by Ore Fakorede
Omawumi’s If you Ask Me (Na Who I Go Ask) is a gem of a song that stands out like a solitary star in a sky. With her sultry voice riding the waves of Cobhams Asuquo’s jazz-infused instrumentals, the Idols West Africa alumnus paints a vivid picture of the evil that is child abuse. As the brass instruments quieten down at the end of the song, the catchy melody lingers, along with the serious message which it so gleefully delivers.
The best music videos are often simple, with resources directed towards the interpretation of the song’s lyrics, rather than the overpowering of the viewer with graphic-intense, high-definition images. It is this simplicity that defines the all-new video for ‘If You Ask Me’. Shot in a studio, Clarence Peters’ takes are minimalist, retro and lucid, underscored by a properly arranged storyboard and scenes consisting of nothing but the bare essentials. Perfunctory inclusions that have defined Nigerian music videos over the years are missing, as the video is devoid of the exorbitant eye-candy that dominated the Sesan-directed video of D’ Banj’s ‘Mr Endowed Remix’. It also shows no sign of the dinginess that characterized Kemi Adetiba’s sets in Wizkid’s ‘Tease Me’ video misadventure. Rather, from Omawumi’s inspired, traditional get-up to the centrepiece family of three, the video invests in classic, engaging images. Mr Peters gets a thumbs-up for casting excellent mimes to act out the story, and another for his brilliance in using a real, hand-built house with a picket fence instead of a perfunctory computer-generated one.
It is perhaps in the zeal to translate music into pictures without a stutter that the video falters and almost trips over itself. This cannot be more clearly seen than in the overuse of highlighted portions of the lyrics over the images. And can anyone please ask the gentleman at the piano why he wasn’t wearing full-length socks?!
In the end though, the good overshadows the bad and the synergy between the audio and video components only slightly falls shy of being jaw-dropping. We won’t tire of this one easily.
Click Here To Watch The Video