JESSICA BONGOS – THE TIMELESS MUSICIAN
(By Nwokolo Chibuzo)
I was not born in the sixties, so I cannot say that prior to December 2017 I was well knowledgeable of the name ” Bongos Ikwue”. I remember growing up- my folks would tell me how our present music was nothing but filth, they still say it now though -__-. I feel bad when I hear them say those things, so I always asked what was so special about music in their days. They used to sing songs like Mariama by the legendary Bongos Ikwue and tell me the supposed story behind that song and many other oldies. Recently after hearing Jessica Bongos-Ikwue’s Broken to Peace album the name did ring a bell and I quickly rushed to You Tube to research on Bongos Ikwue and the groovies. It was then I realized that of the truth, People have lost taste for good, soulful music. Thank God for the likes of Jess (as I love to call her) for her sound. As the saying goes; The apple doesn’t fall too far from the tree. I can boldly say that Jessica Bongos is the upgraded reincarnation of her father Bongos Ikwue.
Her ability to draw inspiration from true life experiences and through Neo-Soul music give us such poetic perfection. Jessica Bongos will make you enjoy real music. I’m sure you’re thinking – “What do you mean by this“? If you have listened to Broken to Peace album produced by Atta Lenell Otigba and Tay Iwar , you would understand me. For your sake, I’ll give a short review of 5 songs on the album in hope that you go get the full album.
My top 5 songs on Jessica Bongos-Ikwue’s broken to peace album.
- Blue Skies: To be sincere, when listening to this song I imagine dancing to it with my wife on my wedding day lol. Wishful thinking, right? That’s how Jess makes you feel, her music can cause imaginative minds like mine project pictures and scenes to relate to her music. Even if you have not experienced true love before, Blue Skies brings that type of feeling to live. You feel like you’ve found the one and so you could get so stuck up in it that you place the song on repeat to continue enjoying such feeling.
- You left me: This is that perfect heart break song. When you are trying to understand why he/she broke your heart, this is the song to listen to. At first, I thought this was Jessica narrating her heart break experience until my interview with her where she explained that she drew inspiration from what her close friend was experiencing at that point in time. That is pure art! The ability to bring to live real situations and through music and poetry, relate it to not just yourself but everything and everyone else around you.
- Wheelbarrow boy: The soft piano keys combined with the slow tempo makes this song so delightful as Jessica narrates the experience of an everyday hustler through the vantage point of a little wheel barrow boy. The echoed “Barrow boy, Barrow boy, little wheel barrow boy” in the hook of the song makes this experience more emotional. Struggling to make ends meet, the little wheel barrow boy is unsure of how the day would end or what the morrow would bring.
- Mister Macho man: This song gives that feel that gets you snapping your fingers, stamping your feet and nodding your head to its rhythm. Besides it’s rhythmic vibe, it teaches so much as we see Jessica express her dissatisfaction for domestic violence. She paints the picture of a friend who seems to be suffering from an abusive relationship but is so brainwashed to leave. She spoke at length about this during our interview. Watch the interview to hear more as she advises people encountering abusive relationships.
- Mean what you say: This is the kind of song our politicians need to hear every now and then. The song has a pure old school vibe combined with the smooth lyricism, it’s easy to relate as Jessica narrates “Promise and fail” experiences.
WATCH THE INTERVIEW ON TRUTH MUSIC TV;
Interview continues on the next page>>>