This year, 2017, has been quite an interesting one for a number of Nigerian artistes and music lovers at large. From blooming careers, to major collaborations and awards, it has definitely been an eventful year.
The industry has witnessed some of Nigeria’s finest artistes get caught up in the web of controversies. It is almost impossible to recall the year without different feuds – called beefs – spicing up the industry. There was a carryover altercation between 2Baba and Blackface, both belonging to the defunct Plantashun Boyz.
Accusations of song theft were levelled on 2Baba, which he denied.
Eedris Abdulkareem has also made himself relevant by repeatedly throwing shots at his contemporaries and younger counterparts.
2017 didn’t just herald new talents, awards, and beefs, it witnessed engagements becoming weddings. Banky W and Adesua made major headlines with the hashtag #BAAD2017 which eventually became the most talked about wedding of 2017. Another wedding worthy of mention was that of Oritsefemi and his new bride which happened concurrently with Banky’s.
Award-winning Nigerian music diva, Yemi Alade, also hit a major milestone with over 70 million views on Youtube for her ground-breaking single “Johnny”. It became the most streamed music video in Nigeria.
We also watched rookies – upcoming artistes churning out chart-topping hits. Notable mentions are DMW’s Mayorkun, Effyzzie Music Group’s Geniuzz, Tinny Entertainment’s rapper, Bella Alubo, Nonso Amadi, Wilfresh among others.
This year also witnessed a new wave of alternative music that has been slowly gaining acceptance from music lovers and critics. The likes of Johnny Drille, Ric Hassani, Funbi, Nonso Amadi, Lady Donli, Tjan, Mac Roc, among others are currently championing the course in a way that makes 2018 promising.
We have also seen disappointing moments as some big names like M.I and Tekno promised full-length projects but never came through. Tekno however hit the internet when pictures of himself and Canadian rapper, Drake, surfaced online. The news of his meeting with the award-winning rapper is still sketchy but a collaboration is suspected to be in the works.
It wasn’t all disappointments as some titans saved the year. Wizkid’s “Sounds From The Other Side (SFTOS), Olamide’s “Lagos Nawa”, Falz’ “27”, Jesse Jagz’s “Odysseus” Yemi Alade’s “Black Magic”, Yung6ix “High Star”, Simi’s “Simisola”, among others made charts and trended for a while. But it was disappointing that Wizkid’s chart-topping album didn’t feature any of his Nigerian counterparts.
PREMIUM TIMES takes an in-depth look at the top stories that made headlines in 2017.
10. Davido And Wizkid Settled Supremacy Rift On Stage
It was a big night for music lovers as two of Nigeria’s most sought-after music exports, Wizkid and Davido, reconciled during the latter’s concert which held at the Eko Convention Center in Lagos on Sunday night.
The feud between the acts was a major subject of discourse on social media, but this last-minute surprise watered down every credible rumour. According to Wizkid, “I don’t dwell on things like that. Music is my focus, not rivalry. It’s all about making good music for me, and I believe that the sky is wide enough for all to fly’.
Early in December, Banky W waded into the ‘beef’; using the opportunity to congratulate Davido on his MOBO 2017 win.
He expressed how important Wizkid and Davido are to the industry and quoted a line from JAY Z’s ‘Family Feud’ off his 4:44 album to buttress his point: “What’s better than one superstar?” ( in Jay Z’s case he asked ‘What’s better than one billionaire? The answer is; ‘Two, especially if he’s from the same hue as you.” Banky also answered ‘Two.’
Both acts, sometimes regarded as the Messi and Ronaldo of the Nigerian music industry had independent successes in 2017 with major collaborations and awards credited to them. Music critics anticipate a collaboration between both acts in 2018.
9. Davido And Olamide Dominated Google Search Engine
The year has been quite a fulfilling one especially for DMW boss, Davido, as he dominated the charts for the most searched Nigerian songs in 2017.
Three of his songs, “If”, “Fall”, and “Fia” made the list of top five most searched songs on google. YBNL boss, Olamide also stole the shine as his late 2017 release hit “WO” claimed the number one spot to become the most searched song on google this year.
One of this year’s most controversial single by Patapaa Ft Ras Cann titled “One Corner” also made the list.
The song which many regarded as promoting sexual irresponsibility became one of the most played songs, especially in social gatherings.
Below is the List:
Olamide – WO
Davido – FIA
Davido – FALL
Patapaa Ft Ras Cann – One Corner
Davido – IF
8. 2Baba Backed Out Of A Nationwide Protest
In January, popular Nigerian artiste, Innocent Idibia, better known as 2Baba, solicited the support of well-meaning Nigerians as he planned a nationwide protest against President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.
2Baba took to his Instagram page to confirm that the protest will hold on February 5 thus; “A call for good governance. A call for urgent explanation into the reckless economic downturn nationwide. A call for nationwide protests as we say no to the executive, no to legislature, no to judiciary… You have all failed us”.
The much publicised planned protest caught the attention of Nigerians even from his industry colleagues as they registered their support for the movement.
But in a sudden twist of fate, 2Baba in February announced a cancellation of the planned protest scheduled to hold in Abuja, Lagos and other parts of the country.
He cited security concerns as a major factor for the cancelation.
“Dear Nigerians, after due consultations, it has become clear that the #OneNigeria protest scheduled to hold in Lagos and Abuja on Monday the 6th of February is under serious threat of hijack by interests not aligned with our ideals,” the multiple award winning musician said.
This however, did not go down well with his supporters which eventually saw him being called a coward. And when 2Baba called for another protest in December, as Nigerians suffered the unabating fuel scarcity; he was eventually shut down by Nigerians for obvious reasons.
7. Dammy Krane In Credit Card Scandal
In June this year, Nigerian afro-pop singer and former Hypertek Records act, Dammy Krane was embroiled in a controversial credit card scam which eventually led to his arrest in Miami, U.S.
He was charged with grand theft, credit card, and identity fraud.
The news of his arrest quickly filtered through the social media space with mixed reactions from music lovers, critics and industry colleagues.
To clear the insinuations and mixed feelings caused by the news, Dammy Krane’s mother, Elizabeth Adeola Oshodi, issued a statement in her son’s defence, saying:
“We thank God for His goodness and the great spirit of truth. He will have his day in court to clear his name. He will give his personal press release shortly. l, however, have decided to speak up against insinuations of fraudulency and grand theft. Dammy is a truly gentle and honest citizen of our planet and remains a good ambassador for not just the music industry, but Nigeria as a whole,” she said in the statement.
The embattled singer finally spoke up in a series of ambiguous tweets saying “See ehn… Understanding is a three-edged sword. Your side, my side, and the truth. Make dem talk” and “In weird situations like this, you go start to see, who is with you and who isn’t. No fake love,” he concluded.
6. Davido And The Mysterious Death of His Friend Tagbo
DMW boss, Davido, remains one of the most talked about artistes in 2017. His blooming career was met by a major obstacle when actress Caroline Danjuma, accused the artiste and his crew of having a hand in Tagbo’s death.
The Lagos police commissioner, Imohimi Edgal, told reporters that Close Circuit Television footages from the hospital proved that Tagbo was brought in dead by Davido’s escort driver, Tunde Usutu, and two of his (Davido) friends, Agbeje Olaoye and Idris Busari.
After staying mute for some time, the embattled singer finally spoke up in a statement to exonerate himself.
In the statement, Davido also claimed that Tagbo did not step a foot into his car at any time. Davido also went ahead to share three CCTV clips of his last moments with the deceased on the night of the unfortunate incident. After much investigations, the police said they had recovered the vehicle used in dumping Tagbo Umeike’s body from Davido’s house and he was again invited to the station for questioning as his first statement contradicted the outcome of police investigation.
Tagbo was eventually buried and Davido, the person of interest was reportedly cleared by the police of all charges. Davido later delved into the incident in one his 2017 bangers titled “FIA” where he took shots at Caroline Danjuma by crooning;“Caroline save your drama, I don’t need it for a soap opera”.
5. MI Abaga’s Rap Single Caused A Stir
Prolific Nigerian rapper and Chocolate City boss, MI Abaga, caused a stir when he released his highly controversial rap single titled “You Rappers Should Fix Up Your Life”.
The rap single which quickly went viral sparked off various reactions on social media with some for and others against the rapper. According to the award-winning rapper, Nigerian hip-hop was becoming weak and Nigerian rappers were being “killed” by the South; insinuating that South African rappers were taking centre stage.
Music critics threw shots at the rapper saying he was being a hypocrite and needed to fix up Chocolate City before accusing Nigerian rappers of not doing enough for the culture. The release of the single eventually triggered a few rappers churning out covers to the record. Worthy of mention are: Lord V, Rukus, N6, Blaqbonez and Payper. MI again made headlines when he granted an interview on “Loose Talk” which led to a heated altercation between him and music critic, Osagie Alonge.
4. Wizkid, Davido Won Big At 2017 MOBO Awards
Two of Nigeria’s finest music exports, Wizkid and Davido, won big at the 2017 MOBO (Music of Black Origin) Awards held at the First Direct Arena in Leeds, UK. While Davido edged out Wizkid, Mr Eazi, Tiwa Savage, Wande Coal, Maleek Berry, others to pitch the “Best African Act” award, Wizkid won the highly coveted “Best International Artist” award beating music giants like Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar, Cardi B, DJ Khaled, Drake, Migos, SZA, Solange Knowles and Travis Scott.
The giant stride by both acts saw a pool of congratulatory messages pouring out from Nigerians from all works of life including a former Nigerian President, Goodluck Jonathan, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and a senator, Ben Bruce.
3. Burna Boy vs Mr. 2Kay: How It Happened
In October, PREMIUM TIMES reported how singer, Abiye David Jumbo, popularly known as Mr. 2Kay, was reportedly robbed at gun point in his hotel room at Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.
According to PR Consultant, Sakpaide Ogaga, the singer was in the room “with a friend and struggled with one of the robbers, as the others punched and hit him with a gun, repeatedly warning that they will shoot if he doesn’t calm down.”
The police later invited dancehall star, Burna Boy, over his alleged involvement in the robbery of singer, Mr 2Kay.
Speaking at a press briefing in Lagos, the State Acting Police Commissioner, Edgal Imohimi said that the robbers were alleged to have received a part payment of N50,000 from Burna Boy before the robbery, and another N50,000 after the robbery.
He said, “Four armed robbers carried out the attack and detectives were able to arrest one of their girlfriends identified as ‘Matejero’. This led to the capture of the others.
“During interrogation, the robbers confessed that they were hired by Burna Boy through his manager, Joel Kantiock, who was arrested in Zaria, Kaduna State.”
Burna Boy eventually turned himself in to the police after being declared wanted by the Lagos State Police Command for two months. In 2016, Burna Boy announced that he would be visiting the UK after the ban placed on him was lifted for his involvement in an alleged crime.
2. #BAAD2017: Banky W And Adesua Utomi’s Glamorous Wedding
Nigerian singer, Bankole Wellington, popularly known as Banky W, and his wife, Adesua Etomi, broke the internet this year with the announcement of their engagement and subsequently their wedding.
Their traditional wedding which was the talk of social media trended with the hashtag #BAAD2017. It had in attendance friends, associates and celebrities including Bovi, Basket Mouth, Kemi Adetiba, Tunde Demuren, Chigul, Lynxx, Juliet Ibrahim, M.I Abaga,Dotun Kayode, Toolz, Tolu Oniru, Linda Ejiofor, Sola Sobowale, among others.
The nuptial tie came shortly after Banky W successfully had a third surgery for skin cancer. Their engagement which was initially perceived as a publicity stunt was officially announced by Banky W in February. The couple then proceeded to Cape Town, South Africa for a high-profile ceremony.
Banky W however sparked social media outrage over a video he erroneously uploaded on the Internet which showed his new wife, Adesua, in a compromising situation.The video Banky W posted on the Internet revealed the buttocks of his wife. As usual,social media went into an instant frenzy.
1. P Square Break Up Again
The breakup story of one of Nigeria’s most admired music duo, P Square, remains one hard pill to swallow, especially for fans and music lovers.
The breakup which many perceived as a PR stunt quickly went viral when a video of Paul and Peter Okoye of P-Square, along with their brother/manager Jude Okoye engaged in a scuffle at their lawyer’s office, surfaced online. In the viral video, Jude was seen and heard threatening to beat up Peter, who was behind the camera.
The altercation which further confirmed the feud triggered a reaction and statement from Peter Okoye (now called Mr P). Peter confirmed the sad development, saying; “Psquare is no more. I have nothing against my brothers. I saw Paul’s post on Instagram about blood being thicker than water.” And Peter asked, “Who is water and who is blood?” He added that his nuclear family (wife and kids) are very important to him and has decided to move on with his personal brand – Mr P.
The soaring turn of events, however, led to the embattled brothers putting their popular ‘Squareville’ mansion in Lagos, up for sale.
They are currently pursuing solo music careers. While Peter has moved on as Mr P, Paul on the other hand is now known by his new moniker, Rudeboy.
Last year, the duo had a similar occurrence of an ugly breakup. But their union was eventually salvaged which saw them put out their 2016 banger titled “Bank Alert”. Though regretted, it is hoped that a change of heart can bring the brothers back on their duo, Psquare platform.