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April 20, 2024
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Jeffrey Daniel of the legendary American R&B vocal group ‘Shalamar’

Afrobeat: Shalamar legend, Jeffrey Daniel applauds Nigerian music talents

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By Joshua Olomu

Jeffrey Daniel of the legendary American R&B vocal group ‘Shalamar,’ has applauded the ingenuity of Nigerian musicians and array of talents in the country.

He gave the commendation when he featured on NAN Forum of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Abuja.

According to the multi-talented music legend, the Nigerian music industry has produced most of the best artistes from the continent that have showcased the African music genre on the global stage.

“When I got here in 2010, and I looked around, I said, my God, wait till the world see what is going to come out of Nigeria, as I was calling it the Nigerian renaissance.

“ I was right; now look at what is coming, Burnay Boy, Davido, Wizkid, Tiwa Savage, Tems and lot of others, I knew this was going to happen.

“The funny thing back then in 2010, if you went out, 90 percent of the music that you hear in the clubs was American music, and that 10 percent was Nigerian music.

“Now, it is the other way around; it is 90 percent Nigerian music and 10 percent foreign music, and I am very proud of the Nigerian music industry, how it has grown up.

“They have their own thing and I would love to see their own thing blossom and develop because that is what will make the rest of the world intrigued by them.

“A lot of them are already telling their stories within their music and it is coming out loud,” he said.

Daniel, who was a judge on the first three seasons of the popular talent hunt show ‘Nigerian Idol’, however urged Nigerian music artistes to keep their originality in telling their stories.

He advised that the quest for foreign validations in form of awards and contracts should not make Nigerian artistes discard their uniqueness and style.

According to him, African music already has strong appeal and acceptance on the global stage.

“I understand that they want to be like the Chris Browns and the Jay -Zs and all that, but you still represent something better when you tell your own story.

“I see that a lot of Nigerian artistes are now going over there, signing contracts, publishing deals overseas, and when you go over there, you are dealing with their culture, with their paradigm.

“They want to be a part of that, and they want to get that big money, but when will Africa start standing for our own?

“I would love to partner with some Nigerian artistes, help develop some artistes,but at the same time, I do not want to compromise their thing.

“Still there are things that they can incorporate in their works so that they do not fall in some of the trap like some of their Americans counterpart’s did,” he said.

Speaking on the trendy ‘Japa Sydrome’, especially among the youths, Daniel who is married to a Nigerian and now based in the country, said it was time Nigerians look inward and develop their own.

He however added that the resourceful and creative Nigerian youths only needed more support from within for them to stop the rush for greener pasture and validation abroad.

“Now people say, why am I here when Nigerians are trying to go over there? but what are they going there for? I was born and raised over there so I know what is there.

“There is no doubt that Africa is the most resource-rich continent on the planet.

“I am not talking about just resources in the ground, I am talking about human resourcesm because right now, Nigerians are the number one university students in America.

“Nigerians are some of the number one doctors, engineers, pediatricians, designers, or whatever in America, in the UK, and Canada.

“You have resilience and the tenacity of the Nigerian people, African people and all we have to do is fix what we have here, then we will have this amazing experience,” he said. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)

Edited by Ekemini Ladejobi

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