"It felt like progress was happening, but also being Black in America, we know that the appearance of progress doesn't mean that progress is actually happening," she recalls of the conversation. "There is no logical person that actually thinks this is an argument of right and wrong. Anyone who is actually using their brains can say, 'Yes, Black lives do matter, and Black lives have been devalued in America.'"
Reflecting on the last few months of protesting and calling for justice, Oladokun says that this reckoning still isn't enough; as she points out, Breonna Taylor's killers still have not been arrested since her death in March. "She was shot almost in her sleep. So if we are found threatening at literally our most non-threatening state, we cannot be the problem," she says. "There is a sorrow that this country has given me as a Black woman that I will live with for the rest of my life, but my responsibility and my gift on this earth is to share my experience."
Oladokun plans to continue that experience — just two weeks after releasing the first volume of her project, the singer says that she's already reached the halfway production mark for the second volume, which she hopes to release in the coming months. Production has been the latest part of Oladokun's musical education — after spending time in recording sessions where she felt cut out of the musical process, the star has spent the last year learning and honing her production skills. On her next album, she hopes to have production credits on most of the songs therein.
"In the same way that my writing is really vulnerable, I think the way that I use instrumentation is just as powerful," she says. "So I want to have as much of a say as I can."
Ultimately, Oladokun says that her goal is to create a space in her music where her fans can come and unpack their own baggage without judgement. She hopes that by doing that herself, she's encouraging others to follow suit.
"I want it to feel like a kind of church, in the sense that literally everybody is welcome, and everybody gets to cry here, everybody gets to laugh here, everybody gets to process trauma and build something new," she says fondly. "I want it to feel like everybody has a seat at the table."