“My Songs Will Forever Be Dirty…We Are All Sinners” – St. Janet

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Parents were appalled, religious persons angry when Omotoyosi Kayode Iyun, popularly known as Saint Janet, came out singing with vulgar lyrics in Yoruba, but ever since she started, she’s been selling like every other artiste despite the controversies surrounding her songs. Her songs have become part of choice playlist in many Yoruba parties, and in relaxation joints.

St Janet told Punch she’s a Christian, although many argued ‘was’ should have been more appropriate. She was a chorister at a white garment church. But she left the Church and decided to pursue a career in Juju/Highlife under a popular Abeokuta artist, Los Kenge. She was there three years before moving on.

She’s not only into vulgar lyrics; St.Janet said she sings whatever song seems suitable for a particular gathering.

“You cannot sing songs for a wedding at a burial, she said. “I know the songs I have to sing on different occasions. I know what to sing at different times,” adding, “Not all my songs are vulgar. I know that more than 70 per cent of the people who have listened to me feel that way. But it is not true. I am talented. I am gifted. I am an all-rounder. I give you what you want. There are some shows where you will not hear me sing lewd songs. It all depends on what the people want. I give them what they yearn. I do gospel as well.”

Unbelievably so, St. Janet sings gospel? “Of course, I sing gospel songs,” she says. “I know it is unbelievable, but there is no singer that will say he/she did not sing gospel at one time or the other. My case is not different. And like I said, people ask me to play the lewd songs, especially at private parties. They invite me especially because of such songs and I play such for them. I also play lewd songs at clubs. But I wouldn’t really sing such at open parties.”

St. Janet sees nothing bad in her songs as she says her kids are free to listen. She’s got a 4-year-old now, and will let the kid listen, probably when he’s 18.

“I can only allow him to listen to them when he comes of age. My baby is just four years old. I will not allow him to listen to it for now.”

When St. Janet brought the profane songs to the Nigerian market, her CD was quickly banned, but Janet laughs off the ban saying, the same people who banned her listen to her songs.

“That was long time ago. I was able to weather the storm. But the banning of my CD made me popular. Now, virtually everybody knows Saint Janet. The same government officials that banned my songs listen to my music. I don’t want to mention names but I play for them. They invite me to private parties and I perform there.”

Who knows what’s next in her kitty, as St Janet says she’s dropping a new album soon.

“My album will soon be ready. It is coming out very soon and I titled it ‘Surprise’. I want people to sit back and ask themselves if this person is really Saint Janet. I want them to wonder how I was able to sing like this. That was why I titled it ‘Surprise’.”

It was rumoured at a time that St Janet caught her husband in bed with her daughter, but the queen of vulgarity says it’s far from the truth.

“I say it again, there was nothing like that. It didn’t happen. I don’t want to talk about it again. I don’t know who came up with that story. It was actually the reason I moved from where we were staying. But I ask, who is this daughter? I don’t even have a daughter. I see it as the work of detractors. I felt so bad initially. But then, when the rumour was on, that was when I was getting a lot of invitations to come and perform. So I had to immerse myself in my work. I have put the detractors to shame.”

And Janet has a husband who loves what she does…including her lewd lyrics…

“My husband doesn’t complain at all. Back then when I would be performing, I would look back and he would give me a sign to ride on. He would see that people were enjoying the music, so he would encourage me to go ahead.”

…and also parents who don’t see anything bad in profanity. “They said the same thing as my husband. They reasoned that if people out there were enjoying themselves and feeling happy because of my songs, who were they to stop me? They were okay. My parents were disciplinarians. My father was a school principal and my mother was a headmistress. But they know that people love me. Initially, they didn’t support this, but they saw how people love me and they had to give their support.”

Be careful if you listen to her songs; St Janet says she doesn’t do what she says.

“In this life, there are people who ‘say and don’t do’ and there are people who ‘do but don’t say’. I am in the group of people who ‘say but don’t do’. I can only sing, but I don’t practise what I sing. I told you that I am very shy in real life and that is not a lie. I am so reserved. I never knew I would get to this level that I am now. Many years ago, there was this album that I did, but the person who would have been the marketer (I don’t want to mention his name), was asking for what I couldn’t give him. He was asking for s*x before he could market my CD. But this is not the first time such is happening. It happens in every industry, including the film industry, and even the banking sector.

“It couldn’t have been because I sing vulgar songs that he suggested such. In fact, there was nothing lewd in that album. Immediately he asked for sex, I left his office without saying goodbye.”

Say whatever you like, St Janet will never stop singing her kind of songs.

“I don’t think there will ever be such a time in this world, we are all sinners,” she says. “I am not the first person to sing this kind of songs.” Not even her husband can stop her now; “If he didn’t want such songs, he would have stopped me long ago. But now, I am unstoppable.”

3 COMMENTS

  1. U dose’nt pratice it who knows,but if i should say direct your songs mainly on gospel if turely you are talented you wil see the supernatural hand work of God in you.

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