The last century has seen a spike in the number of songs released daily but has also brought a sharp decline in what should “actually be called music”. Music as we know today has over the decades been a combination of both sound of instruments and accompanying words or lyrics. Lyrics ultimately are used to pass the message in a song, but today music is viewed by just the arrangement of sounds.
Bringing this to the Nigerian context, most youths in Nigeria today no longer enjoy the value of good lyrics but rather dance to tunes primarily inspired by drugs and alcoholism. They would rather listen to raspy voices on a set of “sinister percussion” other than pay attention to songs build on the foundation of pure desire for music and inspiration. Singers of the 60’s and 70’s such as Fela Anikulapo Ransome Kuti, Osadebe, Oliver De Coque all of blessed memory, King Sunny Ade, Onyeka Onwenu, Majek Fashek etc used their words at the accompaniment of good sound to pass messages of love, unity, patience and make citizens know their rights and worth, but musicians nowadays inspire lust for women, drugs, violence to name a few. They have become so accustomed to the get rich quick syndrome that they forget the ultimate goal of music. Music is meant to be for information and positive inspiration but what we see today is mere jamboree to please the limp urge for sex, drugs, ill gotten money, cultism etc
For example, musicians such as Wizkid, Burna Boy and Falz do similar type of music to the Legend Fela Anikulapo Ransome Kuti who was quite “notorious” but better to say “popular” for his regular critique of the government, but it is now widely said that Wizkid and Burna boy inherited the weed while Falz alone inherited the true spirit of music that was in him. This greatly boosts my claim that Nigerian youth no longer clamour for good message-full lyrics but crazy empty beats. Unfortunately, these new noise called music seem to get more airplay from radio and Television houses than purposeful songs. This has led to a downward spiral in the release of what should actually be called music by normal standards and with “songs” such as Soco, Science student and Codeine diet which have no meaning or message ruling the airwaves, one cannot help but wonder what the future holds for Nigeria in the music industry.
This menace can no longer continue for the sake of our children and we need to look for ways to bring back the trend of music with good lyrics. In our next issue, we will examine possible ways to reverse this awkward trend and how we can bring people back to the real knowledge what music should be by all standards positive and possible. Thanks for reading peeps.
This article was written by Albright Ehimze; connect with him on IG here