You probably have noticed something different about Saeon these days, and you won’t be the only one. Without necessarily going through a big “rebranding” moment, Saeon has switched up her style both musically and physically.
Back in 2014, Saeon scored, what many will call, a big hit by any standards with her single, Boogie Down ft. WizKid. However, the controversy surrounding the song somewhat overshadowed just how dope the song actually was/is. But let’s take a step back and talk about how Saeon actually started her journey in music.
Saeon discovered her talent at the very young age of 6. She was introduced to music by her Dad, but it wasn’t until much later that she would put her talent to use. Soon as Saeon completed her MA certificate in International Relations, she had a family expressed to them that she wanted to pursue her career in music. She was given their blessings, and has had their support ever since.
“I remember partaking in a competition called “The Underground” in 2009 alongside about 9 other guys and I being the only female came out as the first winner and “Queen of the Underground”. It was empowering. I had won something.” Saeon recollects during a talk with her.
She found herself to mentions on blogs such as right here on our bubbling under segment, Bella Naija, NJOK and Gidilounge which gave her a platform to keep releasing demos including “Fever” produced by the late Sazzy (RIP), “Let It Go” produced by IBK SpaceshipBoi” and co produced by Cobhams Asuquo, Recover From You ft Falz produced by JRS all of which were popular underground songs.
Moving Back To Nigeria
A few years later she decided to make the move back to Nigeria from the UK.
“I was finally done with school, I plunged into the industry with no guide or mentor. I was an independent Artiste who didn’t know the industry or even take the time to study it. I felt I was ready! I had my family’s support. In 2012, I did a cover to Brymo’ Ara and gained popularity for it after Brymo himself released it on the radio as the best cover he had heard, giving me an introduction to the industry. I remember it getting massive Air Play and people reference it till date. I put out my 1st single “Lie” ft Flowssick based on ideas like “you need to do something for the streets/clubs, you need to do something more Nigerian” — because in all honesty, I sounded too foreign. And Lie got some attention. This should have propelled me but it wasn’t. Not like I had hoped it would. I didn’t have the numbers from before where I’d release something and get 10,000 hits in a day. My numbers weren’t growing.” – Saeon
Boogie Down Controversy
However, all that changed in 2014 when she released Boogie Down featuring WizKid. The song was released before she was signed with a label, and instantly became a huge hit everywhere. With growing popularity of the song, Saeon expressed her displeasure with WizKid’s support for the single, and received a major backlash from fans, and colleagues. She’s stated that some point she even received death threats.
“I suffered the backlash from that as people came for me. Some people I knew and most that I didn’t. I actually had a couple death threats and tonnes of negative comments sent my way. I pretty much was on my own. No one had my back. Not in public. I remember getting just 2 phone calls from a couple people I considered as friends but majority didn’t say a word. It wasn’t like they were obliged to but it would have at least encouraged me. It was as though the entire industry was against me. It was one of the hardest experiences I’ve ever faced. The controversy never started out as a publicity stunt but happened to take place just before I released my first body of work, “I Am Saeon – The EP”, which was supposed to showcase my R’n’B strengths. Instead, it drowned in the controversy. To make things worse I had no support from the label as they held off completely from promoting me barely 5 months after signing me. I wallowed in it. Honestly, it broke me. Not just the “altercation” — for lack of a better word — but the fact that no one, not even the label stood with me, making me feel like I was wrong for spending my money and voicing out because I felt I hadn’t gotten my money’s worth. I felt even God wasn’t with me… Now that I look back, I can admit that I was wrong, wrong for not being tactful in expressing myself and wrong for not being smart about it after the fact. I should have used the buzz from this experience to keep pushing out content because as they say. All publicity, positive or negative, is good publicity.”
She went on to tell us that she actually recorded a diss record, but decided not to release it. She said she’d rather not have focused on the negatives, and decided to reevaluate, regroup, and let her music speak. Asked whether she’ll ever work with WizKid in the future, and her current relationship with him she responded positively.
“We are cordial. We were on the same table along with Peter P Square and Vanessa Mdee at Quilox about 3 weeks ago right after my Industry Nite. Peter was tryna ask Wiz if he knew how much of a dope performer Saeon is. LOL. He laughed and told Peter we have a song together. Per working with him in the future, definitely! I’m a business woman so if there’s money to be made, best believe I’m gon work! I however won’t be paying this time.”
If you’ve been a long time fan of Saeon you would’ve noticed that shortly after her controversy with WizKid, she went on a hiatus. Even though she still performed a bit around, she didn’t put out much music for a while. This came about from a period of depression and gloom as it pertains to music.
“I lost my zeal. Music had always been my to go place and I hated it. It brought me pain. I became so vulnerable. I hit rock bottom. I even found myself at a point where I was ready to quit music. I actually did. My passion for creating music died. I died. To self and to my past. I told my family I didn’t wanna do music anymore.I actually I joined jobberman and various other job seeking sights. I started looking for schools. I wanted to leave the country. I wanted to get out the industry that had taken all of me and not given anything in return but a bad reputation. I was done.”
It was at the depths of her depression that she said she found God, and somehow got the spark and charge back in her life, and consequently her music career. It was then that she decided to get back into music, but this time a bit differently.
“I was going do it my way. Do it how it came to me. Straight from my heart. No filter. I was going be myself. I was going do me. Whether or not I had any support from the label. I had God, my family, my talent. Therefore I had the tools to succeed. “
Emergence of Boy-Chick
In what many thought was very different from the expected, Saeon put out a freestyle to the RICO track (made popular by Meek Mill and Drake). The reaction was very positive. So positive in her opinion that she decided to bring out her own style of doing music; a mixture of Rap, Hip-Hop & RnB. TrapnB in her words.
She put out “Stori”afterwards, but it was the release of De Be ft. Ycee (and the all star remix with Eva, Ozone, AT, Poe, and Tesh Carter) that really kicked things off for the next chapter in her music.
“More than just a single. It was a movement and I couldn’t do it on my own, hence the various features. But more than that, it was a voice. It is the Nigerian Dream!
#DéBè signifies not just the english conjugation for “To Get There”, It stands for Hope, Perseverance, Patience, Toil, Sweat, Trials, Failure, Retries, Repeats, Faith, Hardwork, Relentlessness, Assuredness, Grace, Favour and eventual Success. #DéBè is the Nigerian Dream!!! It stands for the light at the end of the tunnel, the beginning right after the presumed end. It is My Motto. My Weapon. My Storí. My Gift. It is my way of inspiring everyone on their different paths to coming to their open space and fulfilling their destinies. My way of letting us know we’ve got to be ready to run our individual races ourselves like it were a one man relay. That we’ve got to work hard and stay on our toes always. That we’ve got to be ready to do what it legitimately takes to get to where we’re destined to be. That we’ve got to pay our dues and go through the process. That even though God is the author and finisher of our faiths, our success lies in our hands. That we’ve got to grab our destiny by its cojones. That we’ve got to stop caring what people think and start believing in ourselves. That we’ve got to be sure of ourselves and not doubt our abilities. That God put something inside of us that makes us unique. That we weren’t made to be like anyone but ourselves. So we don’t need to follow the crowd or copy. We have our individual blueprints and even if anyone stole it, they won’t be able to execute it like we would. So we need to hold on and keep the consistency. Keep aiming to be the better version of the best version of ourselves. Keeping our heads up and eyes on the prize and we will eventually #DéBè at our appointed time!” – Saeon
6 months after its release Dé Bè is still a hit, and getting more and more popular.It’s been on countdowns, airwaves etc, and has been the signal for the new Saeon. It’s also opened her up to a new set of fans that she might not have had previously. The “Morudans” as she calls them.
She’s in the process of recording for her mixtape which will drop before the 3rd quarter of the year, and is really excited about the look of it. It’s going to centered about her rebirth, learning, owning up to who she is, and will be most definitely TrapnB.
On a final note, we asked Saeon what she plans on accomplishing in music & life when it’s all said and done, she replied:
“I intend to create a platform where the not so privileged can channel their skills to make a name for themselves by realising that being born into a not so fortunate circumstance doesn’t mean you have to remain there. My music is my voice, but it also is just the surface, the half of it all. I wanna be successful and in turn use the platform I gain from that success to pave the way for others.”