Editors Pick

Looking at the Alte creative, Ashley Okoli taking the Nigeria fashion Industry by storm with her experimental styling

Ashley Okoli is a 22 year old Nigerian Model, YouTuber, Influencer and the CEO of Sillet by Ash. Her clothing line Sillet is a favourite across the altè crowd. She has styled several artists and is credited as a stylist and creative director for Santi‘s “Raw Dinner,” Nonso Amadi‘s “Comfortable,” Lady Donli’s “Corner” video among several others.

She describes her childhood as free with her never having to hide her expressive self. Once studying Chemistry in the University,  she dropped out to start her brand. She lived in her car for a bit while finding her feet. Being a victim of bullying for her distinct style, she credits her self awareness as her shield to accept her difference and uniqueness.

Her style is free and edgy and encourages people to follow their own paths no matter how least trodden it is. Okoli uses her style and trends in fashion to reach her target audience, by prompting her followers to engage with the positivity of her brand and style. She has developed a strong community for herself to push her brand and other brands affiliated with her.

Okoli doesn’t just push her brands, she also runs a vlog where she shares her opinions on various subject matters. She advocates for the inclusion of women in everyday social and economic activities and encourages girls to follow their dreams.

With this article, we come to the end of our Women’s series for Women’s History Month.  We hope you enjoyed this series as much as we did.

Shining the spotlight on award winning media personality and film maker, Kemi Adetiba

Hello music lovers, it’s another Wednesday dedicated to the celebration of exceptional Nigerian women throughout the month of March. We will be shining the spotlight on a Nigerian female filmmaker. Our focus today is on Kemi Adetiba, a household name in the Nigerian Movie and Media Industry. You can read the first and second articles from our Women series here.

Kemi Adetiba is an award-winning media personality, producer, director and cinematographer. She is the founder of Kemi Adetiba visuals and President of K-Alpha Innovations, a production company which specialises in directing music videos. Born to Mayen and Dele Adetiba on the 8th of Jan, 1980. She got introduced to the media industry as a young child accompanying her father, a radio DJ to events. She also headlined commercials for detergent brand, OMO at an early age. She graduated from the department of Law, University of Lagos in 2005. She would move further to study film making at the New York Film Academy in 2007 after some years spent presenting and producing on TV.

Starting her career with Rhythm FM as a radio presenter, she was the voice behind Soul’d Out and Sundays at the Seaside: two nationally syndicated hit shows. She transitioned from radio to television presenting and producing several shows on Mnet. She was also a presenter for Maltina Dance All for 3 consecutive seasons, HipHop World Awards, Soundcity TV.

Music videos she has directed includes; Banky W’s Lagos Party, Follow you go, Waje’s Onye, Niyola’s Love to Love you ft. Banky W, Toh Bad, Last Bus stop, Tiwa Savage’s My Darling, Wizkid’s Tease Me, Dagrin’s If I Die and a host of many others.

Kemi Adetiba’s short film Across a Bloodied Ocean was screened at the 2009 Pan African Film Festival and National Black Arts Festival.

On 8 September 2016, Kemi Adetiba’s first feature film “The Wedding Party” (a Nigerian Rom-com film) premiered opening night, at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), as the opening film of the City-to-City Spotlight and on the 26th of November at Eko Hotel and Suites in Lagos. It quickly became the highest grossing film, a record which was broken in 2017 by its sequel.

In 2017 she was presenting the show “King Women” where she interviewed her mother Mayen Adetiba. Other former “King Women” included Chigurl, Ty Bello, Taiwo AjaiLycett and Tara Durotoye.

Her political crime thriller, King of Boys (2018)  grossed 245 million naira at Box Office. King of Boys became the Nigerian film with the highest number of awards at 2019 AMAA. The film got nine nominations and won three, which are NFVCB Best Nigerian Film, Best Actress in a Supporting Role and Best Actress in a Leading Role.

Some of the awards her works have won include Best Female Video for the song “Ekundayo” by TY Bello at the Soundcity TV Music Video Awards. Kemi was nominated for Best Music Video Director of the Year at  The Headies 2014. She won the City People Entertainment Award for Best Music Video Director Of The Year (2015) and a HNWOTY Award for Woman of the Year in Film and Television (2017).

We celebrate this pioneering woman director and film maker for her talent, versatility anddedication to telling our unique African stories globally. By the way, KOB 2 is soon to hit our screens. It is easily the most anticipated Nigerian movie right now.

Burna Boy stands Twice as Tall with new Grammy award

The 63rd Grammy Awards held yesterday at  Los Angeles, US. The 2021 biggest music Awards night in order to observe social distancing had 5 different stages arranged in a circle for the performers and no audience at the Los Angeles convention centre where the event took place.

It was a big night for Afrobeats as global stars Wizkid and Burnaboy bagged awards at the event.

Damini Ogulu popularly known as Burnaboy from Porthacourt, Nigeria won the Best Global Music Album category for his album “Twice as Tall”.

Twice as Tall was released on August 13, 2020. The 15 track album features the likes of British artist Stormzy, Chris Martin, Sauti Sol, Naughty by nature and Youssou N’Dour.

This was his second nomination at the Grammys. His first was for his 2019 “African Giant” album which he lost to Angelique kidjo in the category then known as Best World Music album. In solidarity for African music, Angelique Kidjo dedicated her win to him.

While the artiste released his first album L.I.F.E in 2013, he started receiving international acclam with his hit track “Ye” which caught the attention of Kanye in 2018. Many felt Burna was robbed of his 2019 Grammy Award.

In an interview he had with The PGM Club 6 months ago to discuss his Twice as Tall album, he spoke on his inability to bag the 2019 Grammy nomination and his feelings afterwards. He said;

It’s like steps, you get tired and devastated and it’s like you just want to do more than you’ve ever done before and then you just don’t care anymore. (Laughs) and then you just want to keep going. You just have no breaks at that point…

The Grammys described Twice as Tall as “a masterclass in the vibe and hustle that have made Burna Boy an international music force. He continues to torch limitations, seamlessly blending styles and genres and fearlessly fuelling the fire hearing the melting pot of Pop, Afrobeat, Dancehall, Reggae and more.”

The album was littered with socially conscious songs dealing with colonialism and its remnants on the African continent, the steadfast corruption of the Nigerian government and their massacres. It comes at no surprise that Burna has achieved this feat and proves himself as the legend he says he is.

Honouring sensational singer and stage actress, Yinka Davies

Hello music lovers, it’s another day to celebrate talented Nigerian women. In par with Women’s History Month, we will be celebrating four outstanding Nigerian creatives dominating their various niches and breaking barriers in their industry.  The first part of this series already went up and if you’re interested in reading about the Nigerian-American writer redefining Sci-fi and Fantasy genre, have a look here. Today we turn the focus on Music and Theatre. We celebrate sensational singer and stage actress, Yinka Davies.

Yinka Davies is a Nigerian lyricist, dancer, vocalist and judge of reality TV show,  Nigerian idol. Yinka Davies father was from the Lisabi Clan from Benin republic although his mum was from the Royal family in Shagamu, Lagos. Yinka’s mum hailed from Ikorodu in Lagos state. She grew up mostly with her grandmother with her parents being divorced and her dad mostly away as he served in the Air-force.

She attended Reagan Memorial Baptist Primary school, Onike, Yaba, Lagos, for her elementary education and Our Lady of Apostles secondary school, Yaba, for her secondary education. She didn’t go to University by Choice.

The 50 year old thespian grew up listening to the sounds of Sam Cooke, Elvis Presley, Jimmy Dean and the likes. On the radio in her grandmother’s house, she would listen to a variety of African music ranging from Cameroun Makossa to Igbo highlife and Fela’s Afrobeats. In the 1980s, she listened to Salawa Abeni and Dora Ifudu who was one of the female musicians who influenced her.

She forrayed into the world of Art first with painting and sculpting. In 1987 she visited the National Theatre in Lagos to meet Abiodun Olaku, renowned Nigerian painter to better her craft and soon fell in love with the ambiance of the theatre. On one of her many visits, she stumbled on Ghanaian dancer, Elizabeth Hammond and became inspired to become a dancer. She was nominated for the Fame Music Awards for their first Upcoming artist Award in 1992

The management of a club in Lagos, Bread and Butter Jazz Club involved her in the last presentation as a club in their efforts to introduce a new renaissance artist “Lagbaja” and she was involved in the production of his first album “Side by Side” released in 1993. She moved on to collaborate with many more Nigerian recording artists such as Mike Okri, Geraldo Pino, Etienne T Boy, Shina Peters and many others. She worked as both choreographer and backup vocalist.

Her albums include; Work, Emi n’lo and Black Chiffon. For stage, she was involved in Things Fall Apart directed by Bassey Effiong, Lion and the Jewel directed by Bassey Effiong, Wind vs Polygamy directed by Sam Loco Efe, Kakaki concert directed by Ben Tomoloju, Death and The King’s Horseman directed by Bayo Oduneye and so many others.

Yinka Davis is one of the many inspiring women in Theatre . She has been in the Nigerian entertainment industry for over 28 years. As we celebrate Women’s History Month. We celebrate her drive, consistency and dedication to her craft. We hope the bright smiles and laughter she brings with her everywhere doesn’t cease.

Celebrating International Women’s Day with talented Alte singers

Hey music lovers, Happy International Women’s Day. On this global day set aside to celebrate womanhood, The PGM Club celebrates talented Alte singers in the music industry. As the theme for this year’s IWD is #choosetochallenge. We choose to celebrate women challenging the barriers to a more equal society. We choose to challenge young girls and women to remember how spectacular they are, the magic they bring to the world and to never dim their light to suit impoverishing, outdated narratives.

In no particular order, we are going to be celebrating female alte singers for their drive, talent and ambition in the music space.

Kicking off with delectable singer Tems who was literally a breath of fresh air to appear in 2019. She introduced herself with her stunning debut “Mr Rebel” and has gone on to release mind blowing tracks like “Try me”, “Looku looku”, “Damages”, her debut EP ” For Broken Ears” and many more.

Duduke crooner, best known by her stage name  Simi, is one of the awe inspiring voices to come out of Nigeria. She started making waves after her release of “Tiff” with Falz. She has released 3 studio albums and her latest EP ” Restless II” was released October 2nd, 2020. Her record label, Studio Brat launched in June 2019.

Majesty Lyn, Nigerian singer and 360 Incubation/RMG act was introduced to many through “Alternate Ending”. She went on to release her debut EP ” Four Twenty”. She had a stand alone song “Nobody” on “Sounds from the basement Gig vol.1”. She has gone on to release tracks like “Find your way”, ” IBTL(it’s been too long) etc. The porthacourt bred artiste sings R&B, ballads as well as raps.

Bella Alubo is an alternative singer and songwriter signed under Tinny Entertainment alongside Ycee. The artist who grew up writing poems dropped a collaborative EP with Ycee in 2018 titled “Late Night Vibrations with Ycee”. She was nominated as one of the promising acts to watch out for in 2018.  She has dropped singles like “Radio”, “Agbani” featuring zlatan, “Gimme Love”, “Gbolahan” and her latest single with Psycho YP and Lava lava, “GbaGbe”.

DYO formerly known as Ms D is London based singer and songwriter. She was credited as a featured artist and co-writer for all three of rapper Wiley’s hit singles from his 2013 album “The Ascent” including UK Chart #1 single “Heatwave”. In December 2021, she was featured on “Dependency”, the debut single by English singer Charlie Brown. In 2018, she collaborated with Adekunle Gold on his about 30 Album “Down with You”. She released “Let them talk” with Simi December 2020 and is such a talented singer and songwriter.

Nigerian-canadian singer and songwriter,  Falana is also on our radar. This multi-instrumentist dropped her debut EP “Things Fall Together ” four years ago. She has performed alongside Jennifer Hudson and John Legend at the Global Citizen Prize awards that held at Kensington pavilion royal, London in 2019. She was in fact, the only African performer at the event. Some of her songs include; teletele, Hoy Daria Yo la vida, Joy etc.

Ama Serwah Genfi, professionally known as Amaarae, is a Ghanian-American singer and  songwriter. Popular for her Androgynous dress style, she featured in Vogue Magazine online in 2018 and was named one of Vogue’s Online Top 100 style influencers in 2018. She has collaborated with the likes of Santi, Odunsi, Wande Coal, Stonebwoy, Kojey Radical and a host of others.  She was named one of Apple Music Africa’s Favourite New Artist in April 2018.

Niniola, is a talented Nigerian singer who has earned the title “Queen of Afrohouse”. After finishing third runner-up in the 6th edition of Project Fame West Africa, she released debut single “Ibadi” which got included to the soundtrack for season 2 of Gidi up. Her song Maradona released in 2017 earned her nominations at the 2018 BET Awards. Her song was sampled for Beyonce’s “Find your way Back” and she received a Grammy nomination certificate for her work as a composer on The Lion King: The Gift. She has recently released an R&B Ep titled “6th Heaven”.

Tomi Owo, is a soulful singer with dynamic vocal abilities. She terms her sound “Alternative Soul”. Her debut EP “pieces” was a culmination of a one-song-a-month project she embarked on in september 2015 to explore her sound and songwriting. She released “Versus” 3 years ago, featured on Phlow’s “Marmalade”, and released “Beautiful” and a remix EP with Amapiano and Afrobeat remixes on it.

F3line, is one of the newest additions to Talent management company, Chase Music. On the Cbase EP, F3line sings in “Lemons” and “Go Back Home”. The singer is one to look out for and we anticipate new music from her soon.

Euphemia Runyi Ekumah otherwise known as GoodGirl LA is an Afro-fusion artist with inspiration from greats like Michael Bolton, Michael Jackson and Beyonce. The 23 year old singer released her first song “Faraway” which started gaining her momentum. She went on to release “Fantasy”, “bless me”, “la confidential EP”, D4DM and her latest release “Bando”. She also recently got featured in Vector’s “Early Momo”.

And finally, we have Naya Akanji . This Afro-fusion artist released a collaborative EP with Lemar Abdul “Vivid Emotions” in 2020 which showcased Naya’s incredible talent and artistry. She has released songs like “No words”, “Ojoro” etc.

 

 

 

 

Gentleman crooner, Ric Hassani centers love in his new 17 track album titled “The Prince I Became”

Ric Hassani comes through with a new project “The Prince I became”. It is a 17 track album enlisting various African talents from varying genres to produce an exceptional musical experience.  The artists featured on the album are; Fumbani Changaya, Sauti Sol, Nicky Jam, Zoro, Kuami Eugene, Called out music and Frank Edwards.

The tracks on the album are; Everything, Body conversation, You’re my baby, My kind of Woman, Thunder fire you, Angel, My Only Baby, A little bird told me, All my love, Do Lai Dat, Rising Sun, Mine forever, When I’m gone, Rain, Victory belongs to Jesus, Samuel’s prayer and Korede.

Love which is regarded as the greatest cosmic force is perhaps the most discussed topic ever. As social beings fumbling through the world around us, we crave intimacy and connection. Someone to do life with, someone to fall back on when the world gets cold and distressing. Someone we hope lends us kindness on our worst days. The singer through this project explores our primal desire for interconnectedness. Ric Hassani navigates thumping percussions as he leaps through hurdles in his love life. This time, the focus is on romantic relationships although the album touches on Philia and even Agape love, evoking feelings of peace and tranquility in his listeners. The growth in his sound is apparent and his artistry quite evident.

The singer begins the album with Everything where he professes that his new found girl is everything he has ever wanted and desired. After almost losing hope, he finds a girl who shows him what true love is. He has all that he has ever desired. This girl is everything he has ever needed to feel complete.

There is a switch from the first cheery song to a more sensual tune, Body Conversation. In this song, Ric requires no words. This time around, say nothing and let the body do the talking.

With amazing vocals and soft melodies, Ric Hassani claims his baby and states he is her man in You’re my Baby. Sounds like the perfect soundtrack to a Hollywood romance movie.

Sauti Sol brings the Kenyan blues to My Kind of Woman. Her natural beauty and perfect smile brings peace and light to their lives. Both artists are in sync and the harmony in their voices, pure perfection.

The song that follows, Thunder fire you, released a few days ago has already become a favourite amongst fans. Although banned from playing by the NBC (Nigerian Broadcasting Commission), it is still being heavily streamed on digital platforms . It’s the way he made a heavy insult bougie for us. Makes it rather comic without taking away from the depth of the emotions portrayed in the song.

Nicky Jam’s fusion of indigenous language makes Angel pure bliss to listen to.

In the next sweet melody that follows, My Only Baby, the artist celebrates the beauty and charm of his lover and his desire to make her his only baby.

Next comes a 1:31 mins interlude with Fumbani Changaya. The rest of the songs continue to speak on love in all its dimensions even agape love. While tracks like All my love, Do lai Dat, Rising sun, Mine Forever, When I’m gone, Rain are concerned with Eros.  There are tracks dedicated to God’s love “Victory belongs to Jesus” and even Philia love; A quick prayer from a friend concerning the album titled “Samuel’s prayer” which oddly does not feel out of place in this project.

The children choir in Korede and Family’s prayer give the last track such a beautiful aura.

The album has a total runtime of 54 mins and with these beautiful Afropop and R&B melodies, you can’t get enough. Great artistry from songwriting to vocals down to production. The project is riddled with Smooth and Classic songs which will forever be evergreen.

The conversations about love are relatable. Sequencing is spot on, we do not need to wade through mediocre tracks as every song on the album is noteworthy. This DeeYasso production  is an all round stellar production.

Best tracks on the album are My Kind of Woman ft. Sauti Sol, Thunder fire you, Korede and You’re my baby.

We rate this album an 8/10.

Listen to the album and enjoy.

Africanfuturism and Africanjujuism writer, Nnedi Okorafor is first on our list for Women’s History Month

Hey music lovers, it’s another month of March and we are officially celebrating Women’s History month. In this month carved out to highlight the contributions of women to events in history and contemporary society, we shine the light on four amazing Nigerian women in Arts and Media owning their creative spaces.

In this first article of our Four part women series, our spotlight is on Nigerian-American sci-fi, magical realism and fantasy writer, Nnedi Okorafor. Her name Nnedi is short for Nnedimma. She describes her work as Africanfuturism and Africanjujuism for children and adults.

The American born daughter of Nigerian parents desired to be an entomologist due to her fascination with insects as a child. She was also a nationally known athlete. However, a rare spine complication after a spine fusion surgery she had to do to deal with the Scoliosis she was diagnosed with at the age of 13 rendered her immobile from the waist down.  Turning to writing to provide her succour, she developed an interest and took creative writing classes after she had regained her walking ability through physical therapy although now unable to continue her athletic career.  Nnedi holds a PhD in Literature and two MAs in Journalism and Literature.

Her African heritage take center place in her writings and she is highly influenced by Nigerian Myths, folklore and stories. Desiring more diversity in the fantasy space, she writes  mostly about black female heroes while navigating serious social issues. With her work, she redefines the genre of Fantasy with Africans at the heart.

Nnedi has won a Hugo, a Nebula, a World Fantasy Award and a Locus Award. Her novels include WHO FEARS DEATH, AKATA WITCH, ZAGRAH THE WINDSEEKER, THE SHADOW SPEAKER, LAGOON, KABU KABU, THE BOOK OF PHOENIX, LONG JUJU MAN and many more.

Nnedi has also written comics for Marvel, including BLACK PANTHER: LONG LIVE THE KING and WAKANDA FOREVER and the SHURI series, an Africanfuturist comic series LAGUARDIA (from Dark Horse) and her short  memoir BROKEN PLACES AND OUTER SPACES. Nnedi is also copywriting the adaption of Octavia Butler’s WILD SEED with Viola Davies and Kenyan film director Wanuri Kahiu.

We celebrate Nnedi Okorafor for breaking barriers in the Fantasy genre with focus on African storytelling and Characters. Not only has she carved a niche for herself, she stands out as a contemporary Nigerian writer. She makes us proud and we hope her work is inspirational to all those who come across it.

Top 50 albums and EPs of 2020

The year is finally off to an end and we are buzzing with the cheer of new beginnings, albeit with a little caution. We do not want to repeat the mistake of being so enthusiastic for the year just like we were for 2020 but then when it finally arrived, it shocked us all.

First, a pandemc that wiped out thousands of lives. We were locked in our homes unable to connect physically with our friends and loved ones. The pandemic not only restricted us to house arrests and lockdowns, it restructured our way of life as we knew it. There was a plummet in our frequenting of resturants, pubs, parties, clubs and many others. But in the way that humans have always been resilient, we innovated and adapted . We found new ways to retouch and rekindle with people: a rise in virtual meetings, virtual concerts, rise of new apps like Tik Tok where people with enough free time started dances and challenges that travelled wide and far.

It was definitely hard for artists to put out music at a point when we were tending to illnesses and losing loved ones. Some had it worse than others. There was the Black lives matter movement triggered by the death of George Floyd that tore our hearts and when we thought it couldn’t get worse, there was the massacre of Innocent Nigerians whose only crimes were demanding a better socio-political climate for them to thrive. They demanded to not be killed, wrongly profiled and harrassed, they demanded for justice and were met with hot water canons, tear gas and bullets. In all this, we sought succour in one of the universal languages known to man; Music.

Somehow African music still managed to shine, we had an array of singers, writers, producers, curators etc that offered us an eclectic mix of sounds varying in styles and genres. There were a couple of projects put out by the veterans and experimental futurist sounds from the newcomers. We mourned with music, held steadfast and protested with music, celebrated and rejoiced with music the only way we knew how. In this light, we at PGM bring to you the top 50 albums and extended plays this year that made it just a little bearable maybe even enjoyable. Songs that dulled the ache for a little bit and even made us dance. In no particular order, here is our top 50 albums for 2020;

  1. Pioneers – DRB Lasgidi
  2. Boo of the booless – Chike
  3. Empress – Yemi Alade
  4. Colours & Sounds – Niniola
  5. My side of the story – Busiswa
  6. Nudes – Moonchild Sanelly
  7. Gratitude – Timaya
  8. Kpanlogo – Darkovibes
  9. For broken ears – Tems
  10. Made in Lagos- Wizkid
  11. Cult – Paybac Iboro
  12. Flavour of Africa – Flavor
  13. Grace – DJ Spinall
  14. African Time Deluxe version – Krizbeatz
  15. Three – Patoranking
  16. Apollo – Fireboy DML
  17. Celia – Tiwa Savage
  18. Twice as Tall – Burna boy
  19. Anloga Junction – Stonebwoy
  20. Carpe Diem – Olamide
  21. Jiggy pack – Kida Kudz
  22. Everything you heard is true – Odunsi the Engine
  23. Oxygen – Oxlade
  24. Off the record – Reekado Banks
  25. Mirage  – Mannywellz
  26. National Anthem – Psycho YP
  27. Lava feels – Joey B
  28. Original Copy – Cuppy
  29. I am the King of Amapiano – Kabza de Small
  30. Yabasi- Basketmouth
  31. Afropop vol 1 – Adekunle Gold
  32. Restless II – Simi
  33. Get layd – Omah lay
  34. See the Queue – CDQ
  35. Wildfire – Prettyboy D.O
  36. Zaza Vibes – LAX
  37. Afrosoul deluxe – Wurld
  38. King of Love – Kizz Daniels
  39. To the world and beyond – Sun El-musician
  40. Blackstar – Kelvyn Boy
  41. Send them to the Conventry – Pa Salieu
  42. Any minute now – Cassper Nyovest
  43. Zulu man with power – Nasty C
  44. Small world – Ricky Tyler
  45. Midnight Train – Sauti sol
  46. Pianochella – Major league DJz
  47. SG hubuses Excellent – Focalist
  48. National Anthem – Psycho YP
  49. Yellow – Brymo
  50. The Angel you don’t know – Amaarae

Remember to wash your hands regularly, wear your mask and maintain social distancing. Cheers to the new year. Happy 2021.

 

Krizbeatz releases deluxe version of his crtitically acclaimed album “African Time”

Award winning producer and DJ, Krizbeatz releases the deluxe version of his critically acclaimed album “African Time” dropped on the 17th of July, 2020. The deluxe version dropped on Christmas Eve, contains 15 songs and has a runtime of 47mins. All songs mixed by Mighty mix. A/R are Chris Alvin and Oyin Amen. The artist pushes boundaries with Afro sound in his new project African Time Deluxe Version.

Chris Krizbeatz Alvin has produced/co-
produced lots of hit songs such as Tekno’s Pana and Diana, Lil kesh’s Kilo shele gan gan. He has already released his own singles Erima and 911 which currently has over 10million views on YouTube.

The album is power packed with talents across various parts of Africa offering a supersonic African experience on this joint. The drummer boy starts the album with Happy Deluxe, a sunny tune encouraging his listeners to be happy and smile. The next song African Time with Teni extols several historical African figures and a united Africa. The likes of Brenda Fassie, Lucky Dube, Mandela, Kwame Nkrumah, Fela Kuti e.t.c are mentioned. Next comes, Abi featuring Platinum with his verse and hook while Ceeboi raps. Mr Eazi employs his vocals in Pamela pleading for her love and  forgiveness while Vanessa Mdee embodies a frustrated lover. Special Love with Sammi and Faze is a love song professing affections and romance. Reekado and Rayvanny follow up with another love song to Aminah. Phyno, Timaya and Ceeboi are not left out of the love fever in My baby. Riddim with Yemi Alade and Skales is a dope party starter sure to get the people grooving. Then comes Hit with Teni and Tekno and another verson, this time an (ADM remix), Falz uses his regular comical lyrics to affect in Ogede with Nandy offering mesmerizing vocals and Fuse Odg adding the Ghanian spice. Tekno and Platinum are in Proper, Obesere and Skuki deliver street rhythm CUM, Ethics sings  Nitolee and Coco Deluxe done by Tekno, Dj Tira and Harmonize.

Mr Eazi wants to experiment with fans owning shares in his unreleased music

Yesterday, Mr Eazi stated in a couple of tweets that he would like to give his fans the opportunity to buy shares of his unreleased songs giving them equity in his sound. This surprised a few as they wondered how this relatively new business model would play out. The norm has been for investments to be done in record labels via debt or equity with profit making from streaming platforms, record sales e.t.c. This means that this time, profit would be made off royalties from the song rather than investing in a record label. Lets dive a little into what all this means, the processes involved and the benefits this rising business model offers both the artist and investing fans.

Equity shares are a means of finance sourcing for companies selling shares to the general public awarding it’s investors with voting rights, profit and can allow them claim assets of the company.

Music royalties are compensatory payments received by rights holders and their respective representatives in exchange for the licensed use of their music. The royalties are paid out by institutions usually Tv stations, radio stations, streaming platforms e.t.c that use the music. Royalties are paid for either Masters or Compositions, that is, the licensed use of sound recording and for the authorised use of sound composition committed to a tangible medium which could be a music sheet, notepad or even a line in a tweet.

There are diverse kinds of royalting; from streaming royalties, digital performance royalties, sync licensing fees to even public performance royalties. People entitled to royalties include; recording artists, labels, songwriters, distributors, relicensing companies and sync agencies, publishers and even collective management organizations. In Essence, Mr. Eazi’s proposed business model seeks to allow listeners into the sect of people who can profit off royalties.

Artists such as Drake, Beyonce,Jay-z, Justin Timberlake e.t.c have sold slices of their catalogues on Royal Exchange. “The premise behind Royalty Exchange is simple: depending on what the seller is offering, you bid for a percentage of a song, the entirety of a song, or a catalogue of songs, and receive quarterly royalty payments based on how much money the song/catalogue earned during that period. Depending on the deal, you will make money every time a song is streamed on Spotify, Apple, or YouTube, anytime it is performed live, anytime it is played on the radio.

You get royalties from use in advertising campaigns, film trailers, soundtracks, TV spots, whenever it is blasted over the speakers at an NFL game. As with any other stocks, you can buy low and take a chance on a relatively unknown artist, hoping they will blow up and fund your first yacht, or buy into a perennial best-seller and look forward to steady, solid returns.”

What’s in it for the artists?

The money generated will be used to cover overhead costs in music production. It allows artists to diversify both their risk (protecting against potential royalty shortfalls in the future) and income stream ( allowing artists use the money to invest in new revenue streams).

What’s in it for the investors?

Low barrier to entry, owning a portion of evergeeen music for life can be one of the paths to financial freedom.

There are however some issues to be clarified. How will IP evaluation be carried out for unreleased music? What happens if a song is taken off streaming sites due to either copyright infringements or artist cancellation due to some offensive behaviour say for example, sexist or racist comments or violent behaviour? What are taxation laws like around profits made this way? Will there be a fixed percentage or does it change with time? How do we ensure that the quality of the music is preserved and not just profit centered streams to ensure investors make back their money? How will people in the equity pool be managed? Will there be an opportunity for shareholders to exchange real-time information with Mr Eazi’s team? Till all these are figured out, it still remains murky waters to be threaded with caution.

Mr Eazi since 2016 has consistently been top 5 most streamed African artist. It is quite a brilliant idea for the artist as his streams are expected to go off the roof with increased retention of subscribers and help gain traction with streaming services, consequently increasing numbers and revenue. If this idea becomes more mainstream in Nigeria, becoming an angel investor finding fresh talent and investing in their songs for cheap before they blow up, if they do, will actually fetch you some serious bucks. It would be amazing to own some parts and make profit from timeless music, music ingrained from childhood . Imagine receiving royalties from Mariah Carey’s ‘All i want for christmas is you’, We would be smiling to the bank every festive season just as she does. Evergreens being a purchasable commodity to be floated on the stock market is sure a welcome development to the Nigerian music Industry. There is the however the possibility that not much profits may be made on some songs which come out as massive hits and dissapear as quickly as they came.

With music no longer physically selling, artist, labels and everyone in the music value chain have been forced to find new ways to make money and because of the rise of streaming platforms, It will lead to increased competition, sophistication and massive growth in the industry. It would also a testament to what can happen when creators and industries are allowed to operate freely without stifling laws and policies from the government. With the rise of platforms like vezt, this might soon become the new normal.

 

 

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