Should Nigerian Entertainers do More with their Art to Educate us Better?

by Uche Onegeria 7 Nov , 2016  

Watch Flavour’s new music video, Obianuju for an example of how our entertainers now resort to sex and nudity to win fans.
This topic is a little bit against who I am, in that I try not to tell others what to do with their lives. If you want to become a stripper today, I do not care and will not judge you. The truth is that celebrities do not owe us anything. This is an issue I have reaffirmed in my blog Here. However, I also need some of them to think differently, especially with the dire  Nigerian economic situation and maybe inspire us to become better versions of ourselves.
So I sat down yesterday watching some Nollywood channel on my TV. When I flipped to some music video channel, I was hit in the face with songs like;
  • Under the blanket
  • Bank alert
  • Waist or Low waist or “ukwu”
  • Containers did this or that etc.

and of course sex, nudity, money and other silly things deemed to be mandatory to make music. If we had a checklist of what to include in songs, you have your items listed above.

Before you go saying, “It’s done in the western world as well”. I am well aware of that – I live there!! But do we have to follow them down not only into the light (as is expected) but also into the drain and gutter? Can we not find a balance; a little bit of this and that?

What a SEARCH for “Nigerian Music” produced. Source: Google

Also, which Nigerian community will you walk into today and find perfectly bodied bikini-clad ladies? How much of our own lives are reflected in what we see on Nigerian entertainment productions?

Which production is talking about the: incessant rape (even of underage girls), kidnapping, promoting some aspects of our culture and eradicating those which do not work, Boko Haram, gay rights, corruption, promoting education, the Biafran agitation, teaching Nigerian history, domestic violence, get-rich-or-die-trying culture? Oh, the only one we get right from that list is the “get-rich-or-die-trying” culture which is shoved into our faces with flashy cars, private jets and dollar bills raining on screen.

Hollywood celebrities united for another “We are the World” production to help raise funds for Haiti © WireImage.com

But when a pool of Nigerian musicians gather, it is boobies and booty galore!!And to be fair, many western acts also use their music to influence their world by speaking out against some form of injustice or the other or heavily backing an electoral candidate. Beyonce, Kendrick Lamar, and Meghan Trainor have spoken out about White on Black crimes and body shaming respectively. Sometimes, they also all come together to produce works with the aim of generating funds for the less privileged, some war-torn or disaster-affected country, or even some diseases like cancer, ALS etc.

Look, I admit that I am not a big fan of Nollywood. You can claim that I am not patriotic but in my defense, I really love making wise use of my time. Watching a bunch of half-naked women parade endlessly up and down for no reason, or some romantic scene that will take 10 minutes of my life or a widow who cries for 5 minutes of onscreen time is just a little bit too much for me to stomach. So I usually stay away.

2 months ago, my friends and I assembled to watch Genevieve’s “Road to Yesterday” and we all fell asleep. Please, do not ask me why. 

Another day at my friend’s place, I watched Nigerian music videos and Tekno Miles stood out to me because he usually does not feature other artists in his songs (which always turn out amazing by the way). His music is also usually devoid of nudity. It was a shocking observation, especially given that he is so young (23 years).I also watched a South African video showing the apartheid and some other historical events – I LOVED IT!! I asked my friend, “Why do Nigerian Musicians not show something like this to us. Something about the current Nigerian situation?”. And this birthed a valid discussion with my friend at which point he admitted, “It’s true! Most times, I put on the TV but I do not really watch them. The beat keeps me awake, while I get busy with other things around my house”

Fela Kuti’s Album cover art

Do not misunderstand me. I love Nigerian music. 98% of the time, it is what I listen to while I drive but our videos can show us a lot more about what is happening in the country than bums and ***s. In fact, I am going to a Bovi and Basketmouth comedy show which will be hosted in my city in Canada (so don’t sit down there and pass judgment on me – To each his own).

99% of what Nigerian Entertainment productions show is about BECOMING SUPER RICH!

(without telling our Youths “How”)

I understand some will sing about the perfect waist size on a woman, bank alert, and private jets but I hope there will be others who will teach us how to work hard to get these private jets while becoming better versions of ourselves thereby helping the country.

Even Fela Kuti with his half-naked dancers always had great messages in his lyrics.

#DropsMic

(Image header: Dailymail Ng)

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