We were ushered into the New Year with the now rested beef of Don Jazzy and Olamide. Immediately after that, Cynthia Morgan brought up her issues with Davido. We were still grappling with that when Burna Boy and his record label were accused by an upcoming act of embezzlement and ‘swagger jacking’, a charge that Burna Boy has not responded to as at the time of writing this article.
What does this portend for Nigerian music in 2016? Does it mean our musicians will focus more on their ‘street credibility’ instead of putting out good songs? Or is this the year where diss songs shall come aplenty? Looking at it from another perspective, all these events show that our music industry is slowly coming of age. Musicians now know that they are no more sacred cows in the industry. You misbehave and you will be called out immediately. You put out a mediocre song; you and your music will be labelled mediocre. You steal someone else’s song idea, beat or video; you will be punished for it. The definition of an A-List artiste is slowly changing. The amount of upcoming acts with better sounds and all round packaging is partly responsible for this.
Davido, Wizkid, Vector and Kiss Daniel have confirmed plans to release albums in 2016. The names mentioned above are amongst the top acts we have presently in Nigeria. And judging from the singles they have put out, we should be in for a treat music wise. I just hope we haven’t already seen the best of what they have to offer.
Based on the fact that our music offers some sort of instant gratification, the movie industry is often overlooked.
This should not be the case. Nollywood has grown amazingly. We now have higher quality films, better actors, sound technical crews and an all-round efficiency that is simply a pleasure to watch.
Knowing that Nigerians are amongst the most judgemental and opinionated people in the world, Nollywood practitioners are constantly putting in more efforts to make sure they deliver the best films to the public. But one disturbing feature is the fact that some filmmakers have to copy or remake Hollywood movies. Are they saying that there are no Nigerian stories worth telling? What happened to the hundreds of books we grew up reading? Wouldn’t it be nice to see a film adaptation of Eze Goes To School or The Bottled Leopard? Or have Odunlade Adekola star in a remake of D.O Fagunwa’s Ogboju Ode Ninu Igbo Irunmole. Whatever the problem is with Nollywood, the lack of stories is not it.
2015 also saw an emergence of a number of well put together theatre shows. Some of them were even musicals. Musicals! To say they were impressive is an understatement. Nigerians can’t wait to see what the Nigerian theatre has to offer in 2016.
No matter the number of predictions one makes about our entertainment industry, the fact remains that without support, our entertainment will remain stagnant. So, if it’s via criticisms, commendations or something else, just show your support.