Legendary ‘Senwele’ Singer, Iya Alaladuke Recounts Her Unforgettable Experience

Music legend, Hawawu Alake-Adisa, popularly known as Iya Aladuke Abolodefeloju, says an unforgettable incidence in her career was when she lost her grandchild to an accident in a vehicle she had received as gift.

The 86-year old creator of Senwele Yoruba music genre told the News Agency of Nigeria in Ilorin that the accident occurred three days after she took delivery of the vehicle given to her by her fan.

“Being a musician is a difficult task because it has a lot to do with metaphysical power. I recall many years back when I sang and was given a vehicle.

“Three days after I got the gift, I was involved in a fatal accident that claimed my grandchild and the vehicle was written off.

“I had so many ugly experiences and I saw a lot as a musician that almost discouraged me. I wanted to back out, but I persisted,” she said.

Iya Aladuke said music in those days was believed to be associated with metaphysical powers, adding that this informed her decision not to encourage any of her children to take after her.

The musician, who spoke in Yoruba language said: “Music in those days was not a profession you would like to hand over to your children.

“Can anyone give birth to a child and send him to choose commercial driving as profession?

“The plan of every parent was for his or her children to go to school to study and become lawyers, engineers and doctors.“

The octogenarian, who is still active in music, said, however, that the trend has changed with music because many youths are now taking to the profession.

She said many young musicians had adapted her brand — Senwele — for secular and religious purposes.

“I am the authentic Iya Aladuke, the creator of Senwele; but so many musicians have adapted my brand of music, even for gospel.

“Now, there are many musicians singing Senwele and they are doing well. My music has also been used for Nollywood movies.”

Iya Aladuke said Senwele was a divine gift to her, adding that she did not learn the music from anyone but she got her inspiration from God.

She said she had waxed many records and performed for many outstanding personalities, adding that she “is well known by the low and mighty.“

She said the record hit that brought her to limelight was that titled, Won lasewo ni wa (they say we are whores), but that she paid heavily for it.

“I suffered over the record but God rewarded me in His own way. So many people castigated me because of the record; they claimed it contained foul language.

“But because of the wide acceptance of the music, it made me so popular and those who castigated me later came back to praise me.

“I have even done collaborations with young musicians like Fuji stars Saidi Osupa and Wasiu Ayinde. My doors are wide open to others who may want collaboration with me for musical production,” she said.

The octogenarian advised young, talented musicians against desperate crave for wealth and fame.

“They should be respectful, humble and not desperate for wealth and earthly things

“For those who are well known, they should learn to manage their fame by abstaining from scandals.

“They should know that they are public figures and that their acts should be properly guarded to avoid scandals,” she said.

NAN reports that Iya Aladuke co-performed at the burial outing of Pa Ezekiel Adeleye-Apata in Ilorin.

Adeleye-Apata, who died at 100 years, was the father of Mr. William Adeleye, the Special Adviser to the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed.

The burial outing was attended by the minister, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Ms Grace Gekpe; and Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Information, National Orientation, Ethics and Value, Mr. Olusegun Odebunmi.

 

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