“Okoro” – by Lamili Engel
With its very genre owed to traditional African folklore of the Igbo people of Eastern Nigeria, Okoro – the song – is what happens when folklore is given a re-dress and rendered with a touch of artistic solemnity so that in few words, with adequate repetition and the rise and fall of actions, it is a journey and not just a song with familiar drums when listened to. It’s a brief yet simple story but with a lingering message of unrequited love and heartbrokenness. Okoro’s mixed lyric of Igbo and the popular Pidgin English endears and may cause you to take stock of the days of the Okoro effect – maybe as a teenager or as an adult.
Quite fascinating in rendition with a unique voice, though Okoro did to her a thing that one who loves shouldn’t entertain, the broken girl barely calls out Okoro but reverts to seeing him as “Dimkpa” – an uncommon reference to a man of some proved courage, so that though the persona is in pains, she is still in love – for once in love – especially first love, one remains there despite efforts to suppress it.
His hurting handsomeness and the persona’s love for him may linger and cause a listener to dig deeper in exploring love and practicing tolerance while being vocal about abandonment. Okoro is a beautiful song that may even evoke dancing; one of despair rather than utmost conjugal excitement, of one that’s appreciated.