Monday, 8 December 2014

Protecting Nigeria’s Music Industry from International Awards.

If the United States of America had subjected its entertainment industry to interational awards for recognition, they would not have come this far. What the American did was to create their own international Award shows that support their own industry. Today, the whole world follows the Grammys, American Music Awards and the Oscars-international events created by Americans and used to develop America’s entertainment industry. These American-owned award shows also reward foreign artistes, but strictly foreign acts that have done well in American society and worldwide.

In sports, the Americans created a ‘world series’ for Basketball, Base ball and American football, games ONLY the Americans truly play (except for basketball).

In Africa, the South Africans have done something similar by creating world class media and awards platforms that seemingly provide credibility to African acts but in reality meant to generate revenue for South African companies and ‘perhaps’ curtail Nigeria’s dominance in the continent.

Without doubt Nigeria has the largest and most buoyant entertainment industry on the continent. Many Nigerian artistes sell out concerts in other African countries. Nigeria’s entertainment industry should have by now created world class media/award events to reward our own artistes and honor those from foreign lands we decide as worthy. Unfortunately, we have surrendered this task to the South Africans.

The just concluded Channel O 2014 Music Awards was an Eye-opener. Davido’s Aye, a song that prompted Rwanda’s President to personally receive Davido at Kigali international Airport for a private performance at the Presidential Palace. Aye, a music video with over twelve million YouTube views, received five nominations at the Channel O Awards but failed to win any. Rather, in one major category Davido’s Aye lost to South Africa’s “Doc Shebeleza” by Kasper Nyovest, a (good) song largely popular within SADC region whose video had a little over 600,000 YouTube views. Reasons given by Channel O organizers was that Davido’s fans did not vote. Ridiculous!

Most Nigerians do not have an idea of the psychological impact continuous losses of ‘international’ music awards can have, not just on the artistes but on Nigerian music fans across the globe.

Yes, yes Nigeria has dominated many continental music award shows in the past, we even won Big Brother Africa three times back to back at one time. However, some of us in our paranoid state of mind have conspiracy theories concerning Nigeria’s back to back BBA victories for example. I believe that Multi-Choice, the TV Platform and organizers of the reality show allowed Nigeria to win in order to curtail the aggressive onslaught by HiTV and Startimes back then, thereby endearing more Nigerian subscribers. HiTV folded up, Startimes and many more smaller Pay TV platforms are no competition for DSTV’s Multi-Choice in Nigeria. So, they can now relax...and do us anyhow.

It’s time Nigeria divorces herself from some of these biased so-called continental or international award shows and concentrates on developing her own version of the Grammys or the Oscars where we Nigerians get to decide who is ‘hot or not’ in both our domestic or international music scene. We have earned that right.

Let’s bring back Big Brother Nigeria, powered by a Nigerian platform.

By the way, who won the Big Brother Africa Hotshots? The South Africans need not bother about this because there is already a Big Brother SA version held every year, where a South African MUST win. The South Africans just sit back and allow ‘mumu’ Nigerians alongside other Africans to come hustle for Big Brother Africa’s $300,000 while their country makes a killing from Brand endorsements...and the shower hour.

Some say Nigerians are sore losers, we want to win every time...blah,blah blah!

They say it like it's a bad thing.


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