Sound Sultan was a Legend. Not a lot of songs really stuck to my memory back when I was in primary school like “Mathematics”. There was Tony Tetuila’s groovy “My Car” (2001) which became an anthem at some point and Paul Play Dairo’s soothing “Mo so rire” (1999) which was so emotionally charged, you could barely get through the song without tearing up, but Sultan’s “Mathematics”, released in 2000, was the song of the millennium; It was as beautiful as it was moving.
Whoever invented BODMAS would have been grateful to Sound Sultan for making the concept so fashionable. A lot of us, myself included, went on to learn more about the application of BODMAS, thanks to this music. “Mathematics” was also more than just BODMAS for a lot of us, it was also our first foray into soft activism. Singing along to the music, we loudly highlighted the plight of Nigerians at the hands of the Government. A situation which has sadly only worsened, twenty one years later.
When I first listened to “Country Hard” (2020) where he was featured by Eedris Abdulkareem, my first thought was as to how beautiful Sound Sultan sounded on it, even though that was another song that pretty much bemoaned the country’s situation. The same applies to “2010 – (Light Up)” which as the name implies, came out in 2010. Light Up was another song with similar energy; Sad theme but beautiful tone.
Yes, Sound Sultan didn’t fully dwell on sad themes as he does have a plethora of groovy songs like “Orobo”, “Natural Something”, “Very Good Bad Guy”, and many others that serve as testament to his versatility and craftsmanship, A lot of people would agree that some of his most sublime songs were the ones where he boldly called out the government on their inadequacies. It’s sad that he passed on before a lot of improvements were made, we will forever hold him in high regard for using his voice for the greater good of his countrymen.