Sunday, 27 January 2013


The sad thing about a lot of Nigerians is our inability to constructively analyze issues before making conclusions. Often times our conclusions get tinted with sentiments and high level of ignorance.

Last week, the gist was about NBC (Nigeria broadcast commission) banning certain Nigerian music videos. A lot of music fans of the affected artistes quickly went on the offensive, condemning NBC’s action while some other people supported the move. Those that supported NBC’s actions were mostly morality freaks, feminists groups and a host of washed up older artistes; well, some genuine ‘good people’ also featured.

Surprisingly, many of those for or against NBC’s actions were oblivious of the fact that if such a ban action actually took place, it only affects ‘free to air’ TV stations i.e. the NTA’s, STVs, AITs, LTVs and co. These TV stations even without the so-called NBC ban normally don’t broadcast most current Naija hit songs. A lot of Nigerians get their Naija hip-hop fix from satellite TV platforms like Sound city, Channel O, Nigezie, MTV base and sometimes Trace Urban, many more simply go to YouTube. These satellite TV stations are not obliged to enforce any such NTBB (Not to be broadcast) sanctions by NBC since their platforms are not ‘free to air’-they are all pay TV channels.

In a nutshell, the NBC hammer has very little potency; on the contrary it adds to the popularity of affected music videos, especially on YouTube -remember what NBC’s ban did for Femi Kuti’s 'bang bang bang'? I’m beginning to suspect that very soon some corky artiste managers may even start requesting that their videos be banned by NBC so as to increase its popularity on more relevant platforms.

My grudge with NBC is their inability to progressively tackle the abuse of ‘sexiness’ by a lot of Nigerian musicians, especially the less-talented ones. There’s a clear line between ‘sexy’ and ‘lewd’ but unfortunately most of our artistes don’t even know the difference. A song or music video can be sexy and yet maintain some form of decency. Sadly, what transpires nowadays is, a musician drops a lousy song and shoots a ridiculous video showing poorly paid vixens (local or foreign) shaking their ‘booty’. This development is not just repulsive but extremely annoying, especially when such explicit scenes have no connection with the song’s core message or lyrics-if any.

This may sound contradictory but I actually liked Timaya’s ‘bum bum’ video, hey, the song was about ‘bum bum’ so what else did you expect?

Psquare’s Alingo was awesome and the car scene with Peter and the Vixen was not entirely out of place-I’m making reference to NBC’s purported reasons for slamming the hammer on Alingo. Surprisingly,Dbanj’s Bachelor video was not on NBC’s list despite a particular scene were a female cast member nearly choked viewers with her half-naked behind very close to the TV screen.

The people at NBC-if they are serious about doing their job should wake up to their responsibilities and GUIDE Nigerian artistes on how best to broadcast their works. NBC should let these artistes know that they should always have at least TWO versions of their secular/suggestive music videos- the ‘clean’ version and the uncut or original version. This is common practice in most advanced music industries worldwide. Actually, our artistes ought to have known this already.

 So, if Psquare wants to have Alingo shown on local ‘free to air’ TV stations, all they need do is edit out the ‘erotic’ scenes pointed out by NBC while the original version continues airing on satellite channels. As for Timaya, ‘forget it o’, just stick with satellite TV stations, since the ‘bum bum song’ can clearly not be expressed in any other way IMO.

I expect the NBC to issue a comprehensive guideline to all Nigerian music practitioners so as to put an end to all these uncoordinated witch-hunting-like banning of certain music videos.

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