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MHD Posted by on Sep 12, 2017 in Music, Uncategorized

My husband was recently listening to music that caught my ear. It was catchy and happy—just what I needed to listen to at the moment. The artist, MHD, has become somewhat of a star in France since the release of his debut album last year. He’s played at Les Victoires de la Musique, the French equivalent of the Grammys, and been a fixture of sorts on French TV. Perhaps you’ve already heard of him!

MHD’s Self-Titled Album

MHD is the stage name of Mohamed Sylla. He was born in the 19th arrondissement of Paris in 1994 to Senegalese and Guinean parents. He writes and performs his own music, which draws inspiration from both African music and trap music, a genre that developed from hip hop in the Southern United States.

MHD is only twenty-three years old, but he has been praised by the likes of Madonna and Drake and has gained quite an international following. His eponymous debut album became”double platine,” or double platinum, during its first year of sales. There are a great many good songs on the album, although my favorite one (the one I caught my husband listening to) is “A Kele N’ta.”

According to this article, “A kele n’ta” means “ne choisis qu’elle.” In English, this would mean something like “Only choose her.” In interviews, MHD stated that he wrote it to recently married friends, trying to convince them to never cheat on their spouse. He states, “”Je fais tout pour qu’il ne choisisse qu’elle, qu’il n’aille pas voir ailleurs. Je m’adresse à n’importe lequel de mes potes qui se mariera dans le futur mais j’ai écrit en pensant à un mariage récent, plus précisément celui d’un grand de mon quartier.” (I do everything so that he would only choose her, that he wouldn’t look elsewhere. I’m speaking to each and everyone of my friends who will marry in the future but I wrote it thinking about a recent marriage, and more specifically one of an older guy in my neighborhood.)

Here are the lyrics of “A Kele N’Ta” here:

C’est plus qu’un pote c’est devenu un frère
Quand j’marche avec lui, plus rien n’m’effraie
On a vécu des choses qu’on peut pas citer
Entre nous pas d’langue de bois, pas d’secret
On n’a pas changé les années sont passées
Certains nous ont lâchés
On s’est promis d’être soudés jusqu’au bout
Tu l’as choisie, vous deux c’est l’amour fou
Tu connais sa famille, elle connait la tienne
Dans les moments durs, elle partage ta peine
N’aie pas d’inquiétude t’es sa première et dernière
Accroche-toi le bonheur t’appelle

Eh, ce soir c’est ton jour
L’ambiance peut démarrer, on est tous dans la foule
Tout le monde est présent
Personne ne veut rater ça, des petits aux grands
La famille au complet
J’vois l’bonheur dans vos yeux, nul ne pourra l’retirer
Ce moment restera gravé dans ma tête
Des souvenirs qu’on pourra se partager

Eh eh, mon ami a nkele n’ta

Eh eh, mon ami a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, mon ami a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, mon ami a nkele n’ta, a nkele n’ta

Vous passez des rires aux larmes
La première naissance, la vie d’famille se construit
Elle t’a donné sa confiance forcément y’a des hauts et des bas
C’est qu’une étape à franchir, cousine, tu sais
N’écoute pas les gens
Tous les hommes sont pas pareils, c’est qu’une légende
Si tu l’aimes, c’est réciproque
J’le connais par coeur, c’est quand même mon pote
J’vois son sourire quand il passe la bague au doigt
Ça m’fait plaisir, ça m’fait rêver
Tout l’quartier s’est déplacé pour toi
Ton histoire ne fait que commencer

Eh, ce soir c’est ton jour
L’ambiance peut démarrer, on est tous dans la foule
Tout le monde est présent
Personne ne veut rater ça, des petits aux grands
La famille au complet
J’vois l’bonheur dans vos yeux, nul ne pourra l’retirer
Ce moment restera gravé dans ma tête
Des souvenirs qu’on pourra se partager

Eh eh, mon ami a nkele n’ta

Eh eh, mon ami a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, mon ami a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, mon ami a nkele n’ta, a nkele n’ta

And the English translation:

He’s more than just a friend, he became a brother
When I walk with him, nothing scares me anymore
We’ve been through things that I can’t mention
Between us, there’s no doublespeak, no secrets
We haven’t change, the years passed by
Some of them ditched us
We promised each other to remain united until the end
You chose it, the two of you, it’s foolish love
You know her family, she knows yours
In the hard times, she shares your pain
Don’t worry, you’re her first and her last
Hang on, pleasure is calling you

Eh, tonight is your day
The party can start, everyone’s in the crowd
Everyone is present
Nobody wants to miss this, from the little kids to the older ones
The complete family
I can see pleasure in your eyes, no one will be able to remove it
This moment will remain carved in my head
Memories that we’ll be able to share

Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta, a nkele n’ta

You guys go from tears to laughter
The first birth, the family life is taking shape
She gave you her trust, so inevitably there’s ups and downs
It’s just a step to be taken, cousin, you already know
Don’t listen to people
All men are not the same, that’s just a legend
If you love him, it’s mutual
I know him by heart, he’s my friend after all
I see him smile while slipping the rings on your finger
It makes me happy, it makes me dream
The whole projects made the trip for you
Your story is only now starting

Eh, tonight is your day
The party can start, everyone’s in the crowd
Everyone is present
Nobody wants to miss this, from the little kids to the older ones
The complete family
I can see pleasure in your eyes, no one will be able to remove it
This moment will remain carved in my head
Memories that we’ll be able to share

Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta, a nkele n’ta

You chose her
She chose you, destiny didn’t make any mistake
A step was taken
The best way to settle down is to unit
Now you’re in the big leagues
Your parents will be so proud when they will see theirs grand children
My friend, we’re proud of you
She’s your girl, a nkele n’ta

Eh, tonight is your day
The party can start, everyone’s in the crowd
Everyone is present
Nobody wants to miss this, from the little kids to the older ones
The complete family
I can see pleasure in your eyes, no one will be able to remove it
This moment will remain carved in my head
Memories that we’ll be able to share


Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta, a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta
Eh eh, my friend a nkele n’ta, a nkele n’ta

You can watch the music video for “A Kele N’Ta” here:

 

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About the Author:Elizabeth Schmermund

Bonjour tout le monde! I'm a freelance writer, doctoral student, mom, and Francophile. I'm excited to share some of my experiences living in France, as well as the cultural nuances that I've learned being married to a Frenchman, with all of you. To find out more about me, feel free to check out my website at http://www.imaginistwriter.com. A la prochaine!


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