I once had a conversation with a a friend who brought up an interesting subject. He told me of how glad he was that Omah Lay came into the music scene.
I originally assumed it was because of the infectious and sultry sounds Omah Lay delivers, but when I asked why he felt that way about the young artiste, he responded; “because new hot artiste like Omah Lay will make our biggest singers, names like Wizkid and Davido sit up.”
At first I didn’t get it, largely because artistes like Wizkid and Davido have never really been caught slipping. Everything these guys do is a hit, back-to-back, but upon further explanation I got his point, albeit a point that is arguable.
He told me his belief is that; in the next 5 to 7 years, Davido and Wizkid, as well as most of the top dogs today will not be as relevant as they are now. Anyone that loves music understands this to be very probable, as even the biggest artistes that have dominated the face of the earth usually don’t peak past a decade or two.
To his point, within now and the next decade, the biggest artiste will be in fierce competition with guys who only seem to be on the rise, and to keep up, they will have no other choice than bring their A-game.
Granted, Omah Lay was not the only name he mentioned as Fireboy, Joeboy and Rema were also thrown into this conversation. And with these guys coming up, along with flexible label contracts and a sort of creative freedom that didn’t really exist when Wizkid and Davido were coming up, they are sure to produce hits that can compete for the airways with the best of them.
To my friend’s point, the hotter these new artistes get, the more details the bigger names will have to put into their projects to even compete. He also mentioned a split and diluted devotion in fan bases that he was beginning to notice. Fan bases who once thought that ‘X’ artiste is the ‘be all end all,’ now stans at least five other artistes who he/she splits their devotion, and of course their attention on.
Gone are the days when only three or two artistes dominated the entire airways in Nigeria. Now the talents are springing up left, right and center, and the competition for our attention is becoming fiercer.
To drive home his point, he noted that artistes who are known for delays and complacency with releasing their albums are now dropping, singles, albums and EP with more urgency.
With new acts like Omah Lay, stealing the hearts of millions right under their noses; they have no choice than to re-establish their dominance lest they become an after-thought in the mind of the audience.
Think about this for a second, Omah Lay and Yemi Alade both released a project Friday, and Omah Lay’s trend on twitter somehow managed to eclipse Yemi Alade.
Yemi Alade is no baby in the game, as she ranks amongst the top 5 or at least top ten musicians in the entire country, breaking incredible records. She is arguably the most beloved Nigerian singer across Africa, and Omah Lay trended higher and longer than her. That sends a message. No?
They both seem to be doing great on actual streams though.
Of course, the true winners in all of these are the fans, who get to enjoy the music styles of these amazing and talented singers. They are all clamoring for our attention, and we love it.
More music, more joy, and with the year we’ve had, our music superstars have done an exceptional job in spreading some good vibes.
For Chinedu Okafor, its all about making an impact with words, creating a profound impression on the audience with the intended narrative.