M.I Abaga was born Jude Abaga, October 4, 1981 in Jos, Plateau State. It was his mother who bought him basic music notations and a 7-key piano that sparked his interest in music. He would often listen to Lauryn Hill, Bob Marley, Sarah Maclachlan, Pable Neruda, Jay-Z and DMX during his youth. In as early as 1998, he was sampling DMX and Lauryn Hill. At Calvin College he regularly performed at the school’s hiphop shows and concerts. When he returned to Nigeria in 2003, he began his music career. He gained fame with his single “Safe”, which earned plenty of airtime by African radio and MTV vibe. It was during the excitement following the single that he released his first album, “Let’s Talk About It”.
The song monkey is a fun and upbeat song with a music video to match. It has very traditional African beats. At first listen, it sounds like feel good song meant to boost the spirit of the listener. MI Abaga introduces the song as a song for those who have others attempting to bring them down and “squash their party”. MI Abaga glides over the beat with impressive metaphors and delivery. He includes metaphoric lines such as “My foundation is not Mary Kay” and serious rhymes like,”I’ve been disrespected, but I kept calm and stepped on, spat on, neglected but I kept on”. There is a subtle hint in a few of his lyrics that clearly shows he’s spent some time in the states and is familiar with American culture.