Tolani is the Lagos-born and London-raised singer who's found a sweet spot making effortless and infinitely breezy Afropop despite the restrictions of a song's subject matter. Her biggest single so far, 2019's Reekado Banks-featuring "BA MI LO," tackles the uncertainty of unrequited love with such a laidback air it sounds less a worried lament and more a confident prayer into existence. Likewise, Tolani's latest single, "Badman," about the toxic cycle one can find themselves in when it comes to dating, well, bad men, is fluttering Afropop that one can imagine blasting on a perfect summer day at the beach. Surely there's something to be said about catching more flies with honey.
Here, NYLON premieres the track's conceptual video, which finds the young artist entering and exiting a series of doors and relationships, only to be locked into another situation with a disrespectful man.
"'Badman' is a song exploring the habit of getting caught up with the ‘bad boys’ so to speak... being drawn to that high," Tolani writes via email. "I feel like there’s this subliminal message that love isn’t love unless it’s turbulent in some way… and so you get caught up in a cycle of looking for the wrong things in potential lovers. The video tells the story of that cycle, it’s one-take style and shows me walking into and out of bad relationships and still giving the next bad guy the benefit of the doubt.”