Lady Donli – Letters to Her


Blackface – The Colossus.

For the custodians of the new Nigerian music movement, you will know that Blackface had a hand in influencing its direction with The Plantashun Boiz in the fore front. It was and is still not news that Blackface wrote a lot of songs for the group plus his countless vocals either as a rapper or a singer. Blackface is somewhat versatile and would sing a love song but he could still drop hot 16 bar verse with ease and don’t forget he could do the dancehall thing. It wouldn’t be far fetched if I called him a jack of many styles.
In a recent podcast on Pulse TV, Blackface narrated his ordeals of how he started his music, how h and Tuface met for them to be become a duo. In the podcast he also mentioned numerous encounters with other artistes who he influenced and in one way or the other their sounds came out to define the current trajectory which we find ourselves today in the music industry. Numerous names he dropped; Tuface, Tony Tetuila, Marvelous Benjy to even Kelly Handsome. In all of this it is obvious that Blackface was not just a regular singer but a leader, one who would influence the
industry from the background without many people noticing it.

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D’Banj and Don Jazzy – Music and Magic.

One Wednesday night in 2005, while I flipped through the TV stations I bumped into a couple of Nigerian songs showing, I cant remember the station but this was the period when Nigerian music was beginning to gain traction as a mainstay. I was coming from an era that was predominantly dominated by foreign acts, so I was always thrilled when I heard music that could somewhat rival or be at least a substitute to what we got from outside Nigeria. That night while glued to my screen I saw the name D’Banj show on my screen with a song titled Tongolo, in my head I was asking who is this one again? I listened and watched on anyway. The next morning I heard myself singing “make I
tell them the koko oh, make I tell them the koko!” the song definitely was going to be a hit. It had the right recipe for success; simple lines that one could sing along to, a catchy chorus and a new buzzword “koko”. The beat was fresh, we had never heard anything like that before.

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Timaya – The Rebirth.

Like the saying goes, its not how far but how well. As for Timaya, it has been how far and how well. Over time we have seen Timaya lose weight to become more buff, drop the dreadlocks for a haircut and a beard to become a style icon, this self-reinvention has further more reflected in his music with Timaya refusing to be put in a box. Every time this man comes outs, he steps out with something fresh, you can actually see that he keeps pushing the envelope to create a brand that we have a vibe to but ultimately we cannot define. For every time we think we have defined him, he has come out a different person.
But this was not the Timaya we always knew. The brand Timaya was associated with a rough personality and the music showed the same. Even though he was already becoming a household name with his first and second albums having the same sound, it wasn’t until his third album “De Rebirth” he started breaking out of the mould he had set for himself. These first two albums were good for the market at that time but the fans were already growing tired of the “Dem mama, dem papa…thunder go kill you, my enemies will die” brand plus the growing need to focus on materialism which littered his first two albums; “True Story (2007), Gift and Grace (2008)”.

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Mr P and Rudeboy – A case of ‘Better Together’.

In September 2014, Scotland voted in a referendum to either stay or leave the United Kingdom, former Prime minister led the campaign to stay in with the United Kingdom, the theme of his message was simple “Better together”.

On this backdrop I would like to talk about Nigeria’s most popular twins, even though these aren’t the first or even the last singing and dancing twins with the likes of Mamuzee and of recent DNA signed to Mavin Records. Indeed no other pair can rival the success of this singing and dancing twins. Their star power was far more than what we have ever seen in this part of the world. Sold out concerts, stadiums packed full, girls screaming (in some cases fainting or crying), million naira endorsements and multiple awards the limit this particular set of twins knew no bounds except for them and their brother/manager. They were indeed larger than life, bigger than any stage they had ever performed but fame and fortune can create a rift that blood cannot hold together.

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Welcome to Show Dem Camp’s Palm Wine Joint

Show Dem Camp Palm Wine Music Vol 1 cover

While the album does sound like what you need to play and chill at joints where palm wine is served in champagne bottles, Ghost and Tec stay true to the type of music that separates them from the average rappers just spitting bars. The EP follows a theme from beginning to finish, and does not afford one the luxury of hitting the rewind button. Unless, maybe you do not know what palm wine is, or what the music sets out to achieve. Continue reading “Welcome to Show Dem Camp’s Palm Wine Joint”

Anthony Joshua – The Brain Drain Continues

Anthony Oluwafemi Joshua, a British heavyweight boxer, knocked out Ukrainian Vladimir Kiltschko on Saturday night to claim the IBF, vacant WBA (Super) and IBO heavyweight titles. The fight was held at the Wembley Stadium in London , England and attracted a post-war record audience of 90,000. Klitschko went down three times during the fight with Joshua, himself being downed once by the Ukrainian. Joshua, born of Nigerian parents is the most recent on a long list of entertainers, sportsmen and other professionals who have brought glory to other nations despite their Nigerian origins.

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Anthony Joshua vs Wladimir Klitschko

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Wale’s Shine Album Review on The Plug

Whilst writing about the Nigerian features on Wale’s new album, I also noticed an album review on DJ Booth’s The Plug as written by Yoh.

If you do not know about DJ Booth, I reckon the site is doing a really good job for the hip-hop genre and the articles on their are quite thorough as well as well thought through. However, on this instance, a few comments from the reviewer on tracks 4 and 10 do not seem too right. Then again, the reviewer has done a great job on the insights from the album on a ‘1 Listen Review’.

For track 4′, ‘Fine Girl, the reviewer uses  ‘Afrobeats/dancehall’ to describe the vibe he gets from the song. This again, places Wizkid, who his featured on that song, as an ‘Afrobeats’ act. For emphasis, Major Lazer and British female act ‘Dua Lipa’ are also on this song and their genres are far from the alluded ‘Afrobeats’ which does not still seem like the definition of the new Nigerian sound championed by D’Banj, Wiz and co.

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Wale’s New Album – Letting Nigerian Acts ‘Shine’

First of, shouts  out to Wale . He’s had quite a career, from doing songs with Lady Gaga (yes, Lady Gaga) to getting dropped off a major label and then getting on MMG. Numerous features, solo/compilation albums and mixtapes have followed since then. Lyrically, Wale is more poetic than most of his peers, just listen to lines like on Ross’s ‘Diced Pineapples’ and more. However, he could be a fine line around what J.Cole and K.Dot do. On his new album ‘Shine’ however and with features listed, it does appear Wale is evolving with the times. Features from G-Eazy Travis Scott, and even Major Lazer point to this.

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Yung 6ix – Artiste Name Logos & Branding

When one thinks of branding, the mind goes to logos and their development, as a part of branding. In music, record labels and allied companies have been known to go all out to develop their logo. However, not a lot put enough effort into this oft ignored aspect of the business/marketing and thus, miss the opportunity to also use this route to connect with their audience.

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Photo credit – Song Art from Yung Six

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