Oreoluwa Peters: D’banj, ‘Emergency’ and the possible comeback

“Mobolowon a emi ti ja” (I have escaped. I got away).

These lyrics of D’banj‘s 2004 hit ‘Mobolowowon’ may have popped into his head after waking up today, looking at his social media page and seeing the amount of admiration being shown for his new track Emergency.

D’banj, who’s had a torrid time with the critics, premiered the song Thursday night at the Glo CAF Awards.

And suddenly, he was free of the criticisms of not dropping a ‘D’banj standard’ hit since Oliver Twist featuring former Mo’Hits ally, Don Jazzy.

He was actually being commended, again, by critics and fans alike.

Is D’banj back?

Hold that thought. Let’s take a walk down memory lane.

Remember the energy, the passion, the unusual lyrics of then skinny London returnee -D’banj, and how he captivated the country with Tongolo in 2005?

Everybody wanted to know the ‘Koko’.

Remember how we felt that Fela had reincarnated in the form of D’banj when he stepped onto the Headies stage in 2006 to perform in nothing but a towel… and possibly his briefs?

Remember how he and the walking stick-wielding music producer- Don Jazzy- formed the hottest group in African music -Mo’hits?

Remember how he and Don Jazzy were snapped up by Kanye West’s G.O.O.D music in 2010 after landing Mr Endowed- a huge collaboration with legendary rapper, Snoop Dogg?

At this point D’banj was the biggest pop star out of Africa.

Then came another a major event in D’banj’s music journey- The Mo’Hits music group’s messy split in 2012.

This however, didn’t deter the continued rise of D’banj as he scored another accolade after Oliver Twist stayed at number 3 for a few weeks on the UK top 10 chart.

But… the Don Jazzy factor seemed amiss as D’banj replaced his former hit-maker with producers Devee and Jay Sleek.

He also created the D’Kings Media a new music group consisting of Brother KaySwitch and American singer, Jay Sol.

The music group cum record label released the DKM album which produced songs such as “Sister Caro”, “Oyato”, “Bachelor”, “Top of the World”, “Cashflow”, “Don’t Tell Me Nonsense”, “For Example”, “Finally”, “Why You Love Me” and “Obimo (My Heart)”

Critics weren’t convinced. They opined that the self-acclaimed African Micheal Jackson had lost it and should take a back seat from music.

However, D’banj who celebrated his 10th anniversary in the industry last year, was determined to prove his critics wrong.

He proceeded to release songs like Salute featuring Ice Prince, The King is Here featuring Reminisce and Cassper Nyovest amongt others.

While still trying to prove his point, last night, he took a chance and performed a new song Emergency, on Africa’s biggest soccer event and people seem to love it.

Is D’banj really back or is this just a flash in the pan?

While you mull on that, these people on social media appear convinced that the Koko Master is back.


You can listen to Emergency by D’banj below


Oreoluwa Peters is an entertainment/pop-culture wordsmith at YNaija.

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