Entertainment Lifestyle 

Nigerian Singer Asha Gangali Warns: ‘Afrobeats Could Fall Off Like Dancehall Did’

Asha Gangali, a Nigerian singer, rapper, and talent hunt coach, has affirmed to his compatriots, that the fame Afrobeats currently enjoys globally is at the expense of other genres such as Dancehall which has ‘fallen off’.

According to the Nigerian Tribune, Gangali, who will be a judge in the upcoming Naija Star Search Reality show, which is expected to focus mainly on Afrobeats, said that more efforts are needed to sustain the movement and implored Nigerians to see the talent show “as leverage to take Afrobeats to a greater height”.

“Everybody is shouting that Afrobeats getting Grammy recognitions but if you don’t manage it from home; if you don’t get a platform to continue to project the right vibes to the global audience, it’s going to wade off as Dancehall genre did,” he said.

“We got there on the billboard at the expense of dancehall reggae. Do you think the reggae dancehall people are happy? We’ve dominated all their airwaves. Afrobeats has dominated but if you don’t manage it, we may lose the fame in the long run. That’s while we have to keep discovering new talents like we are seeing in this Naija Star Search,” he added.

He continued: “You will agree with me that our music has evolved over the years. We have fused so many genres from hip hop to R&B and reggae. We’ve always evolved. We took over hip hop just like we’ve taken over Amapiano. It has always been our thing. We took these foreign rhythms and beats and then interpreted them.”

In March this year, two years after Billboard discontinued its Reggae Digital Song Sales chart which ranked the top-downloaded Reggae songs, the magazine announced that it had joined forces with music festival and global Afrobeats brand Afro Nation to launch the first-ever US chart for Afrobeats Songs.

At the time, Billboard’s SVP of Charts and Development, Silvio Pietroluongo, had said his organization was proud to showcase the top songs and singers with the new weekly ranking, “as with much of the world, Afrobeats has grown tremendously as a genre in America”.   At the same time, Afro Nation founder Obi Asika had said that the last 10 years have seen Afrobeats explode into a worldwide phenomenon, influencing culture and fashion across the globe and that he was humbled to have made a contribution to growing the genre “alongside many talented, passionate people”.  

In November 2019, British disc jockey David Rodigan, had declared at a Dubwise media launch, that “Dancehall music has been replaced by Afrobeats” due to the overwhelming amount of Trap sounds being represented as Dancehall music.

Rodigan had explained that the new sounds coming out of Jamaica, “people in Europe are saying it’s not Dancehall anymore. It’s a beat that’s not dancehall” and that many said they had taken to Afrobeats because it was nice, sweet, easy to dance to and “hasn’t got any ­attitude”.

While Nigeria is looking forward to the inaugural Naija Star Search reality show, which is set to hit television screens in September, in Jamaica, the entertainment fraternity has abandoned the much-loved and highly-watched Kings and Queens of Dancehall talent show, which gave a platform to Reggae singers and Dancehall deejays to showcase their talent, using original lyrics only.

Magnum Kings and Queens of Dancehall, which was played out in front of a live audience and three judges, produced stars such as 2015 Grammy nominee Devin Di Dakta, Deep Jahi, Tanto Blacks, Specialist, Jah Bouks and featured other stars such as Rygin King, Kalado and Stylysh. 

However, it was abandoned in 2018 after 11 seasons. 

Sourced From Nigerian Music

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