Album review: “hitsville” by Paul Play Dairo


Paul Play on one of his former album covers.

After learning from Laide of the exschoolnerd's Xanga fame that “forever” by Paul Play Dairo was her and her boyfriend’s official song I kept my ears on alert. I finally heard the song on radio, fell in love with it, consulted with the gods and before you knew it Paul Play Dairo’s third offering since he blew up in 1999 was mine.

The songwriter, producer cum musician and son of the late Nigerian music legend I.K. Dairo must have been up to two things prior to recording the album. Firstly he must have been listening to a lot of Brian Mcknight, Carl Thomas and some old school Hip hop joints from the early nineties. And secondly he must have been like “to hell with the critics who said you can’t score unless you come in a traditional genre while singing in vernacular or pidgin”. That’s because unlike his former albums which had a fair share of Highlife, Juju, Ragga and Nigerian flavour on this album he was strictly Rhythm and Blues with one Hip hop track for effect. What more if not for the guest raps and the accent you probably wouldn’t know the album was Nigerian. Dude just did what was on his mind, the end product of which is a nine tracker released under the playgroundentertainment label (which includes two remixes) with a general theme on love.

Propelled by the smash hits “angel of my life” and “forever” (both of which have remixed versions) which are sure to send any listener into a love frenzy Paul Play shows with this album the depth of his talent in song writing and production. The voice is also great and couples are warned that after a night of hitsville, babyville often follows. As can be expected a few of the songs contain rap verses, Paul Play even dropping some himself in “crying in the rain”. The track “playground anthem” is the exception. It’s a rap song with Playground Entertainment’s own artists: Ruff Rugged and Raw having the rap honours and being on point while Paul takes the chorus. It’s a perfect Hip Hop song and along with “forever” it’s my favourite on the album. This ain’t really a biggie but for Nigerian standards the album design was tight.

Talking about the cons of the album I must say that for a producer an album with just seven tracks is quite pitiful. The two remixes on the album also sucked. They weren’t much different than the originals, just a minor instrumentals adjustment (to make it party worthy) and a change of rap verses. Seems it’s the latest Nigerian fad…oh dear. On the whole though the album rocks for me, on a scale of five I’m giving it four stars.

Listen to “forever” featuring Alibu and B Rite. More info on the artist and album available at

Note: This post is used for the purpose of cultivating interest in the featured musician. It is more of a promotional tool rather than an illegal file sharing means. However, if you are an artist or a label represented here and you would like your music removed let me know and it will come down immediately.

Comments (7)

Nice review. I'll be on the look out for this one. Nigerian artiste will never tire of remixing songs pointlessly

I am so feeling you right now on that album.

I love it, the first time i heard it, i thought it was some American guy who had gone old school, until i heard the rap on it.

Very nice album, my fav track is Forever!

But can't Nigerian artistes do anything without lifting lines from western music?
In the track angel of my life, there's one part that the entire concept and lyrics+tune was lifted from black eyed peas' "where's the love".
Dem no even commot d logo, dem just apply am straight! Wetin?!
I no sabi sing, but I no fit dey thief another man song join my own.

@Anthony Arojojoye: evidence please, i'm too lazy to cross-check. but i doubt sha cos i know “where’s the love” ALMOST word for word.

i'm really in love with that track, i was confused when i first heard that musik, well i really wanna know all about thatz track lyris...

C'mon guys, I was boasting of your song
"Angel of My Life" in Louisiana and you dont even have it on your website.

HOW on EARTH are we supposed to listen to the music???

Do something, please?

I just did a international podcast interview with Paul Play. He was in Lagos, Nigeria and I was in the United States. Thought you might want to hear it.

- DC Livers, managing editor