By Obinna Fred
I Know It’s Hard , But Boy I Like The Challenge / I’ll Play My Part, And Pray This Love Never Ends / It’s Clear I Want You / I’ll Always Willingly Come , Whenever You Call / Cos Boy Your Force Is Soo Strong – Mya K ( For Now )
Its evident that Youth is one of the Major components of Todays Urban Pop Music, and one of the Major qualifications required to market and promote your Music to people in the same age bracket as you, and though we have some Older Artistes in their late twenties, and early thirties, the Nigerian Urban music scene mainly consists of Artistes who have very well celebrated their 20th Birthdays, save for the exception of some Child Stars, who start a little bit earlier, say for example, A Davido, who was 18 Years old when he dropped his Debut Song Back When.Nevertheless,The Nigerian Urban Music industry is evolving at a Fast pace, and more and more younger Kids are getting involved, which is good, as we have seen the likes of Ozzybosco, Lil P, And Mya K , who’s Music I would be discussing in this Article.
Born Mya Emem Kinlock on the 5th day of May 2001, to A British Father and a Nigerian Mother, she burst into the scene aged 12 with one of her biggest Tracks till date Mr DJ, Which was essentially A Fun record, and was the first single off her Debut Album Blooming Petal which was dropped last Year.The Album Featured Artistes like May D, Jaywon And Vector Tha Viper; It consisted of songs like My Music Featuring Ikpa Udo, Super Star, I Will Survive, and More. The Album (which I just listened to recently) was released by Rocktown records, making her the Youngest Artiste to release a Full length Studio Album in Nigeria, And I Applaud her for that, I also commend the Quality of production, on the Album, by producers such as Fliptyce, Pheelz and Theory Soundz, which was top notch,and crisply mixed,However taking a closer look at the Album and scrutinizing its Lyrics, my attention was drawn to some of its suggestive lyrics, which I feel are quite inappropriate for a 13 year old Girl to recite. First and foremost, no matter how matured a 13 year old is, she knows nothing about love,be it in Nigeria, or any other country in the world, and for that reason, I Feel like she needs a few more years and experience before she can tackle such subjects, on her recently released single with Reminisce Unconditional Love, A Ballad, on which I Think she had a very good Vocal performance, she sings Don’t try to give me the world, I Don’t want it / All that I Really need is your Loving / So Baby Hop in My Ride , where you wanna Go Go Go Go/ whenever you need or Desire, I’ll be there for you / No matter how Big, Small I Don’t care, Still be there for you” .. ,Not only can she not Drive a Car,These are not the Sort of lyrics any one wants to hear from a Juvenile, she’s better off singing Nursery Ryhmes, Christian Songs, Covers Of her Favourite songs or Birthday songs, those would make her more widely acceptable, and make her music more palatable to Kids in her age grade. though I Seriously doubt she writes her own Lyrics, if she is that talented, and has the gift of songwriting, then Kudos to her, and her management could arrange for her to generate Money off that, and maybe she could write her songs for the likes of Tiwa Savage, Ruby, Lindsey and Chidinma, The sort of Artistes whom I feel could easily sing the Lyrics on the aforementioned song without eyebrows being raised.
Many Child Stars have emerged over the years, that went on to become Big Superstars, In America, Acts like Stevie Wonder, Demi Lovato, Brittney Spears, and even the now Controversial Miley Cyrus, all started out as Kids, below the age of 13, but not one of them put out a Love themed song before they turned 18, and though we haven’t had a lot of Urban Music Child Stars in Nigeria, Benita Okojie is a clear pointer, as to the kind of Music Nigerians would expect to hear from a 12 year old.
Though we agree she has a Good Voice, and is probably more matured than other 13 year olds ( as they say ) Mya who cites Beyonce as a Role model, should be told by her management that the time is definitely not right to sing about the same subjects her Mentor sings about, Dance like her Mentor, or even dress like her.Overall, I do think there should be a bottom line regarding the Manner the Music of a 13 year old should be presented to the mass populace and apart from the emotional maturity and mental preparation for the rigorous work Nigerian Artistes have to do before they become successful ( which I think could be a little too much for a Pre-Teen ) , the Musical themes that are touched on need to be carefully thought out, and her Management need to see to it that She toes the right Lyrical Path and guide her accordingly, though If you asked me, I personally think that no matter how talented an act is debuting at around sixteen to seventeen years old would produce the best results,( especially in Nigeria ) and give her the experience needed to tackle such Subjects. Twelve Years is a bit young, even though I think I can bring myself to make exceptions for fifteen-year olds as talented as Benita Okojie.
Obinna Fred is a London-based Journalist who has contributed to a few Blogs on the net, and writes on NS Now as the Senior Editor and features Writer.He loves Hip-Hop and Music in General.Follow @Fazillion