The parents of Iman Conta describe her “as a special, inspiring child who hits the music industry like a storm. Demba Conta and Zannah Hultén are proud of a young girl whose composed song tops music chat, selling more than 80 million copies.
“Iman is something new that the music world is waiting for because during the last decade or more, it’s been too much monotone musically and lyrically,” Gambian legendary reggae star Demba Conta tells Kairo Radio. “Young Iman has come to land on stage with a new stuff. She is very inspiring becasue she is not just singing baby baby. I see so many things in Iman that I really wish to hear a long time ago. That is very exciting.”
Read below what Iman’s parents say about their 21-year-old child daughter.
Demba and Zannah, I have been talking to your daughter Iman whose success we are all celebrating and proud of. How do you feel with this talent she has displayed and this success that comes into her way?
Well, of course, I can only say we are very very happy and very proud of Iman.
Iman has always been a special child. Since she was little kid Iman was her own.
I used to joke with her saying “oh my little girl.” She was around four or five. One day she look at me and said, “dad, but I am my own too.” I said my girl is her own. It’s interesting that she really made a point very early.
She always likes to express herself and when we had our wild discussion in the family, she too wanted to talk a lot. We said you should listen to the old people talking. She she said, “mama, I’m practising to talk, I need to learn to talk.” When she was around five years, she would say “dad, you have been talking too long, now is my time to talk.”
I could remember some of her very interesting stories. Once she went out with a friend and came back angry. She started writing. She was around seven. She said, “I went with my friend. She just left me and went with the other friends.” I asked what is the problem. She said, “I want to write a letter to her.” She wrote: “well I’m not your reserved friend. If you are going to be my friend, you have to be my friend 100%. You should know one more thing, you are not my whole world. you are not half either.” We just shook our heads and said what kind of a person is this?
So this looks like a musical lyric?
We were just taken aback by her already. Susan just shook her and said La Ilaha Ilahu [Allah is great]. I said I think we have something in the house here, we have to respect this woman because she seems to be not having problem making her point.
And when she writes her song Lush Life, that was the first really extraordinary song for Sara that really got the attention worldwide. It was the lyrics people here like; very famous journalists make analysis of the lyrics. It’s a fun play with words, it’s about how you can make your own life in different ways. It’s very intriguing for journalists here. And the same thing with Sugar Deluxe, many many articles were written about the song because people feel like Iman picks things from a new angle and shows new ways of looking at things – from another point of view – instead of singing about love and baby baby. She’s something to say, she’s saying it with humour. So we’re very happy that it caused attention because it can be inspiring to young girls but also we hope to Africans, to empower people to say what they want to say, to do it with humour and happiness still with a laugh, not being too serious. But it’s a good song. Also the video on YouTube, Iman wanted to do it in her own way and with a little bit of humour. She did it herself and produce it herself. You can find them on YouTube @ Iman Conta.
Basically, I’ll say Iman is something new that the music world is waiting for because the last decade or more it’s been too much monotone musically but also lyrics wise. Now it seems like there is a young lady who is landing on this stage and she is totally a new stuff. I will say very inspiring because she is not just singing baby baby. It makes me very happy because as you know reggae is very much revolting like that. It kind of gives the sight of how reggae wants you to pursue your vision. I see so many things in Iman that I really wish to hear a long time ago. That’s very exciting.
Thank you very much Demba and Zannah. Listeners, those were the voice of the parents of wonderful Iman Conta.
Interviewer: Mohamed Lamin Sillah