After four seasons of the Big Brother Naija reality TV spectacle and 15 housemates that are at the very least self-described music hopefuls, you slowly start to see a pattern, howbeit unclear.
If my count isn’t burdened by imperfect arithmetic or a flawed memory, we have had 15 ‘music-based’ contestants introduced into the Big Brother Naija house with fast-rising music star Laycon being the latest.
Reality TV shows have always attracted spotlight grabbing careers from models to media personalities, songwriters to social media influencers; but employing it as a direct, go-to strategy to guarantee commercial success is an approach that can only be described as an unexpected by-product of the objective of the reality show franchise itself.
Take the BB Naija reality TV show franchise for instance. Uriel, Efe, Bisola, Ella, Debbie Rise, Coco-Ice, Teddy A. Rico Swavey, K. Brule, Elozonam, Avala, John Oga, Vee, Tochi and Laycon are all housemates introduced as musicians on entering the BB Naija house, even though many on losing out on the prize, promptly switched to more open-ended and flexible titles.
The aforementioned number suggests that many of them only saw the reality show as a ticket to launch their music careers and with good reason.
With countless hours of viewing time and a guaranteed national fanbase all through the 3 months lifespan of the game (if you are lucky to survive that long), who wouldn’t want that level of massive publicity, all free of charge.
The question is, should emerging music artists or their record labels be consciously fashioning BB Naija into their overall ‘blowing’ strategy or is that too unpredictable to be a plan?
A quick analysis of a cross section of the ‘music-passionate’ housemates who didn’t stray from their music paths, regardless of not winning the BB Naija prize and you will realize that the outcome is not so encouraging. The once vibrant flame of their emerging music careers that threatened to pick up in the wake of their new found celebrity status, weeks after and without warning, fluttered and died.
The activity curve of many of these ‘artistes’ have flatlined overtime and remained so regardless of newer versions of the viral TV reality show.
Even Efe, who surprisingly is the only music artiste housemate that has actually won the reality show, enjoyed only a brief success timeline with his single ‘Warri.’ His subsequent attempts at dropping new music singles didn’t quite receive the expected buzz.
Is it that BB Naija music artistes are not successfully harnessing the viral status that they were handed when they came out of the Big Brother Naija house, or is reality TV recognition not a just a foolproof method of acquiring a following for a music head?
A number of people across the globe are rooting for another music head in the ongoing BB Naija season 5 house, and from his impressive body of work pre-BB Naija, Laycon looks like he might be the one to break the jinx and give us a Nigerian music superstar from a non-music reality TV show.
This article was written by Henri ‘Yire; connect on Instagram with him here