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5 Aug 2016

OPEN LETTER TO THEENTERTAINMENTCOMMUNITY IN JOS CITY - Solomon Inusa Nyimlo

For over two decades we (Jos) pride ourselves
as the hub of entertainment in Nigeria and
Africa yet we have little or nothing to show for
it except the names we keep naming saying,
this or that person came out of Jos. Am
honestly sick of this bullshit; we keep holding on
to the past and forgetting to work in the present
to develop and create a future we all desire.
How has it profited us all that a Jesse Jags, MI
Abaga, 2face Idibia, Jeremiah Gyang, Saint Obi,
Ice Prince Zamani, Psquare and others all came
out of Jos? Has it given upcoming musicians a
platform to rise in their game and become
superstars? Why is it that “our Jtown ‘Heros’
have to leave the boundaries of this city before
they come to fame? Isn’t it time to begin to
look inside? Hmmm!
its time we take the
bull by the horns and change our fortune, thus,
the course of entertainment on the plateau. It is
our responsibility, all of us to make it work from
DJ’s, Comedians, Musicians, On Air
Personalities, Promoters, Government, Churches,
Event Managers, Club Owners and etc. It’s time
we each play our parts professionally for the
good of all; else we will continue to stay where
we have always been.
Why am I writing this letter? It’s because am
sick and tired of this so called Jtown nonsense
entertainment industry were we don’t innovate
or create anything new. We just sit down and
wait for someone to begin anything and we just
begin to copy and copy wrongly. Every event
you see is someone trying to out play his
friends or the other group and yet we still do it
worse than they did.
How can we get respect? Why should we get
support? When all that we do is fight, beef, bad
talk each other behind our backs while we
shake hands and pretend we are pals. We
cannot even retweet, BC (broadcast) or share
someone else’s event or applauded their
performance if they are not a part of ‘our crew’!
Shame on us all. That is why we walk the street
of Jos claiming that we the best rapper,
producer, Singer, etc. with our pockets empty,
living in our parents’ house, jumping from one
Keke-Napep to another, sipping cheap wine and
carrying small girls around in the name of “we
are entertainers”
TO MUSICIANS
If there is one major lesson we all have learnt
so far is this “Talent alone is not enough to
make you a success”, I walk around and see a
lot of talented youths in Jos with nothing to
show for it. We allow our gifts to blind us to the
reality of life that we often forget to do what is
expected of us instead, we become proud and
arrogant, constantly in competition with each
other without a prize to be won.
We divide ourselves into groups not with the
aim of harnessing our strengths to uplift our
careers but, with the aim to show off and out
perform others. We block opportunities for
others, hijack shows and events for what
reason? We don’t attend other artists’ shows
unless we are on the roster. Even if we do, we
still won’t pay at the gate cos “we are artistes”!
What a shame!
Why should an artiste collect show money on
behalf of other artistes and keep it?
Why should artistes talk bad about others to get
them off shows?
Why should artistes collect money for their
show and ask others to perform for free?
Many of us artist blame OAPs for not promoting
our music on air well. Why should they? When
most of you artistes are not well informed about
what you do? You cannot be interviewed on air
cos your English is bad and your persona is
terrible and those of you who have had the
opportunity to be represented are so ungrateful
and rude to OAPs. It’s about time we changed.
2015 is upon us friends, it’s time we unite and
be our brother’s keeper only then will the
government and other stake holders respect us
and pay us what is due. If we stand and defend
each other, we will open doors of prosperity
across board for all to enjoy. I besiege us all to
develop ourselves and turn that talent into skills,
let’s see better performances on stage, great
music and love for our brothers or we will
become as said to the great Troy “Your Blessing
goes hand in hand with your curse.”
TO ON AIR PERSONALITIES (OAP’s) AND DJs
Just in case you didn’t notice, when was the
last time jtown was crazy about any show on
radio or TV? Not anymore! Cos you guys have
lost creativity and we are so bored with the
same programing every week without a well
branded local Jtown content. Isn’t it a shame
that our radio playlist is full of music from
Lagos and yankee? Is it that Jtown music is
below standard or what?
I get it maybe you feel that playing #jtownmusic
on your show will make it seem wacked or
better yet make you look or sound wacky.
Therefore to be a part of the happening OAPs,
you have to talk about Phyno, Jay-Z, MI, Wizkid,
etc and play their music but, you can’t talk
about any Jtown artist cos “the station will say
its hype!” Is it not ‘hype’ when you talk about
‘outsiders’? Oh! I get it… its news ko! (Funny)
I remember those days when Jtown OAPs and
DJs were responsible for creating stars such as
MI, Ice Prince, Law Breakers, Jeremiah Gyang,
Grip Boys etc, they walk the streets with pride
and respect knowing what they helped build…
God bless DB MC, Sterry J, Joey Kevin Lar,
Kyenzee Ngupar, Eldee, DJ Sunny Jeff etc these
guys made stars in jtown.
Today the story is different instead of OAPs
and DJs helping jtown artist they are busy
competing with artist for attention and fame.
Note: Guys, your fame comes with the work you
do with artistes! In this New Year I will love to
see OAPs finding ways beyond their company’s
policies to help us build this industry with more
hypes, interviews, celebrity gist and more jtown
music on air plays. It’s time to celebrate our
own Jtown Stars and you can make it happen
for us all. Your reward should be the
satisfaction you get for helping to make a
superstar.
TO RECORD COMPANIES
One thing that we saw in 2014 more in jtown is
the birth of record companies. I was elated with
this development thinking that this thread will
bring some organization to the development of
music in Jos but, I was wrong.
It’s clear that most of these labels you hear
artist repin’ on their songs are just carved out
names for them to feel cool about what they
are doing. It’s almost like a thing of pride to
say “I belong to this crew.” A CREW is what
they really are not RECORD COMPANY!
The few that could almost pass for a label are
not creative, instead of thinking outside the box
and finding ways to sell their artist they are
busy copying each other, mimicking the same
events every month end, award shows,
promotions etc.
It’s time for Jtown to showcase a new set of
record companies who will stick together to
make things work for their artistes and the
whole industry. Let’s see companies
collaborating with each other to do BIG events,
award shows, promotions etc.
As soon as record companies put themselves
together we would begin to see growth and
respect in the industry that would begin to
attract financial supports, endorsement and
sponsorship form government, cooperate bodies
and philanthropists.
TO MEDIA HOUSES
It’s a shame when I see and hear what media
houses are doing to the entertainment industry
in Jos. Man! These guys are killing us! How can
you explain those policies they make preventing
OAP’s form talking about jtown artist and
events? OAPs have to almost kill themselves
seeking permission to interview a local artist!
I heard a radio station in Jos stopped a jtown
music show, for what benefit? OAPs are given
querries, their salaries are cut down because
they talked about a jtown event! Some would
rather make a Chris Brown or P-square top on
their music chat show than a local Jtown artist!
It’s a shame that you are doing this to us your
own people.
When I hear entertainment news on our local
station and it’s about AY Show or Beyonce, then
it’s a slap on our face. What you are telling us
is that we in Jos don’t do anything worth notice.
I know you want to get paid for stuff but, when
it’s like you are victimizing us it calls for
concern. Please note: that when you support us
and help us grow then, we would have the
money to come pay for stuff.
TO THE CHURCH, CLUB OWNERS, COOPERATE
BODIES
It’s amazing that its only in Jos that we have
company’s worth Millions of Naira operating
different business from Bakery,
Communications, Non Profits, Hotels, Clubs,
Banks, House hold products, Oil etc. with none
of them supporting or sponsoring entertainment
in Jos and we still patronize them
I thought that companies are supposed to have
a social responsibility (CSR) to the communities
where they operate? Can someone please tell
me what is the CSR of LG, MTN, AIRTEL, GLO,
THERMOCOOL, BANKS, CHURCHES, GUINNESS,
OASIS BAKERY, DSTV, GRAND CEREAL and the
rest doing to the people of Jos especially the
youths?
I believe that in this 2016, we entertainers will rise
up and ask these corporations to start
supporting us like they do in Lagos, Port, Enugu,
other places. Since our leaders in government
and communities would not demand that these
organization should support the youths, we must
find a way to ask them ourselves.
What am I saying? I want to see our own Jtown
artistes on bill boards as brand ambassadors for
these organization, let’s see them sponsoring
events and award shows in Jos with good
money, if they are not making a lot of it in Jos
they would have packed out since yet, they
keep opening new branches in almost every
street.
Let’s see the churches paying good money to
gospel musicians even if they are members of
the same church. It’s a gift from God to us all
to profit. Some are called to preach, some to
play instruments, some to sing and others
church administration, all to the glory of God.
TO THE GOVERNMENT
It’s amazing how our government are looking for
ways to increase revenue, reduce
unemployment and attract investors to the state
and they are neglecting the entertainment
industry which is the right vehicle to do just
that.
I guess it’s because they see what we do as
some sort of hobby or a game or maybe they
just don’t care about us so, they mock us with a
ministry called “ministry of youth and social
development”/ “Ministry of culture and tourism”
with a 40+ year olds as commissioners who
seat in offices doing what?…
Do you know it’s only in Plateau State that you
will see a “Miss Plateau” or “Miss Culture and
Tourism” entering Keke Napep? They are not
even recognized by the government in fact, for
organizers of this event to get endorsement by
the government they have to pay, which is not
bad but the kind of neglect these queens suffer
is pathetic.
When will we see our government create
opportunities for our artist in Jos to rise out of
poverty? I mean really do something to
subsidize the cost of hosting events for jtown
artistes? When will our government stop bringing
in artistes from Lagos and Abuja for government
event and use our local jtown artistes and pay
them well.
It’s a shame when an artist will be invited from
Lagos and be paid over 2million Naira with flight,
security, hotel bills and a welcome visit to the
governor while our own Jtown artiste who are
‘privileged’ to get on a government event roster
are hardly paid N100, 000
my point is this, if you don’t celebrate us at
home, when will we be called outside Jtown and
be celebrated?
I must commend the “pay your tax campaign”
by government who used our own local artistes
as ambassadors. That’s a start because we can
improve and do better and maybe someday we
will have a Jtown artiste as a Glo or MTN
Ambassador.
IN CONCLUSION
I will like to urge all Jtown people to support us
entertainers in Jos in 2015, there is already a
great support for comedians and Djs in Jos that
is why they are driving better cars and living
better lives than musicians. Let’s see you paying
N100000 and possibly more to musicians to
perform in weddings, birthdays, and church
services.
It’s going to be a great year for entertainment in
Jos but it requires all of us to join our hands
together and respect each other’s skills and
talents and increase appreciation for what we
all do. Only then shall we reap the fruit of our
labor in this industry.
Shalom.
Sign: Solomon Inusa Nyimlo
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