2007: THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY
Okay folks. We have finally said adieu to 2007. Twelve exciting months, filled with rhythm and groove, notes and tones, overdose of pleasure and a little sprinkle of agony. With each passing week, I captured the event as they came: the good, the not-so-good, and the outrightly bad. What better way to begin the year 2008 than take you on an excursion into those moments that shaped the showbiz industry in 2007?
At home and abroad, Nigerian acts carted home awards this year like the plaques were going out of fashion. The Hip Hop world Awards in march was a fabulous enactment of glamour and razzmatazz. Then AMEN awards returned again, after a two-year hiatus. Same for the Nigerian music awards which despite myriad logostic and credibility problems, moved a large chunk of the showbiz industry to Abuja for a weekend. In South Africa, D’Banj and De Indispensables did Nigeria proud at the Channel O Spirit of Africa music video awards. And on September 19, 2face showed he still got the juice when he beat four other African heavyweights to become the first Nigerian to win a MOBO award. As if to show that it was a year of awards for Nigeria, D’Banj registered his name in the MTV hall of fame when, in November, he became the second Nigerian to be named best African act at the MTV EMA. Not to forget that in 2007, Audu Maikori engraved his name in history when he was named the global winner for British Council’s International Young Music Entreprenuer of the year for 2007. And Callyvision Networks beat other contenders to become the fisrt body to organise a Nigerian music video awards when the NMVA held in December…Soon, very soon, most acts will be needing a warehouse to keep their comminuty of Plaques…
THISDAY EVENTS CENTREAt a time when everyone was complaining about the lack of suitable event venues in Lagos. At a time when promoters and organisers were already contemplating moving major events to Abuja, somewhere surfaced in Lagos that put a stop to all the complaints, all the planned exodus. The This Day centre for Arts and Education came like a thief in the night, and has held the entire industry hostage ever since. With a capacity to accommodate over 15,000 revellers, amazing car park facility and fool-proof security, is it any surprise every major event this year held at the Lekki venue?
THE CARS Gone are those days when artistes got the fame without the fortune. Gone are those days when you;l come across a best-seller on a commercial bus , or see your favourite star riding in a rickety contraption that’s supposed to be a personal car. These days, some of the biggest rides on the road are owned by showbiz players. So much that very soon, it won’t be surprising if the begin to move to acquire chppoers and private jets. What do you want to talk about? D-one’s Chevrolet avalanche truck? 2face Idibia’s Range Rovers sport? (oh, by the way, Keke, OJB, ID, Kevin Luciano and few others also have the smashing auto), Ruggedman’s Murano jeep and VW Touareg? The Lincoln Navigator (owbed by obesere, KSA, 2face Idibia, Pasuma…), Dbanj’s shark fin BMW? Or segun Obe’s new Nissan Tiida? The list goes on and on, that’s without nemtioning Ali Baba’s Nissan frontier Truck!
PLANTASHUN BOIZ REUNIONTJOE Records executed the coup that brought the rested R&B group back together. After months of speculations, the trio hit studios and put together the first P.Boiz album in three years. Titled Plan B, the album calmed nerves a bit, especially for die-hard Plantashun Boiz fans who had missed the group sorely. We’re still patiently awaiting the videos…
EEDRIS/RUGGEDMAN RECONCILIATIONIt’s six years since the historic ‘ehen pt 1’ where Ruggedman took eedris, Rasqui, Maintain and Black Reverendz to the cleaners. As if to show that nerves had calmed, both ‘rappers’ before now sworn enemies, got together several times, settled their differences, and hit the studio for their first collaboration. Okay, they haven’t exactly become ‘5 and 6’ yet, but it’s certain the beef is dead!
ORLANDO OWOH For years he was down with stroke. Completely incapacitated and out of funds, the veteran musician was losing all hope of recovery. But this year, thanks to a couple of his fans (including Osun state’s Olagunsoye Oyinlola), a determination to live, and the grace of God, the ageing musician is bouncing back to live again. Resuming public appearances, he is even said to have dumped the crutches… what next? Maybe in 2008, he’ll hit the studios and cook another classic album…
MULTIPLE ROBBERIES:So many acts were robbed in 2007 that now, the demand for body guards is soaring rapidly. From Kemistry to 2face Idibia, Soul E, Tee Mac, Mike Aremu and Weird MC, dozens of acts were dispossessed of valuables. Others, like 2face, were shot. While, a few lucky ones, like Weird MC escaped without having any lossess to count…
ACCIDENTS:One management duo Emem Ema and Ikhane Akhigbe are lucky to be alive. They were driving together in Akhigbe’s car when a reckless driver ran into them in Lagos. Same for debuting rapper Sasha who crashed er Toyota Camry few months back. It’s obvious that Lagos roads are bad… And, for acts who are naturally nocturnal species, they constantly paid for it with their cars… thank God no lives were lost this year (and thankfull,y the roads are getting better too…)
FUJI WAR The decades-old rivalry between Sikiru Ayinde Barrister and Ayinla Kollington was revived again in 2006 when both musicians recorded fresh songs attacking each other. And in 2007, the war went on, with both washing their dirty linens in full public glare…gladly though, concerned fans cautioned them and the ‘war’ hs since been rested…Similary, the bitter war between Saheed Osupa and Pasuma wonder took an ugly angle when fans attempted to lynch Osupa at a memorial event for Kollington Ayinla’s mom held in Lagos.Even though there now exists a peace treaty of sorts, those in the know maintain it’s only a matter of time before the warring acts begin to call themselves unprintable names again…
SOUL E VS COLOSSAL: The love between singer Soul E and his label turned sour after the young singer reportedly walked out of his deal with the label. And, after months of throwing missiles at each other through the media, both arties headed for the law courts. The case is still pending in a lagos high court…
QUESTIONMARK ENTERTAINMENT In 2006, the label lost a director, a recording act, and a producer. In 2007, it lost another director and another recording act. But it didn’t stop there. Attempts to resuscitate the label saw head-honcho Kevin Luciano taking the back seat while Deji Richards was appointed CEO. But it didn’t take long before bitterness set in again. This time, the label lost the whole management team. And with a court case pending (between Richards and Luciano), an on-going investigation, and unfavourable media reports… who can say how much the once thriving label still has to lose?
POLICE RAID AFRICA SHRINEJust as the year was beginning to close, polimen decided to raid the new Afrika Shrine (in agidingbi-ikeja, Lagos). The raid which was carried out on Saturday December 15, infuriated the Anikulapo-kutis, especially Yeni who described it as mere victimization. 331 people were reportedly arrested though it is not certain if any charges were pressed. It is also belived that over 50 cars and 27 motorcycles were seized by the police from Area F command in Lagos…
SONY OKOSUN’S ILLNESS It can be said that veteran performer Sony Okosuns did not enjoy good health al through the year. The ageing legend who many speculated was down with tuberculosis, has actually been plagued by a severe infection of the colon, according to a source close to him. And, thankfully, the musician-turned evangelist is believed to be responding to treatment…
FEMI KUTI’S MANY WOMENWhile many are still scheming and praying, hoping that omeday, Femi and his estranged wife Funke will reconcile and live together again as husband and wife , Femi kuti is hugging polygamy big time, following in the footsteps of his late father Fela. With a kid from one of his dancers, another from his son’s lesson teacher, a couple of adropted children, and yet more kids of his own, those close to the afrobeat star say he has over seven kids to call his own now. And the women? It won’t be a surprise if he’s beginning to lose count…
2FACE IDIBIA GUNSHOT But for God, and the laptop computer on his laps, 2face Idibia would have been dead meat on October 4, 2007. the iconic singer who just returned from the UK (where he won a MOBO for best African act) was shot by armed bandits. Left hospitalised for days, with 22 pellets in his thigh, it was a moment for fans to show the singer tremendous love again…
DEATH, OH DEATH… Lucianno Pavarotti, Pimp C, Lucky Dube. Those are some of the international music stars that gave up the ghost in 2007. Back home, we lost Pupa Pee, a ghetto-bred dancehall cat who fought for decades to establish a music career for himself. Then Sammie Okposo and Kollington Ayinla wept like babies when they lost their mothers…
KSB AND EDDY Eddy Remedy and his wife Kenny St Brown fell apart 1n 2007, after years of trying to make their marriage work. And the media war that followed was embarrassing, not just for the showbiz couple, but for their friends and family… did, any see the break coming? Yes!
DARE &DEOLA AYENI :The lovebirds tied the knots early this year. Many criticize dare for settling down so early, like it’s their business. And now that there’s a baby in the picture, the Abuja-based couple even have more reasons to give thanks to God…
SOUL E AND URE OKEZIE: Just like Dare, Soul E got many tongues wagging when he decided to settle down with an older lover. Since married and living together, Emmanuel Okose and Ure have become inseparable, like the snail and its shell…
SASHA AND NAETO CNow, they have not come out to admit they’re dating. But those close to the Storm records’ acts continue to insist both rappers are an item…. True or false? Only time can tell…
OBI ASIKA AND YETS BAKARE: He lives in Lagos. She lives in the UK. Both neither distance nor space can diminish their love. Storm records boss Obi Asika might be inviting us all to a wedding reception soo. Don’t ask me who the bride and groom would be!
2FACE AND PERO ADENIYI: The off-and-on lovers still got our attention this year. They made a baby in 2006. now, there are rumours of another bay in the making. But Idibia still found time to hang around his other ‘baby-mama’ Sumbo. Just as he still stole plenty of time to be with Annie Macauley, and several other ladies who can’t resist his charm…
THE BEST OF 2007
HOTTEST MUSIC VIDEO DIRECTORS
HIGHEST PAID ACTS(In no particular order)
K 1 Ultimate
BEST SELLING ACTS OF 2007
This day Music festival: For the second year running, the thisday music festival shocked conservatives with a line-up that included Shakira, John Legend, Kelly Rowland and Diddy. It has now become an annual tradition with thousands of fans already looking forward to 2008…
Pepsi concert: The black eyed Peas came this way in 2007, thanks to Pepsi Co. and it was a wild time, partying with wil.i.am, Fergie and the rest of the crew at the this day events entre…
Starville concert: It was tagged the mother of all concerts. And the gig lived up to tis billing, in spite of three of the promised acts (ying yang twins, lil wayne and Sean Kingston) not showing up. Thanks to the events machinery of KISS events, and wonderful performances from Lil Kim, Brick&Lace, Amerie and a host of Nigerian crowd-pullers
Star megajam:The ‘biggest and brightest’ got even brighter this year with Kanye and T-Paine on the bill. With improved security, and a bona fide superstar like Kanye, it’s no surprise everyone headed to the polo club on December 14…
The experience: Who says chritians can’t have fun all night? The experience concert returned for the second year. And with Don Moen, Cece Winans, Mike aremu, and several others, it was a night of bliss at the TBS…
Hip hop world awards:The awards for hip hop culture, rap music and urbane sound entered its second year in 2007. with major sponsorship by MTN, and an ambition to make the best even better, the organisers moved the game several notches higher this year. Okay, maybe there were one or two goofs. But was the award worth the hype? Definitely yes! We’re waiting to see what happens in 2008.
Calabar music festival:The carnival is just about now entering its peak. But the people of Cross Rivers have shown they understand the power of entertainment…how long will it take for other states to take a cue?
West African idols:Early in the year, when we saw the avert for auditions, we didn’t know what we were in for. Now, months after, we’re still reeling with laughter each time we remember those goofs and fumbles on the show! Gladly, some true talents made the contest. And a Nigerian Timi Dakolo eventually won the top prize.
Celebrity takes 2: How long will it take for us to forget pasuma’s rib-cracking dance routines on Ceebrity takes 2? How long will it take to forget Omowunmi Akinnifesi’s sexy moves, or Funlola Aofiyebi’s ingenious routines? Forever! Thanks to Skye Bank and Spirit of David, TV viewers had something to look forward to for over two months…
TOP 12 SONGS OF 2007
Yahoozeey- Olu Maintain
See me so- 2face Idibia
Dem mama- Timaya
Do me- Psquare
Stylee- DJ Jimmy Jatt
Why me –D’Banj
Angel of my life- Paul play
Greenland- TY Bello
Ijoba Orun- Lara George
Ruggedy Baba -Ruggedman
Rock your party – D’Banj
TOP 12 ALBUMS OF 2007
FACE 2 FACE – 2face Idibia
INDEPENDENT – Faze
ASA – Asa
GREENLAND – TY Bello
DEFINITION – Dj Jimmy Jatt
THE RAPMAN BEGINS- Terry Th Rapman
MAINTAIN RELOADED – Olu Maintain
GAME OVER – Psquare
RUGGEDY BABA – Ruggedman
FIRST LADY – Sasha
LET THEM SAY – Nomoreloss
LONDON FEVER- African China
TOP 12 VIDEOS OF 2007
Do me – Psquare
Segemenge – KC Presh
Stylee- DJ Jimmy Jatt
Kpokpodikpo – Faze
Greenland – TY Bello
U know my P – Naeto C
Le Le – dekunle fuji
No be God? – Gino
Adara – Sasha
Lori le- X-Project
TOP 6 MUSIC TV SHOWS
STV Entertainment Weekly