The song “Je Utanipenda” by Tanzanian music legends Mike Tee, Mad Ice, and Sugu is a powerful ballad about the vulnerability of love. The song’s protagonist, a successful musician, wonders if his friends and lover will still love him if he loses his fame and fortune.
The song begins with the protagonist expressing his doubts about the people in his life. He wonders if they are only there for him because of his success. He sings, “Bado nina mashaka kila kunapokucha, Hawa nilionao ipo siku wataniacha.” (I still have doubts every morning. These people will leave me one day.)
The protagonist then goes on to talk about his relationship with his lover. He sings, “Kimapenzi mimi nawe tulikuaga kwenye hali duni, Ila tulifuata mila zote kitamaduni.” (In love, we were together in poverty, but we followed all the traditional customs.) He loves his lover, but he is still worried that she will leave him if he loses his wealth. He sings, “N’na wasiwasi kama utanitenga, Sabab sijui kwa nini ulinipenda.” (I’m worried that you’ll leave me, because I don’t know why you loved me.)
The song ends with the protagonist demanding answers from his lover. He sings, “Leooo leo leooo Nataka majibu kwakooo, na ukweli wakooo lady.” (Today, today, today I want answers from you, and your truth, lady.)
The song “Je Utanipenda” is a relatable ballad that explores the universal fear of being rejected. It is a reminder that love is a fragile thing that can be easily broken.
The song also raises important questions about the nature of love. Is love based on true affection, or is it simply a matter of convenience? Can love survive the test of time, or will it fade away when the good times are over?
The song “Je Utanipenda” is a thought-provoking and emotionally powerful ballad that will stay with you long after you hear it.