Yemi Alade’s ‘Shekere’ a Remake of Angelique Kidjo’s ‘Wombolombo’?


Yemi Alade’s newly released track ‘Shekere’ reminds us of Angelique  Kidjo’s 1996 previously released single ‘Wombolombo’

Yemi Alade's ‘Shekere’ a Remake of Angelique Kidjo’s 'Wombolombo'
Yemi Alade

Sometimes last week, reported that Winner of the Best World music category at the Grammy Award teamed up with Nigerian Afro Pop Artist Yemi Alade to create a culture rich video for Yemi Alade’s 2019 release ‘Shekere’.

The duo paired to create the music video for  ‘Shekere’ not long after the Benin national picked the 2020 Grammy award for the best world music ahead of Nigerian Songster, Burna Boy.

Taking Advantage of the spotlight on the Legendary Benin singer,Yemi Alade chose to release the music video for the hit track when conversation on how Kidjo beat Burno boy to scoop the  Grammy Awards was still very much alive.

Shekere which has a mixture of contemporary African style and a little bit of highlife adopted a mixture of Pidgin English and the Yoruba Language which is the native language of the South Western Nigerians.

The song  portrayed the beauty of African Culture in terms of dressing and tune, it  also did not disappoint in term of dancehall and rhythm as the new Jam will make anybody who loves dancing to ‘Shake body’.

Named after the tambourine-like instrument played in various regions of the continent,  both Alade and Kidjo deliver at their best on  the song’s string-filled production.

The upbeat song also includes interpolations of Kidjo’s 1996 classic “Wombo Lombo,” as noted in Pulse Nigeria.


The music video is a colorful celebration of the continent that opens with a shot of Maasai warriors. The Ovie Etseyatse-directed song sees the artists highlighting various African cultures through dance and dress.

Alade was   seen in various beaded looks and ankara prints, while Kidjo was captured wearing  an eye-catching Zulu headdress.

Dressed in full African attire, the dancers imitate steps from African traditional dance.

the duo were also are dressed in African attire and neck graced with pieces of jewelry, a beautiful view.

In terms of vocals and Sound quality, the duo did not disappoint as they are for having great vocals which they utilized in the song execution.


known for her song that in Lion’s king ‘we are one’  in 1998  and  her 1996 hit track ‘Wombolombo’ amongst other popular releases, Kidjo has been in the Grammy nomination as far back as 1995, but won her first Grammy award in 2007 in the best contemporary world music category.

Yemi Alade's ‘Shekere’ a Remake of Angelique Kidjo’s 'Wombolombo'


Her Grammy fame did not just stop in 2011 as she was won the best world music category in 2014 and 2015 respectively.

Multilingual Yemi Alade

Yemi Alade who gained prominence after winning the Peak talent show in 2009 disrupted the Nigeria music scene in 2015 when she dropped her popular single ‘Jhonny’ that aired on different Music channels.

Releasing her debut in 2014, Alade collaborated with producers such as Selebobo, Sizzle Pro, Shady Bizniz, Philkeyz, Young D, GospelOnDeBeatz, DIL, OJB Jezreel, Mr Chidoo, Fliptyce, Mcee and Beat Nation.

The was preceded by three singles: “Johnny”, “Tangerine” and “Kissing”. After her debut release, the multi lingua artist has released two other albums; Mama Africa in 2016 and Woman of steels which featured  Shekere in 2019.

Is Shekere a ‘Remix’ to Kidjo’s 1996 ‘Wombolombo’?

It will interest you to know that the Benin Legendary artist had done used one of the major lines in Yemi Alade’s Shekere as far back as 1996 in her hit track wombolombo where she did not only .

Many feels that the 2019 release was in a bid to remake the song just like when 2face collaborated with PA Victor Uwaifo to remake Baby Jowo.

This might not be exactly a remake as it might only be an attempt by the Afro Pop singer to gain international relevance with the influence the Legendary Kidjo.

It is however  important to note that both songs did not only portray  the the beauty of African Culture in terms of dressing in the music video and tune.

it also adopted a mixture of Yoruba language,even  though pure English was used in the former,  the phrase ‘Wombolombo’ remained a constant word used in both tracks.

Can the track be said to be the remix to Kidjo’s 1996 wombolombo because of the phrase use and it’s its potrayal of the beauty of African Culture?

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