Why Nigerians Aren’t Celebrating Wizkid’s Phenomenal Achievement
Sometime in April, Nigeria was buzzing with the news that Drake released a single featuring Wizkid, actually, the track featured Wizkid and Kayla. But after playing the song, many Nigerians were disappointed to find out that Wizkid barely lent his vocals to the song. In fact, it is very easy to miss where Wizkid came in and left.
Since then, the song has gone on to become the biggest song of Drake’s career and Nigerians are not paying attention for a few reasons I am about to highlight here.
Firstly, a lot of people don’t know the reason why an artist would put a fellow singer’s name as a collaborator in the song. Being a recording artist myself, I know that there are a lot of processes involved in the making of a song other than vocals. The conceptualization, the production, the direction etc.
Later findings, reveal that Wizkid co-wrote and co-produced the song which is a very large contribution in the creatives. The first day I played the song I noticed the Afro beat drums, I would like to believe this is a part of Wizkid’s influence.
With that said, it should be noted that as big an artist as Drake was before this collaboration, he never had a billboard number one song. He has had previous number two spots but never a number one which is the most difficult feat for a hip hop artist to achieve. But as I write this, Drake’s one dance is sitting at number one spot on the Billboard chart.
Wizkid has put Afro Beat on the world map. If you check for the song on Wikipedia, you would see the word “Afro beat”. Since Fela passed on, we have been looking for a singer who would take Afro Beat to the mountain top and lend a voice to it that would resound in the world and make it a top genre of music like Bob Marley did with reggae. Femi Kuti the son of the late great, held down the forte to keep the genre alive and inspire interest in the young ones.
Then comes Wizzy, this talented young boy, a genius discovered by Banky W. His first album was an R and B album with Nigerian slang going the way of his boss. But somewhere on the journey, Wizkid did a song with Femi Kuti titled, “Jaiye Jaiye” (one of my favourites), and a revolution began. Now Wizkid is identified as an Afro Beat artist and this collaboration, is the biggest achievement of an afro beat artist so far.
Finally, the reason Nigerians are not celebrating this remarkable achievement for own local genre of music, is because they don’t know what it means for us and our music. I remember a lot of my friends telling me they don’t like Nigerian acts like Wizkid and they prefer foreign music just to sound classy; but now, it seems the foreign artists prefer to collaborate with our artists who we disclaim.
By Sammi Sikpojie