The last time I have felt this amount of excitement about Davido’s music was in November 2014, and it was for ‘Owo ni koko’. I still recall that day. I was sitting in this office, working on this computer, and had earphones plugged in.
The email from the singer’s HKN camp hit my box, and as I clicked play and heard the sounds that came through from thatJfem production, I knew in my heart that Davido has found another hit song. Over time, the single grew in leaps and bounds, and the video served as a vehicle to accelerate it.
This was in late 2014. This was before Davido became an international artiste. This was before his creative control was offered to Sony, and he began to experiment with new sounds that has seen him struggle. This was before he lost his way.
Other singles have come with the same excitement, but it was more for his business with Sony and the promise of one of our country’s artiste becoming a global pop star. It was not for the musical content. It was not for the melody.
But that feeling is back. Slowly, I can feel it coming again, with the new Davido single.
I never knew I would connect again to Davido, neither did I expect to have that part of me rekindled by the singer. But yes, it’s here. And as I feel it coming, I knew in my heart, that Davido, the Davido we know, is back in our arms again.
Tekno. That’s the guy responsible for the new Davido song that is out now. The title is ‘If’, and it has all the hallmarks of what made ‘Owo ni koko’ kick us in the balls and demanded that we all bow to it. Its core is derived from indigenous music, and it sits perfectly along the wave that Nigerians are currently riding on.
Davido and Tekno worked hard together at creating the perfect wavy sound to sit right at the heart of the tempo and sound motif that Lagos and all its surrounding cities are basking in. That drop-stop drumkick, combined with meandering pop synths, and intermittent supply of horns feel like heaven.
“No do, no do, no do gra gra for me..” Davido sings on the chorus, a clear borrowing of Lagbaja’s hit song,’Gra Gra’, which would hit the recognition centers of our brains and pave way for better acceptance.
The video shows Davido, on a street in London, where he is smitten by a love interest played by veteran dancer and video vixen, Nqobile Danseur, a model who has worked with Drake, Wizkid, Rihanna and more.
Recently, she starred in Maleek Berry’s ‘Kontrol’ video. He woos her across various scenes, as subplots involve randy police officers getting seduced by sexy women in front of brothel, while a catholic nun crosses herself in penance for witnessing such debauchery.
There are also Ankara-wearing trumpeters, and snow scenes, which accompany the singer bragging about a familiar topic: His money, and how he utilizes it to attract women.
According to sources, Davido recently clawed back his creative control on the African continent from Sony Music, and on evidence of this record, it’s a good move.
In the past year, the singer has tried to evolve to meet Sony standards and direction, and that has resulted in him making some of the poorest music of his career. But on ‘If’, we get back the Davido we fell in love with; witty, indigenous, generous, energized and creative.
And that’s just how we want him to remain. Never change Davido. Never change.