Episode 077

Yemi Alade

Anything you do, put in your best!

July 28, 2019
arts

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Episode Overview

Yemi Alade is known as the ‘Queen of Afropop’! And as she would put it, “I’m living my dream. I’m awake and still dreaming!” Yemi holds her title well as she currently is the first African female artist to get 1 million subscribers on YouTube!

Just recently, she also had the amazing opportunity to work with Beyoncé in ‘The Lion King: The Gift’ album, in which two of her tracks were included — Don’t Jealous Me (Composer, Lyricist, Associated Performer), and My Power (Lyricist, Re-Mixer).

In celebration of Yemi’s recent success, let us revisit our conversation with her for this week’s episode.

“I am from Nigeria, and I am a musician. My sole duty is to take music from Nigeria to the world, representing the entire Africa.” – Yemi Alade

Yemi came from a strict family (her father was a Police Commissioner) that emphasized the importance of education. Throughout school, she loved singing and performing.  In fact, in high school, Yemi was part of a girl group called, ‘Naughty Spices’.

Although she never thought of singing and performing as a career until in 2009, at the insistence of a friend, she entered the ‘Peak Talent Show’. She was shocked to win – so shocked in fact that they had to call her name twice before she realized she had won!

But that was the moment Yemi realized she had talent, and that she could really make something out of it. Yemi still went on to graduate with a Bachelor’s degree in Geography from the University of Lagos in 2010, but she decided to pursue her passion for performing.

Yemi launched her career to moderate success in the music industry. But it wasn’t until 2013, when the leak of a single she was still working on with Producer Selebobo that her career really took off. That official video for that single, Johnny, has been viewed more than 106 million times on YouTube!

Yemi talks about what it’s taken for her to become the international superstar that she is. She also talks about the big dreams she has for the future – she recently performed at Lincoln Centre in New York, but she’s dreaming of one day selling out Madison Square Garden! And with the way this lady is going, it won’t be long before she does that!

what you’ll learn in this episode

  • Who were some of Yemi’s musical influences growing up
  • How Yemi describes her style of music
  • Who she’d like to collaborate with
  • Why the leaking of one of her singles was perhaps the breakthrough for her career
  • What has been the most surprising aspect of fame
  • Why she prefers to be called a ‘King’ and not a ‘Queen’
  • The best advice Yemi has ever been given
  • What Yemi’s definition of success is
  • What she is most proud of having achieved so far
  • The surprising thing that Yemi is most afraid of
  • What she is most grateful for
  • What Yemi’s “I am…” is



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