We seem to not know the power of now. As Nigerians, we fail to take into cognizance, the weight of our current moment, what the present means, and how it might affect the future. As we live in real-time, in a pacey world where hyper-information is the norm, and change happens in seconds, much of ourselves and our work is in flux.
The great part about all of this is that, never in the history of Nigeria have we been able to have so much of our history recorded. From social media clips to digital magazines and websites, we are generating and storing various aspects of our culture. This provides us and future generations with the ability to make informed decisions, based on analysis of data and how we interpret them.
For music, one of the benefits of this is that we are able to decide the rating system for our artists. Who is the greatest of this era? Who has attained legendary status? What is the most remarkable contribution of an artist to the culture? And how can we use all of this data to grow our music? The future belongs to this format, and we are all on the path to fully digital izing the way we enjoy, feel, and process music.
Davido’s ’30 Billion Concert’ which held in December 2018, with sponsorship from First Bank, was a clear example of how we can enjoy, document and file the culture away for future use. Generations after us will point back to that concert and all its attendant entertainment, drama and reviews as a yardstick in judging how relevant Davido was to the culture.
But that will not be all they will see.
Long before First Bank threw their money on ensuring that OBO made live music, he had done the legwork for it. A year of recovery and smashing of records, Davido clearly bodied every Nigerian artist who was active in that year. Via hard work, smart decisions and more, he pushed past man barriers, putting his career back on track after the disappointment of 2016. That concert was just a culmination of all that work.
But one banner year isn’t enough. When our kids and their kids need to consult history, and mine today’s work for achievements and academic purposes, they will be impressed. OBO has had a great time at this music thing. He’s done a lot in terms of influence, fandom, and hits. But his discography is a bit too bare at the moment. People will see all the greatness, all the shows killed, the money earned, and the glory enjoyed. They will also have to make inference on the music and seek out whole projects to analyse his greatness.
The limitations of accessing old material that we sometimes struggle with, will not be a struggle for our kids. This generation has ensured that we provided all our progeny with the tools to enjoy the music and rate the artists better. It’s an ongoing process, one that involves both the creators and the fans, and documented by the streaming and news platforms.
If OBO can replicate the success of 2017, and maintain that high level of achievement and performance for 10 years, his would be a legacy that would stand tall for the future. As to what part and rank he belongs, He’s currently writing it.
Here’s to a better year.