Popular singer, Tope Alabi, speaks with TOFARATI IGE about her childhood, career, marriage, motherhood and other issues
You often share moral lessons in your songs. How did your upbringing influence that part of you?
Whenever God tells me to record an album, He always tells me how to go about it. A lot of times, He often uses lessons from my childhood to explain what I should do. I was the only girl in the house and I was raised strictly. My mother was a disciplinarian and she brooked no nonsense. There was no room for me to go astray.
Did your mother support your music career?
Yes, she did because she was also a singer. She always sang around the house. She believed that one didn’t have to be immoral simply because she is a singer. Every other member of my family was not pleased with my music career but my mother never took offence. She taught me that a female shouldn’t be too close to men. For example, I was never bathed at the same time with my male siblings. My mother used to check if my virginity was intact every three months interval before I got married; especially whenever I returned from movie locations. When I newly got married to my husband, we went to the National Theatre in Lagos to watch a movie and actors like Yinka Quadri, Ebun Oloyede, among others were there. When they saw my husband, they congratulated him and told him that he had chosen a good and exemplary wife. That made my husband quite happy. My mum was very strict and she never spared the rod. She also showed me a lot of motherly love.
What are some of the lessons your mother taught you that have endured till date?
My mum always taught me to be respectful. She mandated me to always kneel when greeting elderly people and I still do that till date, even for people I am older than.
How often do you get to spend time with your children?
I thank God because He is the one that has raised the children for me. I am very grateful that my children are godly. Even when guys approach my daughter, she tells me about it because she knows that even if she doesn’t tell me, God would reveal it to me. Whenever we are together, I tell them about God. These days, kids have access to information from a lot of places. If God is not involved, they may not turn out well. I have learnt that it is very good to be friendly with your kids so that they can relate well with you. I play a lot with my kids. If children are not shown love in the home, they would seek for it outside.
How do you unwind?
Sometimes, my husband and I travel to be alone together for some days. During that time, I would sleep well and go for massages. I also love to watch movies and play table tennis.