The second Friday of the year followed the template of the first: No new music. A boring day lacking novelty lied ahead. But there was a contrast, Wizkid had picked January 8th as the date for the release of the visuals to Ginger, one of the smash hits from his epoch-making album, Made In Lagos.
As anticipation swelled for the release, people created fantasies on how the video might turn out. With Wizkid giving an insight into the template for his music video in an interview with Beat FM London, expectations on Friday were thus high. Hours preceding the release, Wizkid FC were already doing their thing. Hashtag GingerVideoPremiere nestled at the top of Nigerian Twitter Trends.
Then at 3pm, the video dropped. Did it satisfy expectations?
Maybe. But boring was the word said by most people after watching. No exciting plot. Engaging storyline missing. Nothing surprising about the video. It simply slotted into “Nigerian music videos with vibes.” This category is created for unmemorable music videos; music enthusiasts watch once and never go back to. In one word: forgettable.
Of course, the visuals for Smile, one of the singles off Made In Lagos can’t be found in this category. It’s easily the best video Nigerian music industry saw last year. Why’s Ginger different?
For a long time, songs have always tried to tell some sort of story in their lyrics even if the message or story isn’t the greatest ever. Music videos therefore serve as interpretation to the songs, helping the listeners make meaning of the lyrics.
Fact, people have argued Ginger itself doesn’t have a storyline compared to Smile in terms of lyrical content and thus, this might be the befitting video Ginger could have gotten. But you wonder why Wizkid was lyrically serenading an unknown love interest in the first verse: “Make I touch up on it/Make I rub, make I love, make I rub, make I touch up on it.” This exact serenade is missing in that video. Plus the eventual disconnect of the lyrics and music video is evident with the lead dancer being left alone to do some seductive body whining.
As Monika, a music journalist said in an article, “Great visuals are so hard to find these days. So much of what is produced in my opinion, is cheap and lazy.” And here, the video for Ginger sadly embodies that statement. For the biggest and most streamed song in the wonder of such melodious, ear-wormy and near-perfect album, a memorable visual should symbolize this track.
It’s therefore berating yet surprising to see such a bland video for Ginger. Perhaps I and a cluster of people expected a sensual, romance-leaning video or as someone said, “a video with a happy ending.” Because, what’s the use of “freaky-freaky” in the lyrics?
Or maybe we wanted the video to be cloaked in a similar storyline as Cardi B’s WAP or even invoke the nostalgia of his 2018 hit, Fever which erupted in a nationwide controversy.
But then, Wizkid had other plans.
This article was written by Olabode Otolorin; connect on Instagram with him here