Hello AML People! I am happy to be back in the AML Lounge. I already mentioned in a prior post that I cannot wait to party like a rockstar in a week’s time once my schedule eases up from super busy to busy. I can’t wait!
In the meantime, folks my AML docket is full and we need to clear a couple of stories “kia kia” (quickly). What do we have here?
We’ve got two people within Nigeria’s Music Industry projecting some serious personal and corporate branding “swag.” Artists, labels and all industry professionals take notes.
First up is Cecil Hammond. Hammond is owner of FlyTime TV, among the many diverse companies/assets he owns/co-owns in his ever expanding portfolio. Further, in case you are not aware, Hammond is quite involved on the back end with the branding and ensuring the necessary connections for the Mo’Hits/D’Banj brand(s) in the West. Indeed, if you also watch carefully, you can see his constant reinforcement of Mo’Hits/D’banj everywhere. Take for example this interview. We all know 9ice, certainly across Africa, is a recognizable name. He, not D’Banj, performed for Nelson Mandela’s 90th birthday. Nevertheless, throughout the interview, there is a big banner with D’Banj that appears to hover on the host and 9ice that you can’t help but notice.
Mr. Hammond, it would have been nice to give an artist of such prominence like 9ice a tad bit more visibility with a different backdrop or, at a minimal, include a banner of him in this interview.
Nevertheless, what a fluid and fun interview. Hammond’s hosts tend to be pretty on point, fun and articulate and what about Mr. Alapomeji Bashorun Gaa aka 9ice?
That gets me into the second person on the PR/Branding AML spotlight, 9ice!
Wow! 9ice has come a looooooong way. Yes, that many “Os” to really emphasize my point and underscore his evolution. In this interview, he displays a significant growth/maturity I am beginning to notice in many of his interviews. Further, he continues to refine his public speaking skills and is a lot more articulate, getting better each time. I am also glad to see him take control of his personal affairs and show the mother of his child, industry professional and personality Toni Payne, a lot more respect by refusing to discuss her or their child with the public/media.
Of significance, to me, in this interview, is his statement that he cannot teach English to an Englishman but he can teach his own traditions. This basic premise from a marketing and public relations perspective is why Nigerian/African artists like 9ice, Asa, TuFace, D’Banj among others in that category have been or are becoming quite successful. Why check your culture, language and people at the door just because you are an artist? Why lose your identity to forge a new one that will always keep you coming last? It makes no sense.
TIP: Learn from 9ice and the aforementioned artists AML folks. Don’t lose your identity because you want to be a singer, designer, filmmaker, label owner and for some of you that write me and tell me you now want to be entertainment lawyers, the same tip applies.
Artists and labels that are helping shape the future sound of Nigerian music, please jot down this poignant statement from 9ice.
Watch the video. Cecil & 9ice, carry on. 9ice, with the way you are going, I have no doubt you will be a strong legal advocate when you get to your stated goal of being a lawyer.
P.s. 9ice has an upcoming concert on March 11th, 2012 at the Eko Hotel & Suites.
Watch 9ice in 2008 Perform at Mandela’s 90th birthday- what a memorable history both for 9ice and Nigerian music