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Challenges that upcoming artistes face in Nigeria (part 2) (showbiz feature)

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By Ifeanyi Ndukwe

As earlier mentioned, the showbiz /entertainment industry is a multi-billion-naira business and has added to the GDP of Nigeria. Though, it has its hassles ranging from the upcoming artistes to the trending ones.

However, one of the challenges militating against the artiste is the royalty saga. Just like the signing in of a new football star, the newbie had to undergo several processes before the final endorsement deal. The record label takes its share, followed by the agent who saw the deal through. Then, you would consider the artist manager who would also partake in the cake before it reaches the artiste. At this stage, it might probably be a handy peanut handed down to him/her.

A good example of the scenario is seen in the defunct group, PSquare. Severally, it was alleged that one of the twins had complained that their manager and elder brother, Jude Okoye, always took the larger part of the deal while they had to make do with the little he gives them. This led to several internal fights among them. This, however, is considered as the remote cause of their breakup early last year.

As the case may be, you cannot but wonder why some producers and managers go the extra mile to avoid betrayal and defaulting especially on the part of the rookie. I would have been speaking based on assumptions but having experienced a hip-hop artist under my management who met a producer in an after-party event. Thrilled by his performance, he promised to sign him up on agreed terms and conditions. Though, the deal was a good amount to start with, looking at it from another perspective, it might, indeed, not be that good.

Below are some of the challenges faced by rookies in the industry

  • Finance: money makes the world go around. The artiste finds it difficult to find a sponsor who is willing to risk it all. Even when he does, the terms and conditions behind such sponsorship is likened to the saying, ‘’Monkey dey work, Baboon dey chop.’’ Thus, he willingly becomes his own sponsor cum singer.

Acceptance: have you ever been to an event where an upcoming performed? In the South East Nigeria when they perform, there is tendency the restive audience boos the fellow. You hear a loud word, ‘ko puo’ (leave the stage, in Igbo). Most average Nigerians find it hard to quickly show a sign of acceptance to a rookie. Such attitude may make the artist lose confidence and interest in furthering his musical career.

Record label signage: the choice of a recording company is a very sensitive one. Most labels have the capacity to manage as well as sponsor the artist but it is hard to come across a suitable one at the beginning. Just like John Maxwell wrote with the big caption,’’ Talent is not Enough.’’ It would require more than talent to push the artist forward.

Collaboration issues: this is another problem facing the upcoming artiste especially in Nigeria. In a bid to promote his work, the artiste may implore the partnership of an established act in the industry. This is a very special way to boost his popularity and increase admiring fans database. A good example is indigenous hip hop rap artiste, Chibuzor Azubuike aka Phyno Fino who went into collabo with a trending indigenous Yoruba rap artist, Olamide in the music track, ‘’Ghost Mode’’. The inclusion of Olamide made music fans take cognisance of the other art, Phyno Fino.



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