SUN NO DEY SLEEP 

Words and Music composed, written and arranged by Olusegun Akinlolu. No part of these lyrics should be shared in any form or any public space without giving credit to the writer. All rights reserved. © & ℗ 2011 EniObanke


 

1. MONKEY WEAR SHOE 
Ìbàsẹ̀jẹ́ awo sọ̀lúdìgbẹ́ o 
Làntìlanti pàtàn lábẹ́ ewé 
Ìlú òkè ni mo lọ ó ti gbé’lé yẹn tà 
Ọmọ àpà ni wọ́n npe ‘rú rẹ o. 
Ìbàsẹ̀jẹ́ fọ̀tẹ̀sọlá o 
Ọ̀rọ̀ rẹ ni mo rò d’ọ́dọ̀ àgbà 
Iye sunkún, bàbá f’ọwọ́ lẹ́rán o 
Wọ́n l’ọ́mọ ènìyàn wọn ò ṣe gb’ára lé o. 
Monkey dey wear shoe, e think say e be fine guy 

(Bespoiler, keeper of destructive company 

Horrendous liar, teller of idle tales 

In my brief absence, he sold the house 

Shameless Prodigal is what you are. 

Bespoiler, master of chicanery 

I exposed your malfeasance to the elders 

Mother wailed and Father pondered 

And then they said no being is worthy of trust. 

Monkey dey wear shoe, e think say e be fine guy) 

Alábòsí ọ̀rẹ́ túlétúlé, wòòkòwooko ẹ ò r’ójú olè 
Ìwà ibi ni ò jẹ́ o r’álájọgbé 
Gbogbo nkan ò mà lè jẹ́ tìrẹ o. 
Ìbùsọ̀ l’ẹnu ká ti jẹun k’á yó 
Ọ̀rọ̀ ọ̀fun lo má nf’orí rẹ rò 
Àgbà ọmọ a ṣe bíi màjèsín 
Ìgb̀a kan ò lọ bí òréré o 
Ọ̀sán bá ọ wí, o lóò ní gbọ́ 
Alẹ́ bá ọ sọ́, o l’ẹ́nu rẹ̀ nrùn 
Ẹni ṣ’ọ̀lẹ, olè ní ó jà gbẹ̀hìn 
Ha, nbá mọ̀ ní kẹ́hìn aṣebi o 

(Evil schemer, promoter of chaos 

Hardened thief with unfeeling eyes 

Your devious ways repel everyone 

No matter how you try, 

All the resources can't be yours alone. 

The mouth is supreme, to eat and be full 

Satisfying the tummy, your eternal goal 

Overgrown child behaving like a toddler 

Remember, no season is forever. 

Afternoon cautioned you, Evening counselled you, 

Stubbornly, you turned deaf ears 

The indolent will take to a life of crime 

And regret is where it all ends) 

Ènìyàn méjì ìí pàdánù irọ́ 
B’ẹ́ni a pá fún ò mọ̀, ẹni npurọ́ mọ’ra rẹ̀ o 
Ṣèb’ójú àwo l’àwo mi fi ngb’ọbẹ̀ o 
Ngò í ṣ’ọ̀dẹ̀, mo kàn dákẹ́ ni o 
Ènìyàn o s’áwọn ná k’ẹ́ṣin l’ọ́ró 
Jẹ́jẹ́ mi ni mo má nlò’gbà ìwà 
Ẹni tọ́ mi, ṣe nìyẹn ntú ‘lé agbọ́n o 
Bí ò ṣọ́’ra yíó mal j’íjó ẹ̀tẹ́ o 
Ilẹ̀ bá ọ sọ́, o lóò ní gbọ́ 
Òkè bá ọ wí, o l’ẹ́nu rẹ̀ nrùn 
Ẹní ṣ’ọ̀lẹ, olè ni ó jà gbẹ̀hìn 
Ò bá tẹ’pá mọ́’ṣe, ọ̀la nbọ̀ wá da o 

(Both parties cannot be oblivious to a lie 

The liar surely knows, if not the recipient 

Don’t take my silence for stupidity. 

I prefer to meet my challenges face on 

Humans taught the horse to be bitter and vengeful 

I go by quietly but if anyone looks for my trouble 

Like one disturbing a hornet’s nest 

If he is not careful, he will do a dance of disgrace. 

Earth spoke to you, you wouldn’t listen 

Sky warned you, you tuurned a deaf ear 

Indolence leads to a life of crime 

Focus hard on your work, a better day is coming) 

2. KO DA NKAN 
Má yọ s’ílé mi mọ́ 
Kìí ṣe kúrò l’áyé ọ̀rẹ́ mi 
Ṣebí ‘lé ayé ọ̀hún ò da nkan 
Má rìn lọ́ọ̀dẹ̀ mi kìí ṣe jáde l’áyé kóo mọ gbọ́ o 
Àní ‘lé ayé ọ̀hún ò da nkan 

(Asking me never to come near your house again 

Is not a dismisal from life, my friend 

This life is worth little anyway 

Barring me from your space 

Is not expulsion from the world, you understand? 

This life is worth little anyway) 

Bàbá olówó àná, onílé gogoro nkọ́, àwọn dà? 
A wá wọn títí, a ò mà rí wọn mọ́ 
Ìyá wọ̀kílùúmọ̀ akọ́mọlẹ́rú, àwọn náà nkọ́? 
Ilẹ̀ mù wọ́n, a ò mà gbọ́ wọn mọ́ 

(Yesterday’s money man, who built the mighty mansion 

He’s nowhere to be found today 

And the powerful woman who treated people like slaves 

The Earth ate her too, now she is silent) 

Bọ̀bọ́ olókìkí tí gbogbo ayé nwá rìrì fún 
Wọ́n bá ‘lẹ̀ lọ, a ò mà gbọ́ wọn mọ́ 
Arẹwà kò-sí-rú-mi, atẹlẹ̀bíẹyẹ 
Wọ́n lò’gbà, ìgbà wá lò wọ́n, a ò mà gbọ́ wọn mọ 

(The famous guy who had the world at his feet 

He has disappeared too, no longer to be heard 

Oh, and the vain beauty strutting about like a bird 

She had her time, time used her and now she’s gone) 

Ẹni ayé nfẹ́, ẹni ayé nfẹ́ 
Ó lè d’ọ̀tá ìlú lọ́la, ẹni ayé nfẹ́ 
Ẹni ò r’ọ́wọ́ mú, ẹni ò r’ọ́wọ́ mú 
Ó lè d’ọlọ́rọ̀ l’ọ́la ẹni ò r’ọ́wọ́ mú 
Ẹni ayé npọ́nlé, ẹni ayé npọ́nlé 
Wọ́n le tu’tọ́ ẹ̀tẹ́ si, b’ọ́rọ̀ ò bá gún mọ́ 

(The one beloved today by the world 

May turn an enemy of the people tomorrow 

And the desperately poor, seemingly hopeless 

May tomorrow, become well-to-do 

The one celebrated today by the world 

They spit on tomorrow if things go awry) 

3. SOMEONE LIKE BIKO 
Weariness in my soul, pain in my heart 
See you there little child, fear in your eyes 
The road ahead will be rough, we seek the land of hope 
No vision, no clear direction 
Only the fittest of the fittest shall survive and that’s why 
I’m crying for the future 
I worry about the future 
I’m working for the future, yeah 
Will we ever truly be happy 
Will we ever know the good life 
Will there ever be justice and equality for all? 
So give me a man like Malcolm in this time 
Someone like Sankara with the love of his people 
Show me a man like Neto in this time 
Someone like Biko 

Then we were slaves taken away from here 
Now we’re still slaves right on our own land 
Nothing is settled my brother, the battle rages on 
We’re still the pawn in the game 
And half the story is never told and that’s why 
I’m fighting for the future 
I’m working for future 
I’m looking to the future, yeah 
Will we ever really be free 
Will ever stand up and fight 
Will we ever speak together in one voice? 
So give me a man like Cabral in this time 
Someone like Lumumba, with the passion of youth 
We need men like Garvey in this time 
Someone like Biko 

So give me a man like Shaka in this time 
Someone like Nkrumah, with the love of his people 
Show me a man like Boro in this time 
Someone like Biko 

Weariness in my soul, pain in my heart 
Close your eyes and sleep child, 
Everything is going to be alright 

4. ATUNDA ERE 
Wọ́n l’épè ní p’òṣìkà, ọ̀dàlẹ̀ ní p’ọ̀rẹ́ o 
Àrígiṣẹ́gi o, ṣèb’óun l’ẹrù ó pa 
Èpè ní p’òṣìkà, ọ̀dàlẹ̀ ní p’ọ̀rẹ́ o 
Iṣeẹ́ ọwọ́ ẹni, la ó fi dá ni l’áre 

(Curses will cause the demise of the wicked 

Betrayal wrecks friendship 

He who is out for the destruction of others 

Will fall under his own burden 

By the works of our hands we shall be vindicated) 

A dúró a mí s’ọ̀rọ̀, àwọn kan p’áwọn l’àgbà oyè 
Àwa ò b’ẹ́nìkan du’pò, jẹ́jẹ́ la nmí 
Ẹni wá wa dé’lé, t’ayọ̀ t’ẹ̀rín la ó pàdé rẹ̀ 
Pẹ̀lú ijó onísùúrù l’ẹ́sẹ̀ o 
Ijó ti yá o, orin rèé o 
Àwọn ẹgbẹ́ wa l’ó mà mí s’àtúndá eré 
Ijó ti yá o, orin rèé o 
Àrà tó bá wùn ẹ́ ni o jù s’ílẹ̀ o 

(We stand there talking and some folks start mouthing off 
We are not competing with anyone, just doing our own thing 
If you come over to our place, 

We shall welcome you with joy and an easy shuffle. 
It’s dancing time and here’s your song 
Our band makes the music of rebirth 

And you can move as you like on the floor) 

Ẹni l’ówó l’ọ́wọ́, tí nṣe bí aláìní o 
Ọ̀rọ̀ ayé ò tó nkan o ká máa rántí 
Ẹni bá ṣ’iṣẹ́ kára ṣe b’ó ye kó l’áṣìkò ìgbádùn 
Olólùfẹ́ máa gbẹ́’sẹ̀ bọ̀ níkànkan 

(Deep pockets pretending to be a pauper 

Just remember that life is temporary 

Anyone who works hard should find time for fun 

Come beloved, come forth gently. 

It’s dancing time and here’s your song 
Our band makes the music of rebirth 

And you can move as you like on the floor) 

Ẹ gbé wa d’órí ogún, ẹ gbé wa dé ‘bi ọgbọ̀n 
Àní ẹ f’ọ̀nà hàn wá ò k’álẹ́ tó lẹ́ 
Ẹ gbé wa dé ‘bi tó ga 
Ẹ gbé wa dé ‘bi tó jìn 
Ẹ máa tọ́ wa o, k’áyé ó yẹ wá 
Ẹ gbé wa d’órí ogójì 
Ẹ gbé wa kọjá ẹgbẹ̀rún 
Ayọ̀ pẹ̀lú àlááfià, orí ire 

Ẹ gbé wa dé ‘bi ọgọ́rù́n, ẹ gbé wa kọjá ẹgbẹ̀ta 
Ẹ máa tọ́ wa o, ká má ṣì’nà 

(Take us to high places 
Take us higher and further still 

Guide us that we may have a good life 

Lead us so we may not go wrong 

And joy, health and good fortune shall be ours) 

5. KING OF PROCRASTINATION 
All of my life I don dey try o 
To be the best I can be 
To be somebody’s hero 
But I am the king of procrastination 
And now that you’ve come my way I really see o 
Your beauty glows in the dark 
My former life was a deep hole 
You are the queen of illumination 
So here I stand, wash me woman 
Make me clean, put a new song in my mouth 
Don’t give up on me now 

Time has passed again, I’m in the shadows 
The darkness comes anew 
My lonely feet grow heavy 
These are the days of tribulation 
But then, I hear your voice calling out 
You beat a path through the jungle 
You’ve got a smile on your face 
You’re reaching out in invitation 
But girl, I’m afraid my past will never let me be 
They say old habits die hard 
Don’t give up on me now 

Today we meet as planned at the crossroads 
I’ve got my offering ready 
I go down on my knees o 
And plead with the Lord of Confusion 
But you, you have eyes only for me o 
Your plate is full of riches 
You treat me like a hero 
You feed me love and devotion 
Yes queen, I am ready 
Hold me woman, make me strong 
We’ll be together through the storm 
Don’t give up on me now 

6. TERAMỌ 
Arákùnrin tẹ’ra mọ, tẹ’ra mọ, 
Tẹ’ra mọ ’ṣẹ́, ìbẹ̀rẹ̀ ìí ṣ’oníṣẹ́ 
Olólùfẹ́ tẹ’jú mọ, tẹ’jú mọ, 
Tẹ’pá mọ́ ‘ṣẹ́, ọ̀la nbọ̀ wá da 
Arábìnrin tẹ’ra mọ, tẹ’ra mọ, 
Tẹ’ra mọ ’ṣẹ́, ìbẹ̀rẹ̀ ìí ṣ’oníṣẹ́ 
Olólùfẹ́ tẹ’jú mọ, tẹ’jú mọ, 
Tẹ’pá mọ́ ‘ṣẹ́, ọ̀la nbọ̀ wá da 

(Brother, keep at it, keep going until the very end 

Beloved, keep your eyes on the goal 

Keep working hard, success comes soon 

Sister, keep at it, keep going until the very end 

Beloved, keep your eyes on the goal 

Keep working hard, success comes soon) 

Àsìkò layé, bí ò bá ì yí kan ni, 
Á dà bí ẹni’pe ènìyàn ò mọ̀ọ́ ṣe rárá 
Ṣùgbọ́n tí ‘gbà bá tó, tí ‘ràwọ̀ ẹ̀dá ntàn 
Kò s’ẹ́ni tó le dí ni l’ọ́nà 

(Everything in life has its time 

Until it’s your turn, one seems like a failure 

But when the time arrives for your star to shine 

No one can stand in your way)
 

Fì ‘dẹ̀ra fún wa, ọba fì ‘bùkún fún wa 
Wá fi‘ṣẹ́ yìn wá o, ká má d’èr̀o ẹ̀yìn l’áyé o 
Fì ‘dẹ̀ra fún wa, ọba fì ‘bùkún fún wa 
K’ọ́jọ́ ayé wa kó gùn k’ólóyin 
Fì ‘dẹ̀ra fún wa, ọba fì ‘bùkún fún wa 
Ká má ṣ’iṣẹ́ àṣedànù, ká má d’èrò ẹ̀yìn l’áyé o 
Fì ‘dẹ̀ra fún wa, ọba fì ‘bùkún fún wa 
K’ọ́jọ́ ayé wa kó dùn kan lẹ̀ 

(Grant us well-being and plenty 

May our work speak for us and elevate us 

May our days be long and sweet 

May we not labour in vain and become laggards 

May our lives be blessed until the very end) 

Ìgbà mà l’ọlá, yíyí níí yí kan ni 
Ẹni ò ní sùúrù ní t’ojú bọ ‘lé kiri 
F’òwúrọ̀ ṣiṣẹ́, ko f’òtítọ́ si o 
Ṣèbí sùúrù ló jù, ọba ìwà
 
(Wealth comes in due season, when it is your turn 

The impatient run helter-skelter, ahead of themselves 

Do honest labour in your youth 

Patience is the key, Lord of Character) 

7. LOCUST SEASON 
You know that many of us, we miss those days of harmony 
And we’ll like to see them again 
You know that many of us, we miss those days of innocence 
And we’ll like to see them again 

Tell me where are you now Victor Banjo? 
We look to the sky and the stars are gone 
Only vultures feeding off the backs of the poor, 

The weak and the people’s frustration 
Tell me, where have you gone Kaduna Nzeogwu? 
The sun doesn’t shine in the east anymore 
And the west no longer sees any ray of hope 
And in the north, in the south, it’s locust season 

So tell me, where will it berth this floundering ship? 
The storm is gathering and the moment comes 
When denial will no longer be enough 
And the horrors of the past will be exposed 
So tell me how will you gag millions of voices? 
The season of reckoning is drawing near 
When the people come together to make a new pact 
On how to live together or move apart 

E don tey wey we dey talk am 
No be today o, no be today 

We seek justice and liberty 
Truth and honour in high places 
We seek freedom and prosperity for all 
We seek an end to poverty in this land 

8. AGO ONILE 
Àgò onílé a mà dé àwa ni 
Ẹ̀yin wo nùu? 

Àgò onílé a mà dé àwa ni 
Ẹ káàbọ̀ o! 

Àgò onílé a mà dé àwa ni 
A ti nretí yín! 

Àgò onílé a mà dé àwa ni 
Ẹ má wo ’lẹ̀ o! 

(Knock, knock, residents, we are here 

Who are you? 

Knock, knock, residents, we are here 

You’re welcome! 

Knock, knock, residents, we are here 

We’ve been expecting you! 

Knock, knock, residents, we are here 

Come in, tread carefully!) 

A dé, mo seb’á̀wa náà ni ẸniỌ́bánkẹ́ gangan, a tún dé 
A mà dé o, kò s’éwu l’ẹ́gbẹ̀rún ẹ̀kọ, ẹ máa bá wa kálọ, a tún dé 
Láti ‘lé ọgbọ́n - 
A dé, seb’á̀wa náà ni, ọmọ ọ̀dọ̀ àgbàgbà, a tún dé 
Ẹni bá ṣe ’re - 
Ire ni ó ma rí, ẹni bá sì ṣè ’kà, àbámọ̀ ni ó jẹ l’óde ayé 
Ẹ f’ìwà ṣ’ọlá - 
Ẹ f’ọlá m’ẹbí, f’owó m’aráàdúgbò, ẹnìkan ò m’ẹ̀hìn ọ̀la, ẹ yé 
Tẹ̀ẹ́ jẹ́jẹ́ - 
Yíyí l’ayé nyí, ẹní kàn l’ọ́tẹ̀ yìí, ẹ̀ bá jẹ́ a rọra ṣ’ayé 
F’òtítọ́ ṣ’ọ̀rẹ́ - 
K’áyé ó le r’ójú, ẹ jẹ́ á tún ‘lẹ̀ yìí ṣe, k’ára ó rọ gbogbo wa, ẹ yé!
 
(We are here, yes, the real EniObanke 

We who learned at the feet of the elders 

We have come from the place of wisdom 
Do come along with us, it’s totally safe. 
The malevolent harvest evil 
Those who sow seeds of goodness shall reap joy 
Spread wealth, tread gently on your way 
Befriend Truth, make this land a better place 
That we may all have peace and comfort) 

9. OHUN MẸRIN 
Ará, mo gbọ́’rọ̀ kan o l’ẹ́nu iye mi àgbà 
Wọ́n l’afẹ́nifẹ́re o, wọn ò ṣ’ọ̀pọ̀ l’áyé 
Àgbájọ’wọ́ ìyẹn ṣ’óun làá fi sọ̀ ’yà 
Ká-rìn-ká-pọ̀ ní ’ṣọ̀kan 
Àní mo gbó’un tó dùn l’ẹ́nu iye mi àgbà 
Wọ́n l’ẹ́ni tí ó j’oyin àpáta kìí w’ẹnu àáké 
Kì mà í ṣ’ojú bọ̀rọ̀ làá gb’ọmọ ẹ̀kùrọ́ 
Ọ̀rẹ́ mi gbé’ra nde 

(Friends, I heard something from my grandmother 

She said those who seek the growth of society are few 

If we desire positive change, 

We must walk and work together in unity. 

I heard this also from my grandmother 

He who seeks honey from a rock won’t fret over his axe 

The task wont be easy; get up my friend) 

You stand for your right, I stand for mine 
Everyone must play his part 
We ask for the truth, demand for justice 
Only love will set us free 

Mo mà gbó’un tó dùn l’ẹ́nu iye mi àgbà 
Wọ́n l’ohun mẹ́rin ní nbẹ o tí ò j’áyé ó gún 
Àìṣòtítọ́ - ó nbẹ ní’bẹ̀ 
Àìnítẹ̀lọ́rùn - ó nbẹ ní’bẹ̀ 
Ìmọtẹni nìkan - ó nbẹ ní’bẹ̀ 
Ọ̀tẹ̀ – ìyẹn nbẹ ní’bẹ̀! 

(I heard something sweet from my grandmother 

She said four things are the bane of society: 
Deceit - that’s one 

Selfishness - that’s another 

Greed - that one too 

Skulduggery - that’s there as well) 

Ará, mo gbọ́’rọ̀ kan o l’ẹ́nu bàbá onírùngbọ̀n 
Wọ́n ní ìmọ̀ ìwé yẹn o, ó ṣe pàtàkì, ó jọjú 
Sùgbọ́n ọgbọ́n àwọn àgbà, ṣé yẹn n’ìṣẹ̀nbáyé 
Kò ṣe é f’ọwọ́ rọ́ s’ẹ́hìn láíláí 
Àní mo gbó’un tó dùn l’ẹ́nu Àṣàbí ọlọ́mọwẹ́wẹ́ 
Wọ́n ní abániṣé yẹn o, wọn ò pọ̀ bí abánilò’gbà 
Akínkanjú ẹ rọra, ọgbọ́n l’ọ̀rọ̀ yìí ó gbà 
Ọjọ́ òmìnira nbọ̀ kánkán 

(Friends, I heard something from the aged, bearded one 

He said modern knowledge is important 

But we must also embrace ancient traditional wisdom. 

I heard something sweet from Asabi, blessed matron 

She said the builders are never as numerous as the parasites 

Tread with care brave ones, we must employ wisdom 

The dawn of freedom is nigh) 

10. EYES ALWAYS OPEN 
Eyes always open 
Sun no dey sleep, sun no dey sleep 
Ever shining bright 
Ever burning bright

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