“Mama Africa” crooner, Yemi Alade, who came to prominence with the hit, ‘Johnny’, in 2013, in an interview recently on Hot 98.3 Fm, said: “I have not adjusted. I have just adapted because I don’t think this growth involves me changing who I am, that is like the most important thing. It used to be difficult but now it is my way of life”, adding that her mother still serves as a check and balance in her life.
Yemi Alade is one of the busiest African artistes as she recently concluded the European leg of her Black Magic tour, which saw her transverse major European cities, with a successful grand finale concert in the Netherlands.
Speaking on the message she tries to pass at every opportunity to perform outside the continent, she says, “I just concluded my 13 cities European tour and the turnout was amazing. I have pretty much been touring for over three years. It’s a big privilege for me. For me now, I think it is beyond the music, I think people also come out for what I stand for, the fact that I stand for Africa unapologetically and originally as I can.”
The successes of Wizkid and Davido, performing at sold out concerts globally have been well documented and publicised, while that of artistes like Yemi Alade, despite also shutting down major events rarely gets an equal mention, but the comparisons do not bother her as she believes there is really no number one.
“What I have done with this kind of career that puts you in the limelight and keeps you vulnerable to everybody’s opinion, is I just have to make sure my opinion is paramount, it is number one. I respect everybody, we all inspire each other in this industry… there is actually no number one because your top five artistes in Nigeria that are the biggest in Africa can shut down the exact same capacity, the same capacity Wizkid holds down in Africa, I hold it down, the same capacity Davido holds down in Africa, I hold it down, the same venues; we all shut them down.
“So there is no number one, and that is the truth, but not everybody will agree to that. People will say Yemi shut up but that is the truth. Why don’t we go ask the promoters, the people who know the numbers?”
She also announced that she would be going on her tour of Canada at the end of July and was working on her concert back home in Nigeria soon.