it in their lives.

Our artist began his adventures in the music world at a very young age, while still at high school. Through music, he found a way to express his feelings, concerns, and motivations. Rap in particular helped him to communicate with the world. Step by step the Practice and hard work helped him perfect the craft. Like other role models featured by Rootencial, Zesar stresses the importance of not abandoning studies and the professional world. These skills can complement your hobbies and allow you to sustain yourself financially, particularly just as you are starting out. Zesar knows his family and their unwavering support has been central to his success.

Family is the greatest driving force that a young man has. When family is close to you, your dreams are closer to being formalized than when you are alone, confronting danger.

Not immune to challenges and difficulties, Zesar believes that a lack of funding is a critical obstacle that that he and other young people face in launching their own projects.   Despite this, Zesar believes that a lack of funding does not mean you are destined to fail: his own success is testament to this.  He says that being black in Madrid, however, can make it harder to make it and succeed. While so-called “positive discrimination” can sometimes create opportunities, Zesar believes that being black counts against you 70% of the time.  That’s just the way it is. However, he says, this reality should not demoralize young black people, in the same way that a lack of resources does not necessarily mean you cannot succeed. Your knowledge and your experiences are still the most important elements.

Giving voice to values: Zesar Mba

Audio in Spanish

Many things in the world need to be fixed, but it is not at the level of regular people. It has to change from people who have responsibility. Those who have more responsibility, visibility and a voice that can be heard. They have to set a good example.

Unlike other countries in Europe and Africa, there are still prejudices against black people in Spain… People you meet at work and during your studies are often predisposed to view you in a particular way…

While Zesar believes that our socio-cultural identity can influence our work and path to success, he does not see it as the most important factor. Instead, he sees our society and the environment that surrounds us as key. For example, two neighbors both living in the humble neighborhood of Móstoles – one black and Equatoguinean, the other white with parents from Madrid – have more in common than two people living in different regions but with similar origins. They might be linked by culture, but may be more divided by their financial status.

Our major obstacle is the lack of culture and long-term vision in which young people today are immersed.

Going back to the issue of obstacles on the road to success. Zesar highlights the lack of financial resources and support to realize one’s dreams. Without funding, higher education becomes challenging. Cultural issues on a societal level, the presence of greed or an expectation to make money without effort are also issues.  Even for people who do succeed and make money, many end up quickly wasting it – perhaps because they never received a good financial education, or did not have to work hard to get it.

You may buy a car with money you earned easily. However, you do not realize that what is expensive is not buying the car, but maintaining it.

This way of thinking and living can destroy relationships and families, and society itself is impoverished. It sets a bad example for new generations. Those who “know better” should set an example to youth, and not hide away and shirk that responsibility.

Family can help to overcome many of these obstacles, fostering humility and helping you to find motivation to persevere. Zesar believes that those who had access to more opportunities and are in a more stable position have a greater responsibility to support others, representing them and amplifying their voices.

Zesar MC’s story highlights the importance of family support, reflection, determination and humility. And reminds all young people that:

Anything young people may admire in me, they can do three times better themselves. Anyone who wants to do whatever they want to do, he or she should do it… If you want something, go for it and that’s it! And when you get there, help others do the same.

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