In the course of the week, I had a cause to disagree with some stalwarts in the entertainment industry over attempts to denigrate the artistes billed to perform at this year’s Radio and Television Personality (RTP) Awards.
Primarily, the arguments are that the artistes, Ebony Reigns, KurlSongx, Patience Nyarko and “One Corner” hit maker Patapaa were not worthy to perform for His Excellency the Vice President of Ghana, who had been advertised by the award organisers as Special Guest.
Then industry watchers joined the fray, drawing their own conclusions, many attributing the Vice President’s absence to Patapaa and Ebony in particular, acts they consider not worthy to perform for the Vice.
“You can’t bring the Veep and have performances from Patapaa and co,” was a notable comment on the post by the Aide to the Veep. Mel Kwasi Davis, a key industry player, by implication was “upset.” He believes the Veep deserved better. Really? In a Facebook post, I called for an apology for denigrating the acts. Something he is yet to do.
Unfortunately, there were many on social media who thought along the lines of Mel. That the Veep is “sanctimonious” to the extent of not seeing an Ebony, Patapaa or KurlSongx performance? Is that the logic? Then he has no business being a public officer? And by extension belittling the acts and the organisers of the Awards, giving them less credit into not knowing how, when and what to do at specific occasions?
Patapaa’s “One Corner” may come with some coarseness as far as the many challenges on social media are concerned, but does that apply to the artiste? Is Ebony’s team that daft to replicate a University Hall Week performance at a corporate event? And what about KurlSongx and Patience Nyarko?
If it’s about decency, what don’t we say about the Ambolleys and Lumbas performing to Presidents. Seen Daddy Lumba’s recent performance at the Global Media Alliance organised African Legends Night? You saw his dancers? And you know the target of that event, right?
That’s the hypocrisy we live with! If it’s not us, it’s not right!
Artistes of Straw?
That “the artistes on the RTP bill aren’t top artistes hence the Veep deserved better” theory is to say the least thrash! Even laughable is the suggestion that only the likes of Jay Z are those who perform for the Presidents of the United States. Risible.
Who are those A-list artistes who deserve to perform for the Vice President? Patapaa, Ebony, KurlSongx and Patience Nyarko – someone tell me, in our “everything popular” industry of ours, aren’t these artistes among those leading the pack?
Patapaa, with just one known song, and within some few months is a household name. Like him, loathe him, his name is out there.
Is Patience Nyarko not a Gospel Artiste of the Year contender in the upcoming Ghana Music Awards? Mention gospel artistes with banging songs this year, and her “Atigya” and “Eboboba” songs will beckon you. Solid artiste par excellence!
KurlSongx has had his breakthrough. As a new act he has been able to maintain his name, and he is not unnoticed in the industry. His featuring of Sarkodie on two of his popular songs, the ever controversial “Jennifer Lomotey” and “Whistle” has shot him to light. Why can’t such an act perform for the Veep?
Oh yea, Ebony! Many industry watchers have touted her as the biggest female act in Ghana today. Her momentum is unparalleled. Her songs are extremely popular; and she has an overwhelming popular appeal. Many are those who believe she will be the first female to win Artiste of the Year in the Ghana Music Awards.
What happened to ‘Helping the young Acts’ Mantra?
The above question is what I throw out there to the critics. We all complain Ghana’s music industry operates a mostly “One, Two Top Formula,” where just few musicians get the attention of event organisers. The rest are all side-lined. And starvation becomes their portion, while the few get all the gigs.
Sadly, these naysayers are those chastising the seemingly “unknown” acts billed to perform at the RTP Awards? What happened to helping the young acts?
Take it or leave it, the RTP Awards is one of the most anticipated events in the country. And to have such young talents grace the occasion, is commendable. It is the way to go, provided these acts aren’t taken advantage of.
That won’t happen anyway. The artistes, safe Patapaa, have solid team behind them who know the ins and outs of the industry.
Caving in before Politicians
The entertainment industry in Ghana has a bright future. Talents abound. Artiste are doing their bit to survive and compete, in spite of the shambolic legal structures in place.
This is where we need not play to the gallery when we meet politicians. They are mandated to help implement policies that make operating in the industry favourably. But what do we see?
As in the case of the Aide to the Veep, he makes a post that dissociates the Veep from the awards and then industry watchers just jumped on his post and rather blacklist the industry, denigrate the acts on the bill and rubbish the industry.
And we expect the politicians to respect us? Not any time soon!
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