Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Omawumi: Wonder woman?

The intro for Omawumi’s debut album ‘Wonder woman’ was supposed to show off Omawumi’s humorous side but it did not really work; as the humour is not immediately obvious.

‘Ma fi mi shere’ feat Eldee is the first song. The vibrancy of Omawumi’s voice is comes through in this track. But, both beats and lyrics are a little too high tempoed. The song flitters by before it can be assimilated (yes, even after several replays). Eldee delivers his lines too fast, as if chasing the quick beat and his short verse is not enough to convey his usual dexterity.

Whatever misgivings the previous track might have caused were cured by ‘today na today’. This is definitely Omawumi at her very best. The beat is again high tempo, with a techno feel, but unlike in the previous track it works here, the lyrics really get to you. Heads are definitely going to bob to this one.

‘Love nwantinti’ may not appeal to teenagers, but the older generation will have a blast rocking to the highlife flavour. Omawumi’s vocals in this track sounds one somewhat like that of Nigeria’s old school Diva, the Late Nelly Uchendu, yes, she has that kind of voice.

‘Love it’ featuring Shank does not quit cut it, the tempo, fast and unfocused, drowns out Omawumi’s voice most times. Shank, known more for his hit dancehall single ‘julie’, did not bring the captivating flow he is popular for into this track. In all Omawumi’s strong voice is the only redeeming feature of this track, once again she showed she can sing very well, even in an average song.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Nigerian girls should be mad!

In the last decade, since the Plantation Boys and Remedies before them began a revival of Nigerian music’s fortunes, Naija music has eclipsed Africa and is presently showing the world that Africa has got some groove. With YouTube views in the millions, brands such as P square, D’banj and Flavour have become household names and veritable representatives of Nigerian popular culture.

If music is the expression of a nation’s popular culture, whether adopted or not, one would expect the visuals that go with it to reflect that culture as well as the people that embody it, however, in Nigeria, this expectation doesn’t hold.

Close your eyes and call to mind popular Nigerian music videos of the moment. If you were true to yourself, you’d admit that these videos are very unfair to the Nigerian woman. Video after video, American copycat artiste name after another, all we see is the depiction of women as playthings, playthings that come with the money, the cars, the dope houses and the choice wines—a property that success acquires.
This disrespect of women jars the nerves and grates like mad. More so because most of the so called Nigerian feminists, ever ready to cuss a Nigerian man out on social media, pretend not to notice this constant demeaning of the sex they purport to represent—I don’t want to believe they are okay with this.