Monday, April 18, 2016 1:38 am
By Bamike Oba Adeyemi
Let’s start off with a quick little exercise. On a piece of paper, off the top of your head (don’t think too much about it), list ten great songwriters or musicians that you know. Now look at the list. How many women do you have on it? Maybe one, two or three?
If you’ve ever had the chance to witness a music festival or concert, or even see the lineup of artistes performing, the ratio of female to male performers is usually low.
It can be arguably said that male artistes are usually regarded more seriously than their female contemporaries.
Just head on over to YouTube and have a look at the comments that trail the video of a female artiste. A lot of times, the comments relate to the artiste’s physical appearance rather than her talent/performance – what she’s wearing, her physique, her hair, her shoes and on and on.
Now, I’m a female singer/songwriter, so it’s natural that I am concerned about this issue. Now, there are those with no real talent, but a lot of ‘show’. They have adapted the strategy that sex sells, and yes, sex does sell, but not everyone is a buyer, and eventually, even those who buy will still turn around and crave real music from those who can give it, even if they aren’t baring it all.
When women are portrayed or viewed as sex symbols, it gets hard to give any credence or regard to their ability to have a music career.
So we have music producers, and label owners, who approach talented female musicians, holding the promise of a bright career in music in one hand, and in the other, the condition to ‘sleep’ their way to that career.
Now, when you decide to become an Indie artiste, you’re faced with another set of challenges. This is the category I fall into. You’re on a never-ending quest to abate the self-doubt and absence of a steady income, and like a Reverend Father who has answered his calling, you cannot turn your back or quit.
For about three years, my team and I successfully hosted a monthly event until it was put on hold. The organization, calmness, and finesse that was witnessed on stage when we performed, was as a result of the ‘crazy chaos’ that we had gone through behind the scenes. That crazy chaos was almost enough to call it quits, but we kept at it.
In my experience, I have realized that it takes confidence and courage to act upon your vision, and go out of your comfort zone into the world for everyone to see. Without the finances, and necessary moral support, it is even harder; but with the grace of God, your passion for your music, and your determination, you will keep going.
When I added being a mom to the mix of being a woman and being an Indie artiste, I came up with the term ‘Momusician’.
My role as ‘Momusician’ puts me at crossroads every waking hour of the day.
Imagine writing a song at one point, and doing school runs on the other hand, battling to be present at their school activities and planning my ministrations and performances, all the while also making sure that I’m meeting their needs – physical, emotional, spiritual, psychological, educational and everything else in-between.
Right from their birth, my boys were always going around with me, save for a few instances where they had to be babysat, and now that they are nearing teenagehood, I’m up for another phase to navigate them through.
I’d say that in all honesty, it is harder for women/mothers to break into and maintain their stay in the music world. But if women can begin to understand themselves and realize that their femininity surpasses their physical assets, their sojourn as musicians will not be short-lived.
OBA, is a renowned Christian musician, a soulful singer/songwriter with over 2 decades in the music scene. Her blend of Music style stands her out among many others. We can see a soulful blend with Africanness in this piece of music which is OBA’s trademark.
OBA indeed is a divine diva, a brand in a class of her own. She is currently rounding up work on her 3rd album project, in which she has just released a new song to encourage someone to rely solely on the leading of God.
A passionate and contagious worshipper, OBA is also an author, blogger, public speaker. A minister in one of the parishes of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, OBA is married to her friend and partner in ministry and they are blessed with children
OBA, an artist with Kings International Music Network, is out with her official single (Audio & Video) “Lead Me” from her forthcoming 3rd album project.