• "Godly" is the No. 1 Song of the Year

Written by: Ayomide , Oriowo

"Godly" started the year at No. 1 and ended at the top

After it was announced by the host of TurnTable Spaces that Omah Lay’s “Godly” will be spending a record-setting 10 weeks at the summit of TurnTable Top 50, one of the speakers sighed loudly in a manner that would suggest to anyone listening closely that the sigh must have been accompanied by a shaking of the head and a feeling of bewilderment possibly captured by the question “how?”. These assumptions would be confirmed minutes later when this speaker shared her perplexity on how it beats her imagination that “Godly” had sat comfortably atop Nigeria’s biggest chart for 10 straight weeks. As far as she was concerned, it wasn’t even a special song and definitely not one of Omah Lay’s best works. For her, it just doesn’t add up. A couple of other speakers spoke in agreement while others disagreed as to the song’s credentials.

The polarizing views “Godly’s” unbelievable record generated didn’t stop it from extending its stay at the top of the charts for a record 11 weeks. The Twitter Spaces conversation happened months ago and Omah Lay’s “Godly” has since been replaced at the summit of the chart. However, that sustained moment of success that left several people with varying thoughts was a pointer to the staggering success “Godly” was and the inevitable record breaker it would become. 2021 is a big year for Nigerian music. Records were broken and new ones erected in their stead. The big names ascended to a whole new level while the upcoming superstars remained on track for global domination. In 2021, Afrobeats gatecrashed the global party and floated into every corner of the globe in an unprecedented manner. The race for the biggest song of 2021 was bound to be an interesting one as both halves of the year saw several hit singles enjoy varying levels of domestic and international success. In 2021, an Afrobeats single was able to justifiably lay claim to the global song of the summer while another can undoubtedly be called the viral global hit of the year.

Unsurprisingly, the NO.1 song of 2021 as it turns out is a single that has consolidated its position not only as a chart-topper but also as a hit single that had an enduring grip on the industry. Omah Lay’s “Godly” is the NO.1 song of 2021 as it surpassed other contenders to pull the biggest numbers across streaming platforms, radio, and TV. For many, this might come as a shock, and understandably so. “Godly” is a 2020 release that crossed over into 2021 and dominated the first half of the year with chart-topping and record-breaking numbers and even this to them shouldn’t have been enough to propel it to the summit of the end of the year chart. For others, “Godly’s” unmatchable 2021 success might not come as a surprise especially for those who followed its unparalleled charting record.

“Godly” was released as the lead single of Omah Lay’s 2020 EP “What Have We Done” which captured Omah Lay’s disbelief at his sudden and exceptional rise to fame. The single was well received and quickly rose to top the charts but nothing could have prepared Omah Lay nor the industry for the colossal hit it would become. At its peak, “Godly” divided opinions and had many searching for the hidden secret with which it became a chart-topping listeners’ favorite. To some, Omah Lay’s travails in Uganda was a major boost for the song's success. For others, the answer was inherent in the song. The secret lies in “Godly’s” content, its sonic appeal, and the catchy nature of its simplicity. At any rate, all these factors must have played a role in making “Godly” the NO.1 song on TV in 2021, NO.1 most-streamed Afrobeats song on Boomplay, and NO.2 most streamed song on YouTube NG.

For what it’s worth, “Godly” is good music that draws on the personal realities of the singer to pass across a message that captures the emotions, hopes, and gratitude of listeners in a manner that makes it relatable, indefinably enjoyable and widely appreciated.

In the year in view, “Godly” led the streaming charts by accumulating over 41 million equivalent streams. It led the TV charts with a whopping 240 million impressions. And it is the second most played song on radio captured by its 1.1 billion radio impressions. “Godly’s” sheer record leaves no doubt as to where it belongs – the very top. For Omah Lay, it has been a successful 2021 albeit he didn’t enjoy as much time in the limelight as he did the previous year. He nevertheless had three NO.1 singles (“Godly,” “Forever remix,” and “Understand”) amongst which is the overall song of the year. With an album on the way and his eyes on the biggest stage, we can all expect Omah Lay to keep it Godly in 2022.

This article is an excerpt from the vol 002 TurnTable Magazine, you can read the full magazine here

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