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Dear Vibe, Could You Please Pass This Love Letter to Yemi Alade For Me?

    This open love letter (as it were) came in the mail from a Vibe reader and it holds quite some emotions about Yemi Alade’s spanking new Black Magic album.
Very lengthy but digest below and let us know if you agree or disagree with this person’s opinion in the comment section.
Dear Yemi Alade,
How are you and your dodo golden skin doing this fine day?
Many congratulations to you on your third studio album (or fourth?) I have supported by getting it on Apple Music. Not because I am a fan ( to be honest, I’m not just yet) but because I believe your government die and I always find myself in your defense in every “Yemi Alade sings crap” argument; telling people how you are farrrrrr talented than they perceive you.
I’m not sure what’s spurring this my oversabi but I saw the little drama following the reviews your album has been getting and I have chosen to butt in with my 5 kobo as a paying listener of your music.
Yemi, you have everything it takes to be “Mama Africa”. You have the right amount of vocal strength, You have the vibe and melody in excess, you have the experience, you have the will power of a thousand men,  you are such a sight to behold and you are blessed to have a badass team behind you.
You have the rare ability evolve into and own any genre you put your heart to. (Like how you went from Afro R&B princess on Stamina to Dancehall queen on Bumbum) This is what exactly makes Davido, Rihanna, Chris Brown and the rest stand out but you haven’t yet maximized this weapon of yours.
One thing is missing and what is missing is YOU.
Yemi, your fans do not know you. Yes, they know your name, they know you own House of Tangerine, they know all the tigbim and kpirim slangs that you stay cooking up for them and all the other stuff that any one can glean from your Wikipedia page but they cannot connect with you emotionally through your music and without this, your music (no music as a matter of fact) will ever be able to stand the test of time.
 Connecting emotionally through your music is what will make people want to go back to your catalogue of works many many years later after you may have hung your career boots.
Wonder Woman stood out so perfectly in this new collection of yours and I’ll share with you, my exact first thoughts when I heard it on the album.
I would listen to Wonder woman again. Sess kept it totally problematic and I am thankful that this is the result.
There is a pattern here. Wonder Woman was written from a place of honesty and reality. You, Yemi Alade are such a woman of steel and you bled exactly that.You sang of victory with a crown made of struggles. I could touch your hustle in between the lines as you stylishly narrated what your life has been since you took your place in the industry. The sampling of the old woman at the end brought tears to my eyes.You should hold on to the production relationship with Sess tightly.
I want to see the Yemi Alade on Wonder woman more often.
 Tell us of your experiences. Tell us of your dirt. Invite us into your world. Mess with our minds with make believe. Tell us of how Taiye makes you feel. I guess Heart Robber would be the song for my last sentence and I won’t lie, it is a nice vibe but I’m not very very sure I would play it if I think that a man has stolen my heart.
I deeply understand how draining it must be to be an alpha female musician in Nigeria. You rehearse in one city today and wake up in an entirely different timezone the next. I get it completely. There’s probably barely anytime to sit down and write true reflections but that’s why there are songwriters now Yemi.
You see the biggest single off Rihanna’s last album, Work, it was mostly written by Party Next Door… unrelated but I like to see you as the African Version of what Rihanna is on the global stage (as Tiwa already took Queen B’s slot).
Sugar, if I were you, not one album will I release in 2018.
You do not just randomly release an album Yemi. Albums should be works of art. Lauryn Hill has only one album till date but you see that Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, even when she’s dead and gone, that album will continue to remain a classic (I won’t even be surprised if it becomes a work of reference in the academic side of music).
I disagree with how your album title relates to the main body. I’m not happy that this work has very low replay value. The flow and how the songs communicate with each other does not do it for me. I hate that the appearance of Falz and Olamide were legit wasted on this album. You want to hear the raw truth? They were in the least way invested in their verses and I do not blame them. They wrote according to a “mindset”. Single and searching? Jantolo? Na bruv.
I fully understand that you very well mapped the Nigerian market and figured that the majority of the consumers who make the mainstream what it is, actually love garbage. I know you tried to make more meaningful music in the early days of your career and maybe that did not work out so I kind of understand the mentality behind your previous bodies of work but for a third album, from someone who is hailed as Mama Africa, baby, this album could have made a much more decent statement…
But what is done is done.
Take some time off Yemi if you won’t hire a songwriter. If you are saturated with the same old experiences, travel. Not for a show. Not with any team member. Not even Taiye. Go to an entirely different city just for the f>ck of it. Soak yourself in a rare culture. Listen to the radio. Tour the clubs. Smoke weed if you have to. Dig the crates. Cross over to genres. Attend shows as a fan. In other words, religiously seek new and fresh sources of inspiration.
I hear that you have some rap background and it hurts me because when rappers sing, they should do it better than the singers in terms of the substance.
“Mama Africa” is such a huge responsibility and I trust that you are the perfect girl for the job but it cannot be done haphazardly. I need you up there in the history books with Fela, Sunny Ade, Wizkid, Angelique Kidjo, Miriam Makeba and the rest. Miriam Makeba was not hailed Mama Africa just because she tied edgy head gears but I’m sure you already know this.
I’ll stop here but I will leave these few words that I hope I won’t later regret.
Your music should not stop as soon as the club DJ shuts down his set (Johnny still gets the most club/bar rotation till date by the way.)
Can I play your music on my way back from the club? Can your music get me through a rough patch?
Don’t let any one lie to you. The message is very important and you have the best platform to share it. I’m not even asking you to become complicated or to be Einstein with your lyrics. The best Nigerian album I listen to this year was from a girl who used the most relatable of words and lines that all of your biggest fans can understand and appreciate. Believe me, if people do not want to hear decently planned lyrical content, they will listen to just instrumental music. (funnily, some instrumental music convey the most message. Quite sure Yanni fans will relate.)
Yemi Alade with the dodo golden flawless skin, your art has the potential to be indescribably beautiful and I look forward to your real bloom.
I hope this counts.
Yours truly.

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