Stars, Awards ,Lack of support, envy, Self-centeredness, jealousy, lack of proper promotion, bloggers misrepresentation of artists, the anglophone problem of division, pitfalls and possible way forward.
The Anglophones, the English speakers of Cameroon; those who originate from the Southwest and Northwest regions, are exclusively often dubbed “Anglo-fools” by their francophone brothers. The Anglophones are the most talented and intelligent Cameroonians, but history and time both have established that, “divide and rule” is the modus operandi applied by the Francophone to put us; the Anglophones under eternal submission in every position and lately the same tactics has been put in place as the bedrock of the entire music industry.
Anglophones; a people marginalized, denied of every fundamental human right, a people who have been through a lot and now whose voices are being heard world-wide through their music, via the outbreak of social media like YouTube, Facebook and Soundcloud.
STARS: These are Anglophones, Southern Cameroonians who have represented us musically, created melodies to aid with the stress and frustration, gave us a dose of hope in their lyrics. Some have even put the name Cameroon on the musical world map, carried and waved the flag on international soils, others are upcoming and they too will represent us big time if we rally unanimously to support and promote them. We hold the following artists in very high esteem;
- International Award winners: Sine(African Star Award 2008), Stanley Enow (MTV Africa Music Awards, 2014 best new act & African Muzik Magazine Awards, 2014 best new act), Gasha(African Muzik Magazine Awards, 2014 Best Female Central Africa). Other artists like Daphne and jovi have been nominated in several awards, but our votes were not enough to make them win.
- National Awards: So far so good; Stanley Enow, Jovi, Gasha, daphne, Mr. Leo just to name a few. They have been nominated and won several national/international awards…level don change. They need more promotion & support to get more.
LACK OF SUPPORT, ENVY AND JEALOUSY ALL TO THE BENEFIT OF THE FRANCOPHONE:
Prior to the awards, there existed a sense of togetherness, genuine support and love. Jovi supported Stanley Enow by encouraging his fans to vote for Stanley Enow, 2014 MAMA awards. Stanley Enow used to support Jovi and Newbell music artists by posting on his timeline about their productions. What really happened? Was the divide and rule tactic subtly applied? Yes of course it was. The normal fans didn’t notice, two major fractions were created…Team Jovi & Team Stanley Enow.. With Jovi coming from the Northwest, and Stanley Enow from the Southwest, another Anglophone question was raised. The “fufu and Eru, & Achu question” , ” Cam no go nonsense”, played great role in putting us apart, but the Jovi and Stanley beef came with even more implications, maybe they don’t realise they represent two distinct people by region who need unity more than anything to cope in a country where they’ve been marginalized and kept in shadows for too long. Our forefront generals, two Anglophones rappers…the very best in the whole of Cameroon and Central Africa. “WTF”. Jovi’s Fans will not support Enow and keeps calling his lyrics whack and failing completely to see the sense in them because they are blinded by envy, jealousy and to remain true fans to jovi they pledged never to support Enow. Enow’s Fans on the other hand keeps reminding Jovi how stocked he is in Yaounde, failing to understand that every dog has its day. Not only the fans were poisoned, other artists and bloggers have sided to their detriment and benefit of the Francophone. All of Stanley Enow’s fans supports Locko likewise all of Jovi’s Fan. They will do same for other Francophone artists, this explains why their views on youtube are quiet higher; even though most of them are empty vessels making just noise and selling porn. Imagine if Stanley Enow and Jovi were to put this beef behind and embrace each other, imagine if we are truly united as Anglophones, promoting ourselves, imagine Jovi’s fans supporting Stanley Enow and vice versa. Even H.E. Paul Biya failed our unity, that’s why his regime continues with the watch words; bribery and corruption. We do not have to wear their shoes. We have the best musicians, we have the best rappers, we have the best R”n”B artists, we are truly the best in everything in Cameroon, therefore we must not give them the chance to take it away from us. We preach Love not hate, we preach unity not division… We’re first Cameroonians before Francophone or Anglophone…
LACK OF PROPER PROMOTION AND BLOGGERS MISREPRESENTATION OF ARTISTS: Promotion is done in several ways; self promotion, promotion on blogs and other medias.
SELF PROMOTION: Most of our artists have completely failed or ignored the role of self promotion. Self promotion starts with answering these few questions;
The question of Branding: Lots of good Anglophone musicians, but only a few are actually using their names as “products” . They are just good musicians to the fan base they succeeded in building but nothing more, they failed to get branded, but it’s never too late to learn from others and adjust. Artists like Stanley Enow did answered this particular and very important question, that’s why people are comfortable wearing caps with the tag, ” Stanley Enow”.
The Question of Audience: Just like the three basic economic questions of; what to produce? how to produce? and for whom to produce?, every musician must answer the musical question of targeted audience.Even the best music can get the worst response if it’s in the hands of the wrong fan base
If an artist can answer the above questions, then they are ready to start promoting. Every one is doing good to at least update their Facebook fan page, regular tweets and pictures on Instagram. That’s good but self promotion doesn’t end there. As an artist, you have to be active on blogs, you have to re-tweet post made by bloggers and fans in support and promotion of you. Avoid at all cost to get on the bad side of social media for it creates and destroys.
BLOGGERS: The roles of bloggers in the entertainment industry could never be undermined; they can promote a brand and product and they can destroy it as well. We have witnessed this before and we need to avoid such. Our bloggers are doing a great job and everyday we get to have a new blog created. This is very nice and industrious, but why concentrate to dig up the past of artists who are branding their names? Why are you quick to add more fuel to a fire that will only consume us the Anglophones? Is it because you need traffic and influx of viewers on your site? if yes then don’t worry, start promoting talents, write creative write-ups about them and they will endorse you and also subscribe on your blog. It’s time for a change and this is the wake up call to the blogging community. If you must expose things which are rather kept in the dark, create a category in your blog for Politics or something you can think about, start writing about wicked and barbaric la Republique du Cameroun regime, about their corruption in all institutions of the country. The corruption of the regime pushed most of our brothers and sisters to register some of the past you are digging. Bloggers let them be, do not bring down their name to increase traffic on your blogs. Blogging is not copy and paste, not cut and circle. That could be done on Facebook, make witty posts people going to remember you for. And to you the artists when a blogger puts his mind to write creatively about you, it’s very simple for you to share link on your timeline. God bless your hustle as you choose the creative path.
POSSIBLE WAY FORWARD: Get branded, know your audiences, know the different kind of audience, decide if you are singing for people who can bring the endorsement or will like to promote your style of music. Unite at the forefront and it must start with Stanley and Jovi, raise creative bloggers, active stars who are not proud to share post to promote themselves and to be watchful about the tricks in place to divide us. Remember what you do today, Kids gonna remember you for that. Choose your path, your role and do it to the best of your ability.
It was a long one,
Thanks for reading
Your Voices Count(Y.V.C)
We preach unity of the voices, harmony of the echoes, making of good music… for a better Cameroon,