It was pure serendipity, me chancing upon Tiwa Savage’s “Lova Lova” featuring the resurgent Duncan Mighty.
Resurgent is the most apt adjective for what is approaching a Duncan Mighty frenzy. There has been, in the recent months, collaborations between the legendary Mighty with everyone from Bracket to Reekado Banks then to that monster hit with Wizkid. There had, before now, been collaborations with Timaya and Harrysongs and Olamide.
And now Tiwa Savage.
Two weeks ago, an asinine debate broke out on social media with dimwits claiming that Wizkid had saved Duncan Mighty thanks to the ‘Fake Love’ hit song even though Mighty has acknowledged that Fake Love marked a turn-around for him. That thesis is as inane as the previous one comparing Fela to Wizkid. This is no chicken and egg conundrum, this is turning logic on its head – can the son be the father of his paterfamilias?
‘Lova Lova’ is a love song, one in which Duncan Mighty after serenading Tiwa Savage with some of the sweetest lines a lover can muster in pidgin ends by calling her “Baby Wene Mighty, Tiwa Savage.”
It is vintage Mighty, segueing from pidgin to Ikwere Igbo. He still calls himself Wene Mighty which translated means Brother Mighty. This is Portharcourt’s first son still preaching love and peace even as his home state is torn apart by militancy and political strife.
Duncan Mighty ruled the airwaves from Portharcourt to Port Au Prince for a few years mostly between 2009 and 2012. His gruff but mellifluous voice was instantly recognizable but unlike his peers, Mighty was not overly enamoured of bling and booty. Even on the risqué ‘Blow Am’ featuring Olamide, Duncan Mighty shows restraint couching his booty fixation in a double entendre.
He released 3 albums, back to back, notching up hits like ‘Portharcourt Son’ on which he lays claim to the city of his birth also known as Pitakwa. On that song Duncan Mighty sings “ It is a very beautiful city/ all around the world dem love Portharcourt eh.”
That song was a love and praise song all rolled into one. It was a love song to Pitakwa, a city now despoiled by violence and political brigandage. But it is also a praise song, one that reads like a long chronicle of Portharcourt’s big boys, from Rotimi Amaechi to Nyesom Wike, Magnus Abe to Princewill. The names that pour out of Duncan Mighty’s mouth are almost all tainted now and that roll call now seems like a litany of infamy giving account of all those who ruled and ruined Portharcourt since that song was recorded.
Timaya’s Plantain Boy was in many ways homage to ‘Portharcourt Boy’ even if transposed to Lagos where “from nobody, God made him somebody.”
I mean, if you can’t be PortHarcourt Son, you can be Plantain Boy.
Other hit tracks were ‘Hustlers Anthem’ on which he tells nouveau riches to “train their money.” No one can tell whether he took counsel from his own advice.
Then there were other songs like ‘Ako nu che’, ‘Obianuju’, ‘Ahamefuna’, and the dance floor favourite, “Dance for me” as well as a host of others.
His lyrics on “Lova Lova” seem lifted from the “Dance For Me” playbook. On the old song Duncan Mighty sings about a pretty girl whose winding makes him ‘soji’ while inspiring him to work hard and make it.
“…the way you dey wind am make me to soji o/I never seen a girl wey fine pass you
Every time you passing for road na war/Every other other girl must bow for you
you too fine eh/chai I must try to make my name baya baya
so anywhere you see Duncan Mighty tell am say Wene make am make am.”
There is love and hints of naughtiness but there is a wholesomeness in play.
That same maturity is apparent in his duet with Tiwa Savage. While The First Lady of Mavin is read to do it “any how you like” Duncan Mighty is ever the gentle man.
Here him serenading Tiwa Savage:
Girl my love is sure, no be dice/ Dis your love e sweet, ofada rice/Anywhere I see am, paradise/If dem put am hand na paralyse”
Before ending with the sweetly endearing
“If I break ya heart na oil spillage/I study this your love for freedom college/Nne you too sweet like yam [porrage]/Baby wene Mighty, Tiwa Savage”
Portharcourt’s first son is back, everyone make way.