Did you know that popular Yoruba gospel singer, Monique Lawal, who is known for her hit songs "Power flow, New story and Atobiju (Oba gbogbo aye), has got two adorable kids, Jamal and Mofe.
Check out these beautiful photos of them below:
Meanwhile here are interesting excerpts from a recent online Interview that Monique had, enjoy!
Just a few would even know that your name is Temitope…
Oh yes. But Monique is actually my first name and that is the name so many people know me with.
Is there any reason you decided to become a gospel singer?
There is no particular reason except that I just wanted to use my talent for God. From the outset, I was brought up in a Christian home and I have always believed in the things of God. I just want to use my talent as a payback to God for all that He has done for me; He has been faithful in every area of my life.
Apart from music, do you do other things?
I was formerly a banker and from there, I worked with the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association. But I realised that family is more important to me and the work didn’t allow me to have time for my family and for things of God. Now, it is just music that I am into.
Would you agree that there was a time gospel music was just about church choruses and nothing more?
What we don’t know is that these choruses were at some point, what some artistes recorded as songs. The thing is that every gospel chorus would eventually turn out to become a chorus in church. It is just that these days, because of media and social media, we are now able to put a face to some of the songs we listen to. Now, we can say this song belongs to this or that artiste. It has greatly transformed the way people used to see gospel music.
Is it going to be gospel all through?
Nothing can make me change from gospel music. I have had my fair share of challenges in life and at every point, God has seen me through. I can’t trade that for anything. When I started my career, I wasn’t like this. I started as just a woman who was seeking the face of God. But I can tell you now that the grace of God has been sufficient. I don’t have to look for things before I get them.
Are you saying there isn’t any time you miss the bank, even in your sober moments?
I have never missed the industry. I dare anybody to serve God in spirit and in truth. What you will enjoy will be greater than anything you can imagine. I don’t have any regret leaving any corporate organisation and coming to work for God.
Seeing you at first glance, one may not likely see you as a gospel singer because of the way you dress…
First of all, no matter how I dress, I don’t expose my body. Exposing your body may mean another thing to people. But if you check all my pictures online, I am usually well covered. If I am not going to church, I don’t have any business covering my hair. I don’t think any normal Christian should tie scarf every day of her life. I don’t know if by some people’s definition, that is how to be a Christian. I like to make myself beautiful because my God is beautiful. I want people to see me and also want to serve God. I want them to look at me and know that it is better to serve God than mammon. Gone are the days when you keep your hair untidy and some people would just look at you and say, ‘yes, that is how they look’. Everything God has created is beautiful. We cannot turn the creativity of God into an ugly thing. I accept that I am beautiful and I have to maintain the beauty in me. I want to look good for God’s sake, for my husband and for my children. I want people to be proud of me as a Christian.
But are there times people tell you to your face that you don’t dress like a born-again Christian?
No. I have never experienced such. If you see me wearing pants, that is because it was convenient for me to wear such. I have never worn a see-through cloth with ordinary panties and bra and somebody would walk up to me to ask me what I am wearing. God will not even be happy with me wearing such. No matter what you do, you cannot satisfy every man. I don’t have to wait for anybody to come to my house to see that I am a child of God. From my looks, you should know that I am a child of God and I do His ways. But I am not a fanatic. Some people might think that as a Christian, you should tie your hair every day of the week. I don’t see how that will work if you are a banker and you will now have to wear your church hat to work. I don’t wear blue or red hair, I don’t dress like a pop star, so nobody will come to me and ask me if I am sure I am a Christian.
Is it that you don’t wear revealing clothes because you are a gospel singer?
I think it is an eyesore to wear revealing clothes when I am not a mad person. Why would I just wear clothes that would show my undergarments and be walking on the streets when I am not mad? It doesn’t have anything to do with the fact that I am a Christian. I know people should do whatever they like but in that process, also consider that there is somebody watching them. Oh yes He created us naked and we would go back naked. But He didn’t say that we should be walking about naked.
Were you a tomboy?
I have seven elder brothers. I am 35 years now and that means they are men now. But growing up, I did what they did. I played football with them. I used to have more trousers than skirts. In fact, I was a typical tomboy.
How long do you carry your hairdo?
Because I was a tomboy, from childhood, I wasn’t so used to making my hair. It was even during my university days that I realised I was a lady and as such; I needed to look like one. So I started making my hair. But after a week, I would seriously want to remove the hair. Now, I do more of wigs. Anytime I am not in the country, I shop for more wigs than any other thing. Even my husband buys wigs for me. If you catch me at home, trust me, you would see me in my natural hair. But when I am going out, I wear wigs. If I am carrying braids, I might endure and wear the braids for three weeks.
Are you more of a dress person now or you still wear more of trousers?
I still wear more of trousers especially when I have to be casual. But when I am going to church, I wear dresses. In fact, for church, I wear flowing gown. I don’t wear skirts. Because I played football a lot when I was growing up, I think I developed bow legs. So I don’t wear skirt except if the skirt is very long. Long dresses suit me more than wearing short stuff. I am very small in stature so when I am going out, I like to dress like a woman that I am.
Were there times you wished you were bigger than your stature?
I have wished that so many times. My daughter is almost as tall as I am. People still think she is my sister. In my family, we are all tall. I am the shortest. I wish I was just tall.
Do you love shoes?
I love shoes, especially high-heeled shoes. Even when I am pregnant, I still wear high-heeled shoes. I don’t like being fat, I would rather be slim as I am. But I would have wanted to be taller.
How long does it take you to dress up?
If it is to just wear my jeans and top and maybe add the time to make-up, it would just take me 30 minutes.
Do you engage make-up artistes?
I don’t usually attend so many red carpet events. However, because I know if I get to the altar and start singing, I would begin to sweat and then all the make-up will run and you would not even like the picture that would come out. And because of that, I don’t use professional make-up artistes. I just use my powder, touch my brows and maybe use a lip gloss or lipstick. I usually do light make-up. But if I have a video shoot, I get the services of a make-up artiste because I know the picture would go viral and people would want to see me looking very good.
What does your husband like you to wear?
He likes me the way I am. Whatever I wear, he tells me ‘Baby, I love this’. He doesn’t mind if it is short or long as far as I am not exposing my body. I can never expose my body. If I do, then it is a mistake. There was a time I bought one chiffon gown. Gone are the days when ladies wear underskirt; you either wear slip and tights now instead of underskirt. So I wore the tight under the chiffon dress. I walked past a glass door and I noticed that the dress was transparent. It wasn’t as if anybody could see my body but I could see the shadows of my legs and I was uncomfortable. I said to myself that I should have worn a very long slip. I just quickly entered a boutique and I bought a slip and wore underneath. I am so careful of the material I buy.
Must your tops be turtleneck and long sleeve?
No! It is not ideal in a country like Nigeria where there is so much heat.