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Gospel singer Oba, berates plights of women in music industry

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The Nigerian music industry has been booming and making waves all around the world with so many songs, videos and awards to elevate the artistes’ world status. Unlike centuries before when the industry was dominated by men, there has been a turn-around as more women are expanding their horizons in the industry.

With something to offer their generation in terms of music delivery, these women have proved pundits wrong that what the men can do, they could do, even better as they strived to make a balance between being mothers and musicians.

Of these women is Bamike Oba Adeyemi, popularly known as Oba. She is one personality to be reckoned with as she is making remarkable mark amid gender imbalance and in the music industry. A soulful singer and songwriter with over two decades in the industry, Oba described the challenges faced by female artistes in Nigeria music industry as unpalatable.

In a chat with Weekend Beat, the gospel act says, “Women are portrayed and viewed as sex symbols in the industry, which makes it hard to give any credence or regard to their ability to have a music career.”

She added, “So many music producers and label owners often approach the female acts, holding the promise of a bright career in their hand with a condition of ‘sleeping’ with them, but at the end leave them with empty.

“With all these challenges faced by so many female in the industry you will rarely see ten great songwriters or musicians making their way through to the top position despite all the harassment.”

Oba while urging fellow female artistes to put an end the notion that sex sells, admitted that: “Yes, sex does sell, but not everyone is a buyer. Even those who buy still turn around to crave real music from those who can give it, even if they aren’t baring it all.”

She continues, “In my experience, I realised that it takes confidence and courage to act upon your vision and go out of your comfort zone for everyone to see what you can do and you are doing. Without the funds and necessary moral support, it is even harder but with God’s grace, your passion and determination will keep you going.”

Asked she maintains a balance between her career as musician and being a mother, Oba said, “when I add the word mom to being an Indie artiste, I came up with what I called ‘momusician’, and this 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 performances, while also making sure that I’m meeting their needs — physical, emotional, spiritual, psychological, and educational — striving to balance between everything.

“I’m grateful for his grace upon my life, right from birth, my kids were always going around with me save for a few instances where they had to be baby-seated. Now that they are nearing teenage hood, I’m up for another phase to navigate them through,” she stated.


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