Listening EAR: Tribute To The Nigerian Lady of Songs – Christie Essien Igbokwe

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Yesterday, I was shocked to hear the passing away of one of Nigeria’s musical legends I’ve always loved and cherished. She stood toe to toe musically with her male counterparts in the 80s and her 1981 “Ever Liked My Person” LP took her beyond the shores of Africa.

Her smash hit “Seun Rere” made it to No4 in our 360NoBS special 50th Independence day compilation of Top 50songs (1960 – 2010). Christie Essien Igbokwe was the Lady of Songs.

Christy Uduak Essien-Igbokwe born on 11th November 1960, was the Nigeria’s lady of songs. During her heyday she was the grand dame of Nigerian pop music, and nicknamed the ‘First Lady of Song’.  She began her musical career in Secondary School singing at various clubs. In 1976 she joined the satirical NTA series Masquerade. Her short role in that popular sitcom put her to the limelight and in 1977 she launched a professional music career, aged 17.

Many of her albums became hit records, but none came close to the success of her 1981 hit album “Ever Liked My Person” which had the massive hit track “Seun Rere” produced by Lemmy Jackson. She helped put Nigeria’s name on the world music map with this evergreen track.

Always at the forefront of issues affecting women and children, she played remarkable roles in some of the early Nollywood flicks such as Flesh and Blood and Scars of Womanhood, both of which addressed issues of child abuse and female circumcision.

With a desire to make life better for Nigerian artists, she is credited as having initiated the first meeting that brought about the formation of the Performing Musicians Association of Nigeria, PMAN in 1981. A year later, PMAN was founded and King Sunny Ade became the president with the late Sonny Okosuns as his vice, while she was the National Treasurer. Between 1996 and 1999, she became the first female PMAN president.

Her Honours include Nigerian lady of songs award, Africa music mother award 1984, international special achievement award Mexico 1983 world song festival award Los Angeles queen of music international award association of theatre arts practitioners Lagos 1996 outstanding achievement in female uplifting, just to mention a few. She has also contributed enormously to nation building, peace and tolerance – which, alongside moral uprightness, remain constant themes of her songs.

Till her death, she was the chairman and managing director of Soul Train entertainment limited. She had her Golden Jubilee last year November 11. She was our Golden Diva.

I hope you enjoy the songs put up as a tribute to the Diva; her music will forever be with us.

R.I.P. Christie Essien Igbokwe

Christy Essien Igbokwe – Ever Liked My Person

[audio:|titles=Christy Essien Igbokwe – Ever Liked My Person]

Christie Essien Igbokwe – Ife

[audio:|titles=Christie Essien Igbokwe – Ife]

Christie Essien Igbokwe – Ka Anyi Gba Egwu

[audio:|titles=Christie Essien Igbokwe – Ka Anyi Gba Egwu]

Christie Essien Igbokwe – Seun Rere

[audio:|titles=Christie Essien Igbokwe – Seun Rere]

Christie Essien Igbokwe – Shooby Shooby

[audio:|titles=Christie Essien Igbokwe – Shooby Shooby]

Christie Essien Igbokwe – Teta Nu Na Ula

[audio:|titles=Christie Essien Igbokwe – Teta Nu Na Ula]


Slick with his tongue but even slicker with his mind, Oye AKD's huge MP3 library spans over Terabytes. One of the last of his kind, he collects everything from Comics to Stamps to Gadgets to DVDs. Follow him on Twitter @oyeakd as he takes you on a 360 Degrees Journey into Music and everything else related to HipHop


  1. I dont know her as a person but I usually hear her song a lot it is indeed a great loss, who are we mortals to challenge the will of the most high. My heart goes to her immediate family but God will sure give them the fortitude to bear this irreplaceable loss.

  2. We’ve lost one of those that cleared the way for us in the creative Nigeria. Listening to these songs has really brought me back to explain all the imaginations I had as a child. She will really be missed

  3. RIP the lady of songs! Indeed those who God love die young. rember your songs (Seun Rere & Te Ta Nu Ula) as a growing gal & also as Jegede’s wife in new masqurade

  4. As I listen to your song-“seun rere,” I cry deep inside of me. What a great lost. I remember your funny characters in the drama NEW MASQUERADE. I also love playing your soul touching songs.

    I wish the world could rewind back to the good old days…what a life!!

    May your soul rest in peace.

  5. Well done for this awesome tracks. May she rest well. Please where can one get Funmi Adams tracks @ admin? Have being searching for ages to get them. Thanks

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