Essentials: Lojay Is the Star of the Show on “Gangster Romantic”
Lojay was introduced to the music scene in an interesting way. Now, he’s the star of the show on “Gangster Romantic”.
Clarence Mac Ebong
●16th March 2023
Lojay was introduced to the music scene in an interesting way. Putting out your first major project in collaboration with Sarz, which includes a Wizkid feature, is no small feat. However, there was a tendency to feel like these big names held his hand and he got that level of exposure because of them. It’s like the President bringing their child to their first day of school; invariably, that child will get a lot of attention.
And he did well on his first day. Even though Sarz created a good background on which he could act, Lojay’s performance on LV N ATTN showed that he’s a big game player. One thing that stood out was his songwriting, as he crafted melodies that stood in tandem with Sarz’s innovative production. As “Monalisa” quickly became a staple of Lagos nightlife and enjoyment, we quickly found more things that endeared Lekan Osifeso Junior to us all.
He gives more of himself on his latest project, Gangster Romantic. Lojay does not hide that he’s a man who loves women — they’re all he sings about. What makes him stand out from the other lover-boys is the uniqueness of his delivery. He sways between different shades of love, lust, and every situation where these emotions rear their heads. Whether enduring the pain of heartache in his car or spraying money on excited, dancing women, Gangster Romantic encompasses a blend of difficult and fun feelings that holds something for every listener.
This time, Lojay is the star of his own show. Although he gets strong assists from personalities like DJ Maphorisa, Kabza De Small, and P.Priime, he basks in the spotlight that shines on him throughout the project’s 20 minutes. “YAHWEH” thrusts us into the Lojay experience; one that is characterized by airy, slow-tempo production as he uses his words to paint graphic mental images as he sings, “give me devotion properly/i don’t need no secret love, i only need your company.”
He alternates to another end of the spectrum of love and lust with “MOTO”. Feelings of regret fill his vocals as he relays his lyrics. “I know you poison deep in my soul/but I no fi leave you alone-lone”, he sings, pointing out the incompatibility of himself and his lover. Lojay adequately lets us in on a softer side of him that we are not used to.
What we are used to, however, is the Lojay who makes bangers. “CANADA” was released as part of the project’s rollout and it did catch the ears of most people who got in contact with it. On “AVAILABU”, though, he takes it up a notch. It’s euphoric and dance-inducing; a worthy soundtrack to the nightlife that Lagos generates. Lojay laces Magicsticks’ production with playful wordplay and the track almost literally comes alive.
He relays the peculiar nature of love in the lives of everyday people. He crafts a story-like sequence for Gangster Romantic and it ends with “OVA”. “Like Romeo loving Julie/issues, issues issues we can never sort out truly”, he sings, detailing one of the lowest points of love and the pain of detachment. There’s never a middle ground when it gets to rock bottom, and through his lyrics, we are immersed in feelings we know well.
Lojay’s second project has placed him in better stead amongst some of the best in Nigeria’s music scene. Not many people can do what he does. He has grown into his own with Gangster Romantic and reinforces himself as a voice to be reckoned with. Now we wait for the album, Lolo.