A couple of days ago, Patoranking announced that his third studio album would be dropping on August 28 – rumoured to feature King Promise, Sauti Sol and “Girlie O” partner Tiwa Savage, amongst others we hope. Though the project’s name might seem unimaginative, “”Three’ is a strong number” for Patoranking, as, he explains, “it stands for how I see language. In making the album, we tried to look at love, life and happiness.” The lead single, “Abule” fills us with all three: happiness and life, thanks to the inspirited up-tempo beat, and love, as Patoranking sings adoringly to his “Abule” (hood).
“I’m proud to be from my ‘abule’, Ebute Metta, because to have made it coming from there it’s only by God’s grace. It’s made me who I am today and it’s part of my story. So I waste no opportunity to let people know about my ghetto.”
My People What’s The Meaning Of ABULE? pic.twitter.com/XW93tN2Yx8
— PATORANKING (@patorankingfire) July 28, 2020
Premiering with Ebro Darden on Beats1 Radio, “Abule” is a celebration of Patoranking’s home, the neighbourhood of Ebute Metta. Through the dancehall record, Patoranking is effusive about his neighbourhood, describing his community, the fun they have and how dearly he holds on to his locale – despite his huge international success.
Honouring his “Abule” with this one, Patoranking is encouraging listeners to do the same, going a step further than releasing this island-themed number to create a website where fans can create custom graphics to memorialise their own homes zones: repyourabule.com. Hoping for fans to share dedications to their abule on social media using the hashtag #repyourabule, Patoranking aims to open up a conversation about giving back to our communities and also protecting them.
“I feel it’s important through this new song to give my fans a chance to celebrate their own ‘abules’. And to protect their abules, too. Back in May, my team and I partnered with Ebele & Anyichuks Foundation to go to many ghettos across Lagos to give away masks and relief items. It’s important we stay safe and do our part to protect.”
At present, Patoranking is concerned with the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak that, across the world, disproportionately affects poorer populations, seeking to help them prevent the spread of the virus as much as possible, seeing as how social distancing measures are near impossible in these slum settlements. However from the unjust evacuation of Tarkwa Bay residents authorised by the state government earlier this year, to the demolition of the Otodo Gbame community back in 2017, and the many other forced resettlements (without compensation) of whole local areas, it’s clear that we must all join hands to protect the Abule from another type of virus: the very people who are responsible for doing so.