Why I shunned Lagos and relocated to Jos – Jeremiah Gyang
Admitted that Lagos is Nigeria’s cultural hub, with music flying at a high pace in the city, there are certain platforms of growth operators are yet to tidy up properly to make the entertainment industry a home for all talents. Contractual agreement is one such platform the industry is yet to get a grip on, with the result that a lot of talents end up getting the raw end of deals that derail them eventually.
Jos-based gospel musician, Jeremiah Gyang, is one artiste, who got the bitter end of a Lagos record label contract to his soar away song that launched him to limelight and had to beat a hasty retreat from Lagos to his native Jos to refocus his music. In a recent interview in Kaduna, where he headlined performance at a book festival, Gyang revealed that along the way, he got tired of trying to find favours in the industry, adding, “So I put the industry aside and I just focused on music and ever since my music has just been growing and improving.”
Although he admitted that Lagos is the bedrock of Nigerian music, Gyang, however, he is most creative and gets better music inspiration in his Northern part of the country, precisely Jos. “If you are not running things from Lagos it almost feels like you are not doing anything because Lagos is the place that evangelizes Nigeria music to all the world. However, there are so many people outside Lagos, who are doing so much but they are not recognised.”
Gyang has a new song, ‘African Child,’ which he said derived its concept from the war in Rwanda and neighbouring countries. Ironically, he would later face a similar war of ethnic cleansing in Jos.
“I never heard anything about war growing up,” he said. “I would hear about war in Rwanda and all those nations surrounding her. Then it used to make me really sad. I never knew I was going to see it myself one day but guess what, I saw it eventually. So, I wrote that song then for those African countries that were at war. I never knew I was prophesying what was about to happen to me.”
He expressed displease with recent calls for war and tribal divisions in the country. Said he plans on using his gospel music to preach against agitations for war and all forms of conflicts, adding, “I don’t know about other artistes, but I believe in the bible and I believe in righteousness.
I believe if you obey God and do his commandments, thousands will fall by your left and your right, but nothing would touch you. If you keep His commandments he will protect you and bless you.”
In spite of the new trend with musicians becoming music promoters as well, Gyang said he would keep improving his own brand of music, noting, “I am not an evangelist of the industry. I am an evangelist of my music. If people are looking for exposure, Lagos is where it is. I want to make good music; that’s all I am thinking about right now.”