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2017 in retrospect… Naija showbiz in highlights

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For some artistes the year 2017 will go down as an eventful one, while for some others it was not. As the curtains for the year draw to a close, several activities happened on the showbiz scene that made the year to be a spectacular one.

With few days to the close the year, let’s take look at some of the major issues that shaped the year on the showbiz scene.

From AFRIMA To The World…The Big Wins
No doubt to the fact, it was Starboy Records artiste and head honcho, Wizkid’s year, as he made Nigeria proud at the 2017 Music of Black Origin (MOBO) award that held at the First Direct Arena in Leeds, United Kingdom.

He brought home the ‘Best International Act’ ahead of America superstars and music heavyweights, Jay-Z, Cardi B, Solange Knowles, Kendrick Lamar, SZA, Travis Scott, Migos and DJ Khaled, who were nominated in the category.

The Ojuelegba crooner is not a new comer to the awards as his first shot at the MOBO in 2012 fetched him the Best African Act. From that time to date, he has been nominated five times (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017) and won three — twice as Best African Act (2012 and 2016) and the latest being Best International Act.

Baba Nla as he fondly calls himself was the cynosure of eyes as he won big at the All Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA) in Lagos. He clinched three major awards: ‘Best West African Artiste’, ‘The Song of the Year’ and ‘Artiste of the Year’, trumping contenders like Davido, Runtown, Tekno and others.

Wizkid was not only one that made Nigeria proud at the MOBO awards. Also, self-proclaimed Omo Baba Olowo (O.B.O), David Adeleke well known as Davido clinched the ‘Best African Act’, trumping other contenders to the award like Maleek Berry, Sarkodie, Juls, Tekno and arch rival, Wizkid

For flying high the nation’s flag, Wizkid and Davido got President Muhammadu Buhari’s commendation. Buhari in a statement signed by his Special Adviser on media and publicity, Femi Adesina, joined the teeming fans of the artistes in Nigeria and all over the world to celebrate the well-deserved and meritorious recognition.

The president in the statement affirmed that both singers have showcased the rich talents in the country, and brought pride to the nation through their many songs and performances, commending their dedication, hard work and charity works.

Also commending them for their exploit was Vice President Yemi Osinbajo was full of praise for their talent, entrepreneurship, and hardwork. He also commended them for making Nigerians proud.

“Once again the talents, hard work, and enterprise of our youth have been celebrated on the world stage. Congratulations to @wizkidayo and @iam¬_Davido. You make us proud,” Osinbajo said.  

Former President, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, joined the euphoria as he took to his Facebook page to share a congratulatory message to the superstars. “When Nigeria does well, I cannot help but feel well. My happiness is tied to the happiness of Nigeria and when Nigerians break records and take the name of Nigeria to greater heights it exhilarates me.

“Thank you Wizkid for raising Nigeria’s flag high for the positive, not the negative. Your emergence as the Best International Act at the #MOBOAwards is a proud moment for Nigeria. And the fact that you emerged over Jay-Z and Drake makes it even more celebratory. Well done. GEJ,” he wrote.

Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar in a congratulatory message via his official Twitter handle, also hailed both acts for winning big at the awards. “My young friend, Wizkid @wizkidayo beat other big international artists to win one of the world’s biggest music awards. Congratulations! I hear young David O won too, very good day for Nigeria,” he wrote.

Like the year was made for them, Wizkid and Davido also won big at the 12th edition of The Future Africa Awards (TFAA), which held in Lagos. While Wizkid carted home ‘Young Person of The Year’. Davido won ‘Musician of The Year’.

Wizkid edge out strong contenders such as Mary Njoku, Amaka Osakwe, Iyin Aboyeji and fellow music star, Adekunle Gold to walk home with the prestigious award. Davido on his part emerged top in the music category defeating artistes like Tekno, Kiss Daniel, Adekunle Gold, and Simi.

The Beefs, The Fights
When will the beef between Nigeria’s biggest stars stop? It was a year of beef and war among artistes, who were in the news in the year for fighting online, shading themselves and straight up beef. These famous people entertained us on social media with so much drama.

Okoye Brothers (P-Square)
This was the biggest celebrity fight of the year 2017. Unlike the previous years when the twin brothers had their rift and nobody knew what they were fighting about, this year saw them wash their dirty linens in public.

When they released their hit tracks, Bank Alert and Nobody Ugly, many of their fans across the globe heaved sighs of relief. To observers, the fact that they had come together to work in the studio and release new songs meant that they had put behind their years-old rift. How wrong they were!

It all started with shade comments on Instagram from Paul Okoye who started talking about someone not happy about the birth of his twin babies. This sparked what became a full-fledged fight with both brothers calling each other out on social media. Peter on his part took his Instagram page, informed fans that the brothers would no longer be performing at some concerts, which they had earlier been booked for.

With Paul and their elder brother, Jude Engees on the one hand, and Peter on the other hand, the fight became intense with the release of a video that went viral where the brothers were seen hauling abusive words on each other and almost getting physical in their lawyer’s office.

Peter has repeatedly stated that the group needs a new manager, as he is no longer comfortable with Jude as their manager. But Paul wants Jude to continue as their handler; hence the bad blood between them. Jude is also said not to accord Peter’s wife, Lola, with the necessary respect, which infuriates her husband.

For the most part of 2015 and 2016, the multi-award winning singing duo did not release any song and did not perform at any concert as a result of their feud. They at different times went on social media to denounce one another, with many of their fans pleading with them to bury the hatchet.

At the height of the crisis, Paul recorded a song, Call Heaven, insinuating that if their mother, who used to be their manager, was alive, the crisis wouldn’t have degenerated to the level it did.

Both brothers have moved on to establish their individual record labels. While Peter signed Malcolm and DJ Switch to his P-Classic Records, Paul invested a lot of effort in promoting the careers of Muno and Lucy, the new acts signed to his Rudeboy Records.

Following the crisis, the twin brothers lost a lot of brand equity but they were lucky when they made up and put out songs that became hits, which got the fans massive acceptability.

Burna Boy vs Mr 2Kay
When the news of dancehall singer, Damini Ogulu popularly known as Burna Boy involvement in the robbery and attack on another singer, Mr. 2Kay broke, not many believed there was even a feud in the first place. But as things unravelled people began to pay attention to the bizarre story.

Mr. 2Kay was robbed and assaulted after performing at 2Face Idibia’s Buckwyld n Breathless that held at the Eko Hotel & Suites Lagos in October in his room at the same facility. Most of his possessions were taken from him and was left with bruises. The Police upon investigating the incident arrested four suspects, who mentioned Burna Boy as the brain behind the attack.

Crisis between both entertainers started when Mr 2Kay called out Burna boy for saying derogatory statements against Nigerian pastors in an interview with Hip TV. This Burna Boy did not take it likely with Mr 2Kay as he sent him a message on Twitter threatening to deal with him. “You better have that energy when I come for you because I’m coming for you,” Burna Boy allegedly threatened.

Few days after, Mr. 2Kay was attacked. The police then declared Burna boy wanted for allegedly ordering the assault and robbery of Mr. 2Kay.

Wizkid vs Davido
It is not a secret that Wizkid and Davido do not like each other, but still, they are not known to express their emotions through physical fights. 2017 started on a rather quiet note for both stars drama wise but by middle of the year things got pretty serious.

Davido took a jab at Wizkid’s choice of sounds on his international EP Sounds From The Other Side. Wizkid replied and Davido dropped a sub for him on the track Summer Body featuring Olamide.

Wizkid would then go ahead to call Davido ‘frog face’, a diss at his husky voice. The two would continue to clash online till the One Music Africa Fest in Dubai, where the crews of both acts clashed.

The news about both singers’ fight at the backstage of the show was a very shocking one! According to a version of the story, the fight was said to have been caused by Tekno and Wizkid`s manager, Sunday Are. It was gathered that Tekno after performance on the stage, came to Wizkid`s camp to greet him, but was pushed away by Sunday Are, which erupted in a fight backstage.

Both singers appeared to have sheath the feuding swords as they joint performed the song Manya at Davido’s #30Billion Concert that held last Wednesday at the Eko Hotels & Suites Lagos.

Eedris Abdulkareem vs Timaya
Nigeria Jagajaga crooner, Eedris Abdulkareem was in his element this year. He took shots at everyone from Mr. Eazi to Davido, 2face Idibia, D’banj and Timaya. He, however, met his match with the Ogologo , his former backup act.

He had in a chat with Goldmyne TV blasted Accra to Lagos singer and Aye crooner for some of their recent actions. He went Mr. Eazi’s jugular for saying he brought the ‘Ghanaian sound’ to Nigeria and Davido for his attack on Ovation Magazine publisher, Dele Momodu.

During the interview he called out Timaya, saying he is ingrate who forgot his roots. “He wouldn’t have been that successful if he doesn’t have that level of confidence I gave him. It’s as simple as that… He was a singer he wanted to be like 2face, but if you check him he’s doing reggae, right?”

Timaya not having any of Eedris’ rants took to his Instagram page to post a video to counter the statement made by Eedris to berated some Nigerian artistes. In the video, Timaya called him out, calling him a ‘dirty igbo (hemp) smoker’ amongst other nasty things.

“I tried so hard to resist responding to an EMPTY BARREL…But I am sick and tired of all this misconceptions…Sometimes you just need to tell people the HARD TRUTH. FUCK U EEDRIS ABDÜLKARİM,” he wrote on the video caption.

Also, in another interview with The Sun Newspaper, the former Remedies and Kennis Music rapper, claimed he was a crucial factor to the success of artistes like Timaya and KC Presh. “Timaya and KC Presh are my boys. My record label, La Kreem Entertainment, did so much for many artistes including Timaya and KC Presh. They were under my label but we didn’t sign any contract. We did what I will call ‘gentle man deal’ whereby we consulted for the artistes and took them to Baba Keke (Kenny Ogungbe).”

“Timaya was under me and stayed with me for four good years. I told him to go back to Bayelsa State and research on the history of his people and do a song about them, which he did. You know, he has never told the media that he was my boy and lived with me for four good years. I showed him the way forward and he learnt many things from me. Those days I did everything possible to push acts like Timaya among a host of others up and comers. Timaya was my boy, he was brought to me from the street and I showed him how to be successful even though he praises himself in most of his songs now. He is a graduate of La Kreem Records; it is not easy being a La Kreem Records graduate,” he said.

Kcee vs Harrysong
The feud between Five Star Music act and Okpekete singer Kinglsey Okonkwo well known as Kcee and his former record mate now head honcho AlterPlate Records, Harrison Tare Okiri also known as Harrysong or Mr. Songs, didn’t start in 2017 but it grew bigger and widened this year.

While many thought the war between both parties was over following what maybe called a cosmetic peace at the Headies Awards 2016 that held at the Eko Hotel, the fight was reignited at the beginning of the year.

Five Star Music in January arrested and took to court the Reggae Blues crooner for alleged breach of contract. Harrysong and the label had acrimoniously been embroiled in cold war since November 2016.

In February, news went round that Five Star Music again arrested Samankwe singer along with his Alterplate manager, Desmond Ike on criminal charges involving fraud, forgery and impersonation. With the intervention of Galala master, Daddy Showkey, the matter was however settled out of court.

According to sources, Harrysong’s contract with Five Star Music is still till 2019, but the singer claimed to have exhausted his contract; hence, due to the under-appreciation and operating from a position of weakness, he left the label.

The fight was extended to Harrysong’s crew, as his Manager, Desmond Ike and Bishop were beaten by Kcee’s crew members led by former manager, Soso Soberekun at Nigeria Football Federation’s (NFF) president birthday party that held at Parkview Estate Ikoyi, Lagos.

Following Soberekun’s departure from the label, Kcee in June filled filed a lawsuit against him and Harrysong, demanding for the enforcement of his ‘fundamental rights’.

Not done with label, the Arabanko crooner while performing on stage at the Warri Mega Fiesta called out the Limpopo singer and his brother, E-Money, for trying to ruin his career.

With peaceful resolution not near in sight, it is obvious that neither of the warring parties is ready to bury the hatchet.

Dammy Krane vs Tekno, Orezi
It was indeed an eventful for the singer, Dammy Krane, from his arrest in the United States of America over credit card fraud to having a rift with a number of his colleagues in the music industry.

For observers, the singer’s rift with Tekno was somewhat a confusing rift as it initially felt like Dammy Krane had issues with Orezi but later said he wasn’t referring to him, rather he was talking to Tekno. Taking to his Twitter page, he called out Tekno, using the name music star. 

Responding, Tekno, also to his Twitter handle TEKNOOFFICIAL @ alhajitkno, wrote: “You do so much stupid shit is so hard to support you!” This sparked off a back and forth name calling and shading on social media platform.

In another development, Orezi had released a photo of himself with a new look and captioned it ‘and they say the hair is not fine! Warning: Thou shall not copy especially all you Nigerian Artist’.

Dammy Krane in reaction took call out Orezi in a Snapchat video, saying Orezi is an idiot with no life for saying artists shouldn’t copy his new hairstyle. But in a hilarious response, Orezi made a short diss video using Dammy Krane’s song Amin as he prays for him saying, ‘hits fall on you sense fall on you’.

M.I. vs N6
It was war of words between Cool FM OAP/rapper, N6 and Chocolate City act/Africa Rapper No. 1 crooner, M.I. Abaga, when the later released the single, You rappers should fix up your lives, a song that saw him slamming all Nigerian rappers for allowing South African rappers dominate the rap scene in Africa.

The bone of contention was the point M.I raised in the song, which had ripple effect and didn’t go down well with many artistes, especially rappers in the country. Rappers and critics alike did not stopped talking about the points raised in the single where he admonished rappers to do better for the hip hop industry. N6 could not keep his disdain for the track as he replied M.I. with a diss track.

Just when we all thought what seemed like beef had ended, both rappers again call each other out. It was more like a Twitter fight as they kept on insulting and exchanging words to the surprise of their fans. Just like any fight, they both had their moments and fans who stood behind them.


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