Mohbad: Music label owners are like criminal gangs

By Adeola Soetan

Activist goes history lane on how music label owners exploit artistes, which often dim their stars

After Abioro signed on Emperor Pick Peter to replace KSA, he gave him full standard musical instruments to be paid by installment and there was no default. The talented juju musician who nobody taught how to play guitar, was making waves with KSA and Ebenezer Obey.

After sometime Abioro heard that Peter had started building his own house without completing payment, although there was no default in payment agreement, Abioro invited Peter to his office and ordered him to pay in full the balance of the musical instrument immediately. Emperor Pick Peter was surprised with the sudden change in agreed payment style.

The young struggling Peter couldn’t pay, immediately, so the instruments were withdrawn from him, leading to the termination of the label contract. An “instrument – less Peter who had a hugely talented rising star KSA to contend with in their genre of music, was back to the street looking for sponsors and new record label owners. Of course, this affected his upswinging career.

By the time Peter was able to get replacement and come back on stage, the margin between him and KSA, the two “competing stars” became wider with Sunny Ade having an edge. The gap never closed, in fact, it became wider till Emperor Pick Peter left the stage and Sunny Ade became the only dominant force in the type of heavy instrumentation juju music both played..Obey Commander didn’t play their type of instrumental – guitar driven juju music like the duo. Go and listen to “Omo Ode De, Omo Eran Da” album by Peter and KSA’s prompt musical response: “E kilo fo mo Ode ko ma rin ni Ipado” then you will appreciate their similarities and usage of guitar as a weapon of musical war.

If not for this setback and later life threatening sickness that retired him, , Emperor Pick Peter would have been the main competitor to King Sunny Ade. Obey’s music was a distinct class on its own with composition, melody and traditional rendition with lesser heavy instrumentation.

Many of today’s record label owners carried the genes of totalitarianism of many of their forebears in the entertainment industry by producing and promoting artistes in captives who get rich, famous, anonymous, wrecked, killed by owners whims and caprice. These artistes in captives are placed on oaths of total allegiance, inducted into cultism, gangsterism, drug. Today’s label owners hold all the aces and play the trump card as at when due. Many artists enjoy the captivity since it comes with wealth, fame and comfort. Few that reject such owners’ hemlock may find themselves to blame with no carrier progression or death of a promising career.

These guys are like political mafia leaders who invest heavily on their followers in their camps for a purpose, but woe betides any follwer who wants to have his / her own soul, breathe, think, see, ask questions, act independently,. The more our politics becomes roguish, the more political leaders become crooked, the more our society becomes criminal. Of course the more our youths including many unscrupulous label owners and artistes who see them as role models, godfathers and mentors become criminal minded in the race of survival of the most crooked.

Focusing on the mere effects and not on the causes is mere begging the question and hypocrisy. . We all should know this or we pretend not to know.

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