In May 2004, after an unusually prolonged hiatus and a rumored faith crisis, American rapper Mase released a song titled “Welcome Back” off his third studio album Welcome Back. It marked the first single that Mase had released since his 1999’s “Get Ready”, after he had taken a 5 year hiatus from the music industry.
Comeback songs are a big part of the Nigerian music industry, probably as a result of the volume of new song releases every month and the dwindling shelf life of an average song.
We have seen the return of some influential Nigerian artistes in the last few months who have been absent from the scene for a while, and it’s obvious that there’s a direct correlation between the particular song choice with which they made their return and the stories, both real and imagined, that led to their going AWOL.
So, here’s a list of some interesting comeback songs and artiste stories that left some viral social media buzz in the aftermath of their release.
MAY D’S ‘LOWO LOWO’
May D was a superstar fixture sometime in the 2000s, rolling with the likes of the P-Square twins who helped him broker a global feature with the amazing Akon.
But in the midst of his growing success, the P-Square twins dropped him like a hot plate of jollof rice and we instantly lost track of him.
There were a few half-hearted attempts by May D to prove himself, but that’s all they were; attempts.
The last we heard of the ‘sure boy’ crooner before his recent comeback was that he was working as an uber driver somewhere outside Nigeria That was before award winning artiste, Davido walked into his life and with the stroke of a pen, added him to the DMW family.
The comeback song of choice that came in the wake of May D’s return was a beautiful rendition titled ‘Lowo lowo’ which loosely translated means, ‘have money.’
The fast-tempo, Afrobeat track tells the raw story of how people didn’t believe he could ever make it again and make money. An amazing comeback song, if there was ever any.
A list of the biggest sounds of the 2000s would have Cynthia Morgan located comfortably in the top five.
She was signed to a record label, something that was harder to achieve back then than it is today and Jude Okoye was her handler.
Several years down the line and many conversations later, the talented queen of reggae dancehall took flight, leaving a well-structured legacy behind.
She soon came back, amidst a social media storm and got industry support as regards how she was ‘treated’ by her former management. The resultant comeback song that she recorded was expected to break new grounds and whirl her back into the spotlight but sadly didn’t do much.
The song, ‘Hustle’ documented her side of the story without losing Cynthia Morgan’s signature dancehall vibe. Whether it was the absence of a backbone support for the new release or a lack of adequate PR or a combination of both, Cynthia Morgan’s comeback song delivered a first-rate giddy tune and catchy lyrics that didn’t get as much attention as it deserved.
TERRY G’S ‘ADURA’
Something is to be said about Terry G’s fierce resilience. The Akpako hit maker known for viral tracks like ‘free madness’ and ‘Ginjah’ went ‘undercover’ sometime in 2011 but resurfaced again around 2015 and has since been dishing out his signature-type tracks, although with minimal effect.
His official comeback song would have to be his 2020 release titled ‘Adura’ which features Skiibii; a track dripping with the compulsory prayer ambience that a typical hustler conjures on their way to finding success.
The mid-tempo vibe pours out with a rhythmic simplicity that wins your heart at first listen. If his subsequent musical offerings are anything like ‘Adura’s’ comeback success, then we are in for a nostalgic journey with the undisputed ‘King of Ginjah.’
SKIIBII’S ‘DAZ HOW STAR DO’
After a drawn out career that included a rumoured death narrative and many more eccentricities, five star music signee Skiibii finally gave us something to work with.
He called it ‘Sensima’, a smooth unforgettable Afrobeat vibe laced with street lingo and a beat to die for. ‘Sensima’s’ viral success was later attributed to the presence of lyrical maestro, Reekado Banks on it, but that couldn’t dampen the genius of the song which easily ruled 2018 and a good part of 2019.
Then we lost Skiibii, even though he churned out tracks like ‘Omaema’ in a bid to make a comeback.
Finally he hit a fast-flowing, high-rise wave with a feature that involved Teni Makanaki titled; ‘Daz How Star Do’ and the whole world sat up and paid attention.
If there was ever number one for comeback songs by a Nigerian, ‘Daz How Star Do’ would be it. The result was a global buzz so big that the song became bigger than the artiste; a feat in itself.
So if there is ever a time that your favourite music artiste gets lost in the timeline of musical releases; maybe, just maybe they are locked up somewhere feverishly working to craft some perfect comeback songs.
This article was written by Henri ‘Yire; connect on Instagram with him here