Music Business

Does D’Banj have an Inferiority Complex and is his Brand Dead? Journalist Azuka Ogujiuba Wants to Know.

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D'Banj Amber RoseI have always wondered why the average Nigerian entertainment celebrity talent throws a temper tantrum when a writer or Journalist they deem a “friend” writes articles they are unhappy with.

With Azuka Ogujiuba’s article, who is a Journalist/Writer for ThisDay Newspaper, I now believe I understand why.

Some of these celebrity talents do in fact have rather personal intimate relationships with the journalist/writer, so much so there is in fact an expectation that such a writer will not write about the talent. Arguably, if the journalist is that entangled with the talent, such expectation by the talent is reasonable. Also, at a minimum, a disclaimer needs to accompany the articles written.

Also, in what capacity is information that is ultimately shared with the public acquired?

I still do not believe that just because a celebrity talent is a “friend” of a journalist/writer, the writer should forego reporting news about that talent; especially where the public has a right to know or the information is of public concern.

Ogujiuba writes an expose type article that chronicles the history of D’Banj and Don Jazzy’s career and also questions the way D’banj celebrated his 10th year anniversary. As I read her article, I couldn’t help but notice how she was too close for comfort, in my view, in her role as a Journalist, especially given she now pens the article she does.

I do think she raises interesting points as to how D’Banj chose to celebrate his ten years anniversary in the industry…but I’d like to hear what you have to say.

In general, at this point, I am concerned for D’Banj. In fact, let me just call what I am feeling and thinking about his music career as an artist. I think if the focus continues to be on everything but his music, it won’t be too long when in fact his career as an artist is/will be over. This does not mean he will not continue to have a career in the music industry. It just means his days as an artist will be over meaning there are opportunities for him as a label executive, in real estate, television/film and other areas. Obviously those options are not bad and arguably is inevitable. However, the trick is how he uses his current music career to strategically position himself and plan for a future doing everything but music.

-Uduak

Read excerpts from Ogujiuba’s  article.

“…On the other side, Kachukwu was investing heavily on them financially. He spent money buying them exotic cars like the BMW Dbanj and Jazzy rode to my house, can’t remember what year but it was so low to the ground and looks like a racing car, pardon me, lam not into cars. He loved this duo that later metamorphosed to Mo’hits. Authoritatively, I can tell that he financed their first trip to America. He made sure he introduced them to all his rich friends who invited them for gigs and paid them heavily to perform, as the Mo’hits grew in fortune and fan base, they gradually started manifesting their ‘true colours’. Now, permit me to rest the innuendos. I could help people grow without desecrating the fine ethos of journalism.

I discern the lines whenever I inch towards them. Finally, we fell out when l did a critic on Koko Mansion which l felt was a debasement to womanhood. And D’banj was billed to perform at Genevive Pink ball but did not. l was there and wrote about it. When it was published, understandably, hell was let loose. Immediately, Dbanj and Don Jazzy stopped taking my calls. By the way, it still beats me that anything under the sun would be powerful enough to tear Don Jazzy and D’banj apart…”

“Jimmie of Beat FM: A Saving Grace

Jimmie Akinsola, He anchors sports extra on Beat FM. It probably won’t suffice for D’banj to just hand the MC his fee, he should appreciate him specially. The first time l saw Jimmie on stage was at the 2014 Headies Award. l had asked about him. He was so good, and when he introduced the hosts of the event, it was seamless and  natural. He is a good host and a good hype man. He saved Dbanj’s party, to be frank. l still don’t know how to classify the event. He kept making the very boring and dull atmosphere come alive, supported by music supplied by Dj Exclusive and Dj Spinall. Jimmie kept screaming Dbanj’s new nickname ‘Eja Nla’ so much to the anger of a guest  by my table where l stood, who malliciously asked: “Which yeye Eja Nla (big fish)? Dbanj is now a Titus or abi na shawa fish” We couldn’t help but laugh at that.”
“By 12.25am, Uzoma Dozie, the managing director of Diamond Bank and his wife, Adesuwa, after waiting almost endlessly for Dbanj and his special guest, Amber Rose, left. Shortly after, l saw Ayona, and her husband, Philip Trimmell, strolling out at 1.02am. l guess they were home bound too. The hall was still empty. I sighted Praiz in his all round black bespoke outfit designed by Jasonporshe. He was so dapper. He was my best dressed male that night. Timaya strolled in too, Shaydee, Teckno and Banky W who carried himself in a noble demeanor. Lynxx was so casually dressed like who is taking a walk in the park with his bae.
I saw Chris Obosi and his wife walking around and I could easily sense that they were also tired of waiting and were probably thinking of leaving when Jimmie started announcing that Eja Nla and madam Amber Rose were about to step in.”
“Excited and Happy ‘Eja Nla’

When Dbanj walked in with Amber Rose hand in hand like a couple walking down the aisle, Eja Nla was so happy and you could tell that he had a butterfly in him while feeling he’d achieved a great feat by standing side by side with Amber Rose. Lo and behold, they both walked into a practically empty hall. I am sure Amber Rose would be wondering why the hall was that empty. Didn’t Dbanj tell Nigerians she was storming their entertainment hub? Dbanj, Koko Master, Bangerlee or is it Eja Nla was just shaking like a jelly all over Amber and you would think he stood by one decent super star, well l think she is one in her own world and they walked straight to where Aremu Oniru sat. I stood directly opposite them and watched as Dbanj faked a chatty friendship with Amber Rose who pretended to be flowing with him because of the cool cash breathing in her account back in the United States. At this point, l asked myself: what did Amber Rose come to do in Nigeria? What would her presence do to Dbanj’s sinking image and career? Who advised Dbanj to go on such a project?”

“…Anyway, l think D’banj should have celebrated his 10th anniversary on stage by giving back to the music community and to the country whose fans made him. He should have had a black tie event. Where family, close friends and not ass lickers (that is if he still has close friends),the big wigs in their Nigeria entertainment industry, his contemporaries, young and old will come on stage and tell the world how he has inspired their career, sing any of his hit songs or sing a tribute song specially composed for him. D’banj loves everything America, so by now he should have seen how BET organizes such events for their big stars or legends and not spend hard earned money bringing Amber Rose, who is no nowhere near a role model but a glorified stripper who felt too big to twerk but ordered her ‘assistant’ like Dominic to twerk for sponsors like Diamond Bank and made his guests look stupid because everybody who came wanted to see Amber Rose twerk. Two lies D’banj told was that Amber will host his show, she never did, for the host of the show was Jimmie ofBeat FM, and she also did not twerk like the impression D’banj gave.

D’banj should have played the role of a god-father by inviting budding artistes like Runtown, Kiss Daniel, Korede Bello, Reekado Banks, Dija (l call them the Mavin babies that is if Don Jazzy will release them though) Brain, Skales, B-Red, Lil Kesh and Teckno. The list goes on. These chaps would come and rivet all on how D’banj has inspired their careers. And if he wants a big star to host his event, we have Genevieve Nnaji, Rita Dominic, Funke Akindele, Kate Henshaw or Omotola Jolade-Ekeinde who are people’s delight any day. They will be supported by my new favorite anchor man, Jimmie, he will soon be my “man crush” after Phyno, we would have had a beautiful and memorable night; biko.

He would have promised an unknown artist a record label deal in his newly formed Bangalee family; though we are yet to hear any singles from the ones on board.

Does D’banj have an inferiority complex problem even as big as he is in Africa? Why does he think being in American will put him a better and a bigger platform? Why doesn’t he think of ruling Africa and let the likes of Kanye West, that he was one time chasing around, Jay Z, John Legend and Common search for him? Why does he think these American stars are better than him? Now he has brought in Amber Rose, only God knows how much she got paid just for seven minutes on stage, to do what now? This is exactly what Darey Art Alade did too with Kim Kadashian. What is wrong with all these dudes? Meanwhile, ex- presidents like Bill Clinton will visit and give lectures. They will stay till the end of the events and the shallow and empty ones just spend three to seven minutes on stage doing nothing yet they are heavily paid. D’banj and co please give back to your society who made you and stop wasting money on these American stars who don’t give a hoot about you. Now when Kim Kadarshian was getting married to Kanye in Paris, did she remember that Darey Art-Alade paid her so much money to be at his show?

Did she send him an invite? And what about Kanye West did he remember to send D’banj an invite for his wedding? Nigerian artistes should please stop worshipping these guys and build their brands. Nigerian artistes are so big and talented, maybe the best after American artistes in the world. And that’s why l like P-Square. Can’t D’banj take a simple cue from his contemporaries like P-Square and 2baba, Flavor and Jay Martins who are making cool millions all over Africa? I heard with all the money he has made all through his career he is still living in a rented property like me, while P-Square, 2face even the Dr Sid (whom he kept accusing broke Mo’hits up) is happily settled in his career, marriage and has moved to his personal house. I am still not married so l have no moral ground to question why he is still single. When D’banj is sober he should ask himself what was the significance of bringing Amber Rose to Nigeria? l think among all the celebrated women he dated, he lost a good woman in Jennifer Obayuwana, a kind hearted hardworking and supportive woman. I am sure he secretly regrets losing the newly engaged Jennifer, a smart guy called Peter has taken over that jewel. Who knows? Jennifer may be secretly thanking God the affair ended.”

And Amber Rose hit the stage

By 1:39am, Amber finally came on stage, asking for someone to teach her how to dance an African dance, nobody even obliged, the crowd ignored her as she flashed her  camera smile, she was ignored until  she pointed at one young girl, who came on stage to dance shoki with her. It was even Jimmie who tactically reminded her to unveil D’banj’s new video with Akon. She was so disconnected with the event, almost blabbing as she announced, the video was not shown for more than three seconds. Everything looked so haphazard and disorganised. D’banj looked confused and lost but excitedly just standing by Amber Rose that you would think he is standing next to Michelle Obama or Beyonce. He kept whispering sweet nothing in her ears trying to make the crowd feel they were buddies or they have a connection everything was mapped out to make the bored crowd feel they were going to have a good time. D’banj kept giggling into Amber’s ears l can bet she didn’t hear a word of what he was saying but she kept this professionally prepared smile on her face but l can tell you Amber is thinking about her cash chilling in her bank account. D’banj was just shaking, jittering beside Amber Rose to the extent of when she was about leaving the stage, D’banj was yet to find the man in him. Pitiably, he even played the  bride’s maid or as he picked the tail of her evening dress and continued the long walk behind her. That was such a hilarious sight. Will D’banj even treat Genevieve Nnaji or any Nigerian female celebrity this way? All this for who? Amber was on stage for seven minutes. Anyway, we were all told that she was going to be back to twerk, instead Dominic twerked.”

“Another puzzle which l don’t quite understand about Dbanj’s personality is how he is quick to make enemies and forget those who genuinely supported his career. Later, l found out that  Dumebi Kachikwu, one of Dbanj’s biggest financiers, was in Lagos that day for his elder brother, Dr Ibe Kachukwu, the publisher of Complete Fashion’s daughter’s wedding after the wedding. He could have still popped in if all was well. Don Jazzy his former business partner and bossom friend was absent. Gbenga Adeyinka the first. Dele Momodu of Ovation magazine was not invited, his first show in Ghana was arranged by him. Seye Keyinde of City People. Kunle Bakare of Encomium. Abisoye Fagade of Sodium Solution, Adekunle Ayeni of Black House Media. Ayo Animashaun of Headies Award/Hip TV, although his presenters were on the red carpet. Cecil Hammond (Dbanj was the bestman at his wedding, later they started Koko lounge) Kelvin Orifa of MTN. Mayor Akinpelu of Global Execllence. Afolabi Oyekoya, Biodun Kupoluyi of E247, Justin Esade-Akpovi, entertainment editors like Victor Akande, Nsebong of Thisday newspapers who pushed Dbanj’s career to where it is today were deliberately not invited. Where are all the bigwigs in the Nigerian Entertainment industry, from Nollywood, comedy and the fashion industry like Okunoren twins and Alvince, I remember these guys have kitted him with their designs when he started, why didn’t he invite them or was his 10th anniversary event a money making venture? Just asking though. Those days of the koko master, he cannot cough without a big crowd all rushing and queuing to be at his show, but now the crowd I saw of his heavily publicized Amber Rose coming to host his show got me sad and thinking is the D’banj brand disappearing slowly or is it even dead?”

 ThisDay Newspaper has the full story.

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Africa Music Law™

AFRICA MUSIC LAW™ (AML) is a pioneering music business and entertainment law blog and podcast show by Fashion and Entertainment Lawyer Ms. Uduak Oduok empowering the African artist and Africa's rapidly evolving entertainment industry through brilliant music business and entertainment law commentary and analysis, industry news, and exclusive interviews.

Credited for several firsts in the fashion and entertainment industry, Ms. Uduak is also a Partner and Co-Founder of Ebitu Law Group, P.C. where she handles her law firm’s intellectual property law, media, business, fashion, and entertainment law practice areas. She has litigated a wide variety of cases in California courts and handled a variety of entertainment deals for clients in the USA, Africa, and Asia.

Her work and contributions to the creative industry have been recognized by numerous organizations including the National Bar Association, The American University School of Law and featured in prestigious legal publications in the USA including ABA Journal and The California Lawyer Magazine. She is also an Adjunct Professor at the prestigious Academy of Arts University in San Francisco.
For legal representation inquiries, please email (uduak@ebitulawgrp.com). For blog related inquiries i.e. advertising, licensing, or guest interview requests, please email (africamusiclaw@gmail.com). Thank you for visiting Africa Music Law™.

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2 Comments

  1. Winston Balagare says:

    Uduak . . . why are you tempting me? You know this is my lane. I promised to leave Dapo alone, but my fingers are itching to type something.

  2. Winston Balagare says:

    I will say this, though. It disgusts me to know that successful African men and women bathed, dressed, and traveled to this sham of a show, with the hopes of getting to see Amber Rose "twerk". Don't you people have any self-respect? You actually waited all night for that slag to take the stage, just so she could shake that dirty thing in your faces? No wonder she didn't respect you enough to stay for the entire "event".

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