The Nigerian-born global music star unveils her latest album, marking a new direction for the artist since becoming a mother.
As the greatest icons of the music industry will demonstrate, artists are constantly evolving – whether in aesthetic or musical stylings – in order to keep their loyal listeners entertained and engaged. And, having recently entered her own new era of creative expression since becoming a mother, the Nigerian-born artist Simi shows us exactly how it’s done — while still remaining true to her afro-leaning soundscape.
Creating one of her most personal efforts yet, Simi unveils To Be Honest: a compilation of eleven soothing tracks that depict stories of love, life, heartache and elation. And, with singles like “Story Story” and “Balance” placing Simi’s ethereal vocals on a pedestal, it is safe to say that change has never looked (or sounded) better.
In her own words, Simi explains, “This record To Be Honest is a compilation of my stories and some really candid things I’ve wanted to say for a long time. It has a couple of songs for love and vibes because who doesn’t love, love and vibes? It’s different from anything I’ve done before, but it is also stamped with my signature inflections and emotions and passions. People see my face or hear my voice and think they already know what they’re going to get. Well, they don’t. To be honest, they don’t!”
To celebrate the release of the album, we spoke with Simi about her experience during the pandemic, her biggest learning curves and what she is most excited for next. To stream the album and for the full interview, scroll below…
Hey Simi! How are you? How has this past year been?
A little crazy. A little intense, but a lot exciting.
With everything that happened during the pandemic, was your creativity affected?
I was pregnant and became a mum during the pandemic, so my priorities already shifted at
the time. I don’t think I noticed an effect on my creativity as such.
And how did you first get into your musical journey, and what inspired you?
Just a pure love for melody and words. I was so drawn to music. I loved it and I wanted it. Still am, still do.
And now you’ve gone on to bag awards and millions of streams, how does this make you
feel? Do you feel any pressure at all?
I feel grateful. It’s not exactly easy to thrive in this industry. You have to be consistent. Your energy has to be vibrant through it, or it’ll show when you’re not giving it your all. And in an industry that doesn’t appreciate you taking breaks, it’s tough to always need to have your energy on a hundred.
And you’ve just dropped your fourth studio album To Be Honest. First of all, why the name?
It’s an honest album. That’s what I was going for. Speaking my truth.
And the creative process, what was that like? What was the most memorable experience?
I have so many memorable experiences – but I think working on the features and the process
that got me there were the most memorable. I’m really glad I stuck it out though. Those two songs are some of the fan favourites so far.
Looking back, do you regret anything?
No. I know it can seem a bit cliche to say I learn from things and so I have no regrets, but I
genuinely have no regrets with this. I did exactly what I wanted when I wanted. Truth is people are gonna like what they like and there’s nothing that everybody likes. I already know that, so it was important for me to create something that I liked and have it cater to people that liked it too.
When creating the album, how did you know it was complete? What was the deciding factor?
Me. It just felt right. I kept tweaking and changing this album for months, because it didn’t feel right. When it felt right, I just knew it.
And what do you hope people take away from your music?
That I’m everything I think I am.
What is next for you? What are you most excited for?
The videos. Touring. My next projects.