Music Business

Celebrities Behaving Badly: Kaffy attacks Davido over cancellation of her dance services

Share

Celebrities Behaving Badly (CBB) documents terrible, immature and/or inappropriate conduct on and off social media by creative talents, mostly celebrities, and uses it as a way of discussing, primarily, public relations and branding for artists. On to today’ s post…

“This message goes to Mr Omo Baba Olowo…. Please help me tell him he is a motherf*cker from all dancers all over the country, ” said Kaffy in a recent viral video to Davido, among other things.

1.The facts using Kaffy’s version

What are the facts?

Kaffy, a popular dancer and her team, was allegedly contracted for an event in Lagos, 3 Thrones Concert, where Davido was to perform. Kaffy doesn’t tell us who exactly contracted her services and the terms of the contract. However, she states that the event organizers allegedly paid “millions of Naira” to Davido for his performance.

According to Kaffy, on the day of the event, Davido just before his performance decided he no longer needed dancers. He canceled. Kaffy felt this was in her words “unethical and unprofessional” and a highly disrespectful act by Davido. So, she took to social media to  attack and abuse Davido. Here is what she had to say in words and video:

” @kaffydance – ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!!! It’s alright if artiste don’t need us . We are artistes ourselves . It is very disrespectful for you to look down at and trample on people who in one way or the other contribute to where u are today. Dance is our widows mite to a lot of your careers . All u need to do is respect us. Even other people under you suffer ur arrogance from stylist to band men. This message is for those of you that disrespectfully disregard us dancers especially. @davidoofficial if u don’t want dancers express it way before U agree to allow them dance than when u about to climb the stage u decide u don’t need us again.or tell dancers not to come near u while u perform .wtf. It’s not ur fault we have learnt our lesson and we thank arrogant artiste like u as this will not continue for long. Nowadays artiste take a piss. People pay a lot of money to see u come out and give a good show it requires more than u jumping all over the place with no content . Even some artiste in other countries who perform alone still plan their craft. They practice they rehearse the Are never tired of doing better than their last. But here most don’t care only few like @peterpsquare and @rudeboypsquare @2niteflavour @tiwasavage @efya_nokturnal @iamseyishay @dareydarey even @jidenna a one man performer plans his craft for his fans. (This is to mention a few out of the few) to those who still respect our craft.”

2.The legal issue: Was there a contract between Davido and Kaffy?

First, as artists and talents, before you get mad, abuse and attack in videos or Instagram rants on social media, be sure you know what you are doing because you could potentially create legal liability for yourself. Davido and any artist in this situation have a vested interest in protecting their brand name and reputation, their source of livelihood. So, if you will make allegations of this sort, make sure you have the evidence.

a. Was there a contract between Kaffy for Davido to use her dancers at this event? 

Kaffy mentions that Davido “agreed” to have them dance on stage but canceled last minute. She also claims  there were “50 to 60 dancers practic(ing) 2-3weeks for (his) a**” .

First, last minute cancellations happen all the time in the concert business. It shouldn’t but it does. Sometimes there are legally valid reasons, sometimes there are none. Either way, as the business owner that Kaffy is, she should make her adjustments and shield herself, her dancers, and her business through the appropriate legal protections from such cancellations.

Second, typically, where live performances are concerned, the artist or his/her manager signs a contract directly with the promoter or event organizer. It is rare, in Nigeria’s music business, that the artist will sign a contract with dancers or a dance team to accompany his or her performance on stage.

Third, the live performance agreement  typically does not include a clause for the artist to have dancers perform, neither do the riders, the added perks the artist may ask for. Dancers are typically involved when artists shoot music videos. Even then, the music video director is the one who assembles the dance team, as independent contractors to the director, and pays them for their services. So, I am more inclined to believe, absent any evidence, that Kaffy had a contract with the 3Thrones Concert organizers, and not Davido.

Fourth, I am not sure what Kaffy’s point is. But, as an aside, she claims Davido received millions of Naira for his performance but what has that got to do with who hired her services to perform for Davido? Davido should be paid millions. That is his worth and the organizers are directly benefiting, monetarily, by having Davido perform for them. The question is, did Davido contract with the organizers or directly with Kaffy to have her and her team perform? If he didn’t, why should he be forced to have dancers when he doesn’t want one? Also, why “50-60 dancers?” For how many songs? How big is the stage? 50-60 dancers alone on one stage is a safety issue for the artist and concert goers.

Fifth, assuming there was in fact a contract between Kaffy and Davido, can Davido cancel the contract last minute? 

While it is unusual to see Davido with backup dancers (especially females) when he is performing live, let’s assume he in fact signed a contract with Kaffy. Can he cancel last minute? Yes he can. The cancellation, obviously, may be a material breach of the contract which could open Davido up to liability. The key thing, however, is that Kaffy should have a contract that insulates her from such last minute cancellation, i.e. Davido has to pay for the cancellation, and in fact Kaffy should collect all payment upfront, as is typical industry standard, before going on stage to perform. Kaffy, in her rants, has not said Davido owes her money. So what exactly is “unethical” about the cancellation?

As to the unprofessionalism, yes it is unprofessional if he in fact agreed for her to perform in his direct contract with her but changed his mind last minute. But, absent any evidence of who directly hired Kaffy for Davido and clarifying why we have 50-60 dancers on stage at a time for a Davido performance, calling him unprofessional appears premature.

2. The brand reputation issue

3-thrones-concertI agree that Davido can be highly disrespectful, and we have in fact seen his actions on social media. However, I believe that the present situation here is Kaffy’s ego speaking larger than life.

You can’t call someone unprofessional and be the one that is in fact unprofessional. It doesn’t work that way. Kaffy is no newbie. She has been around for a minute. Davido canceling as he did, assuming everything she said is true, doesn’t create any legal liability for her or should not.

a) She most likely already got paid for her services and that of her dancers in advance;

b) Neither Davido nor the organizers have asked her to return any monies paid in advance;

c) She has not said any of these parties owe her any money; and

d)  I received numerous flyers and press statements from the promoters promoting this concert. I never saw Kaffy advertised, much less mentioned as a dancer.  This means there is no damage to her reputation or that of her company for Davido saying last minute he does not want a dancer. She doesn’t have to return money for ticket sales, she didn’t pay money for the venue, she didn’t even pay for advertising and promotions of the event. So what’s with the drama and “thunder fire you” or alleged “unethical” and factually inaccurate dramatic rants?! Is it by force to use dancers on stage?

You can also hear Kaffy’s ego oozing so strongly. She talks about how dancers helped artists when they were nothing to get on the global map and now that they are something and known globally they forget them. While I love dance as an art form, a lot, the fact of the matter is that dance is only slowly but gradually becoming recognizable, say in the last 3-5years. It did not in the past and present propel Afrobeat/Afropop etc. to the global music map. So, Kaffy please deflate the ego a bit.

The bottom line is this. Kaffy, from a  brand standpoint, is solely responsible for putting a negative light on her professional and personal brand image. Further, Kaffy most likely received all payments from the organizers of the event for her services. Davido who the services was for decided he didn’t want dancers. It is part of doing business. She can make a business decision not to work with Davido again and keep that to herself since she would rather have her dancers dance to increase her visibility and bragging rights. But, it is “unprofessional,” using her word, and very rude to just go off on him over his decision not to use her services.

Further, if she has an issue with ensuring her dancers do dance, it is her duty to “express it way before”, in writing, her expectations for last minute cancellations and fees.  If Kaffy has  a contract to that effect, then it goes to show how very unprofessional she really is with how she dealt with Davido. This is because she knows or should know there is a better recourse i.e. professional press statement, press conference, mediation, arbitration or traditional filing of a lawsuit than getting on social media and calling Davido, her junior for that matter, *MotherF**ker” and all the nonsense she spewed.

It is not by force to have Kaffy dance on stage with her dancers. Kaffy who has been in the business for so long should, at a minimum, know this.

AML people, if you have a similar situation like Kaffy, please contact your local entertainment lawyer to help you resolve it. Don’t follow Kaffy’s bad example.

-Ms. Uduak

UPDATE: Video evidence shows Davido actually on stage performing with dancers during the event. Plus, other dancers have stepped forward calling out Kaffy’s hypocrisy.

Listen to the Latest AML Podcast Episodes

Share

Africa Music Law™

AFRICA MUSIC LAW™ (AML) is a pioneering music business and entertainment law website and podcast show 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.

For general inquiries, advertising, licensing, or to appear on the show as a guest, please email (info@africamusiclaw.com). Thank you for visiting.

ABOUT THE FOUNDER

Credited for several firsts in the fashion and entertainment industry, Uduak Oduok (Ms. Uduak) is a fashion and entertainment lawyer, speaker, visionary, gamechanger, trailblazer, and recognized thought leader, for her work on Africa’s emerging global fashion and entertainment markets, and the niche practice of fashion law in the United States. She is also the founder of ‘Africa Music Law,’ an industry go-to music business and law blog and podcast show empowering African artists. Her work in the creative and legal industries has earned her numerous awards and recognitions, including an award from the American University Washington College of Law for her “legal impact in the field of intellectual property in Africa." She has also taught as an Adjunct Professor at several institutions in the United States. For more information, visit her at https://msuduak.com.

You may also like...

1 Comment

  1. Winston Balagare says:

    First, all that manly aggression she exhibited in that video was very unattractive. And someone like Kaffy can’t afford to be any more unattractive. Anything she needed to say to David, she could have said over the phone or in an e-mail or text message. She has too much testosterone flowing through those veins for my liking.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *