We can all agree that it’s been a terrible month for Nigerian women, following the news of the many deaths recorded due to sexual-based violence. As we know, music is the best medicine and it’s clear that we need some upliftment in these dark and bleak times. This is why Genevieve Nnaji’s venture out of Nollywood into the music scene back in 2004 has come back into our consciousness, and 16 years later, sends a timely message we all need to hear at the moment.
In 2004, Genevieve Nnaji released her debut album, ‘One Logologo Line’ and made the confident number, “No More” the project’s lead single. Last year in an interview, she stated that she was a proud feminist, and also that she believes women have rights to their own choices – you can tell that this is no new development as it’s what the entire premise of her 2004 hit.
Against an upbeat arrangement of trumpets and bass-heavy strings, she sings about gaining freedom from a toxic relationship, confidently stating that she will no longer be a party to the bullshit and is focused on her own forward motion. With a soft tone in the verses, she narrates the relationship, singing about the many niceties her lover extended to rope her in before things turned sour. On the pre-chorus, however she declares angrily – and rightfully so –that she has “stopped being foolish” and there will be “no more crying oh”.
You won’t find many Nigerian women singing with as much audacity as Genevieve does in this song, and her resistance to the shackles of patriarchy is palpable. Mid-song, she delivered an impassioned speech in Igbo, stating that she is not his foot mat and that in God’s name, she will make her ex-lover pay for all the trouble he has caused her.
In the accompanying video, we first her see her furiously leaving a mansion with a packed back, and for the rest of it, she’s driving around dressed in Nollywood-glam, performing the song audaciously into the camera. For something she was just trying out, she looks and sounds like she’s in her comfort zone.
Even though Genevieve’s stint in the music industry was very short-lived, she left an indelible mark which we clearly still need today. Beyond this, “No More” actually slaps and would make for the perfect soundtrack for a singalong on a drunken girl’s night.
It has been a rough week for Nigerian women, starting out with the death of Oluwatoyin Salau in addition to the heartbreaking news of Tina, Uwa, Barakat, Farishina and many other’s sexual assault. Very often, society decides to put two fingers up to women and remind us that we are not valued or protected. It’s a very hard reality to be constantly reminded of, and songs like this can serve as a contribution to the fight.
It’s important to find moments of strength within this tough time, and we’re sure this song counts as one. Listen here: