Thrones are meant for people who have conquered a feat and achieved something noble. However, Nigeria’s Mama Africa, Yemi Alade, in an interview with Pulse Nigeria, says female musicians in the industry do not have any thrones; the industry is just a galaxy of stars where everyone is free to shine.
There has been some rumors lately, that the Jonny singer was in competition with Tiwa Savage, and had boasted of filling the gap for the new mum while she was on maternal leave. In the interview, Yemi Alade over-ruled the concept of competition among female artistes in Nigerian, stating that everyone has their preferred artiste and everyone is also entitled to their own opinion.
Yemi Alade is currently regarded as Africa’s pop queen, with two albums to her name, a string of international releases and performances across the continent. She recently released her sophomore album “Mama Africa”, which contains the songs ‘Ferarri’, and ‘Nagode’, with the Deluxe edition already out. She granted the interview, using it as a platform to talk about her new album, her career and her successes so far.
Excerpts from the Interview:
What inspired the switch in your style of music. From Johnny to Mama Africa?
Yes, I agree that there was a switch from before ‘Johnny’ to that point in time after I released ‘Johnny’, But it wasn’t intentional . . . We didn’t see it coming, we didn’t plan it.
It all started from the hairstyle, then it transcend into the attire, and it manifested itself in my delivery and attitude on-screen.
Do you think there is a throne for female musicians in Nigeria?
There are several thrones. If there are thrones for guys, then there are thrones for females. But sincerely, there is only a galaxy of stars. There’s really no throne… The throne belongs to whoever is your favorite at that time.
Do you think your music has become one directional?
People have the right to their opinions, and I definitely know that I’m in an industry where everybody wants their opinion to be heard. The least I can do is sometimes listen, and sometimes do me. If I had been listening all the time, I don’t think I would even get half way to where I am now.
I probably would have quit music a long time ago. Because you even have lizards that have opinions too. If you ask the Lizard next door, the lizard would want to talk. You can’t understand their language, but they want to talk. So opinions are opinions, that’s all.
On Making ‘Grammy’ Music
A lot of people ask me “When are we going to go to the Grammys?…”Will you start making Grammy music?” I ask them, ‘Did Justin Bieber have to change his sound to African music for you people to put it on your playlist? Mba (no). The Miriam Makeba and Angelique Kidjo that we are all referring to, if we listen to their music, it’s just about very African. It’s because they are African, that’s why they are special where they are outside the country…
You cannot lose yourself trying to find what you don’t have. I’m definitely the kind of person that doesn’t like to be in the box, so I don’t say no to any genre of music. I’m just going to go with the flow, and definitely by God’s grace we just will get the Grammy. But I’m trying to be an example of any other person by myself.
Watch the interview below