Music is an eternal companion of mankind but the music maker is but only a seasonal hitmaker, who comes to the fore, composes some great tunes and when his time is up, he fades away for someone else to take his place in the limelight.
This is a fate, every musician no matter how great, will experience at a point in their life. Artistes like Eazzy have been bold enough to admit that their career is dead with no more hits or limelight left for them and there is no shame in it, but others have also denied the fact that their time as top artistes is over and they are now enjoying the residues of a once vibrant career.
In this very controversial article, we discuss some of our once-vibrant artistes whose careers are dead, yes I mean dead but do not want to admit it and keep on releases tracks upon tracks, hoping one will hit the jackpot once again, but all to no avail.
Let’s start with the man insane – Kwaw Kese
Our very own king of the street, Kwaw Kese, AKA Abodam. He has seen it all in the Ghana music industry as an artiste. Exactly a decade ago, he was by far the biggest artiste in Ghana, releasing hits upon hits and never looking short of tracks. At the 2008 Ghana Music Awards, he scooped five awards, including the prestigious Artiste of the Year accolade. Still one of the most memorable scene ever at the Ghana Music Awards, now VGMA, Kwaw Kese brought a locally weaved basket to the event to take away all the plaques and he indeed ended up scooping it all with his five awards on the night. From there, he never looked back and went on to release bangers upon bangers, which won him several awards at the VGMA in successive years.
However, Kwaw Kese hasn’t been able to put together any hit song in the last three years or so. It not as if he isn’t trying or releasing tracks, it just a matter of his time being over. In other words, his career is dead. Recently he released a single titled 6”30 which was well hyped by presenters and DJs whom he has personal relationships with due to his long stay in the industry. But still the song couldn’t travel outside the studios of those DJs but faded away after just a week or so on the airwaves. Perhaps it’s about time, Kwaw Kese admits his career is dead and ventures into something else such as Artiste managing or record label owner who discovers talent and produces them.
Then Comes the One Ghana hitmaker – E.L
It EL baby, between 2011 and 2016, that was a signature tone that your ears couldn’t swerve as far as you are in town, a club or a pub. In 2011, EL stormed the music industry and quickly grew to become the people’s favourite artiste due to his danceable beats and songs. More impressively, he was the maker of his own beat and solely worked 100 percent on all his tracks. That was so impressive right? One Ghana for Your Pocket, Auntie Martha, All Black are just but a few of his hits during his hey days.
All these accumulated in him being crowned Artiste of the Year at the 2016 VGMAs. But since that glorious year, the former BBnZ, artiste has failed to make any impact on the music scene, even though he has since released two albums and various singles. His latest album, BAR IV, which was released in later 2017 proved to be a disappointment as it enjoyed next to nothing in terms of airplay and media attention.
On several occasions, social media users have made mockery of him, teasing that he needs to work extra hard to resurrect his dying career. But in truth, EL’s career isn’t dying, it is already dead! Just that EL still doesn’t see that or he is simply refusing to accept it. Maybe he might have realized it when he once tweeted that he was targeting the Grammies. The replies he got was simply that of trolling, with memes telling him that his career is well and truly dead.
Cartel Big Jay of the Praye fame
Cartel Big Jay was part of the all-conquering hiplife trio known as Praye who shot into the limelight somewhere in 2003 after winning the maiden edition of the Nescafe Africa Revelation in 2005. The group went ahead to cement their place as one of the finest music acts in the country, releasing some of the biggest hits in the mid-2000s. The group however disintegrated in 2011 after one member Praye Tintin was kicked out of the group. Three years later the remaining two decided to part ways on ‘mutual grounds’ in order to begin their careers as solo artistes.
Unfortunately none of them, beside Choirmaster, has enjoyed any success since embarking on their solo projects. Funny enough, Cartel Big Jay still portrays himself as a celebrity, lol, partaking in entertainment discussions and granting media interviews as an artiste, even though he has hardly been relevant on the music scene since 2014.
Cartel Big J from all indications has not realized that his music career is dead and buried and still carries himself round as an artiste in his prime, even though he is thousand miles away from that. His reunion with former group member, Praye Tintin hasn’t done him any good in his bid to resurrect his dead career.
The ladies man – Kwabena Kwabena
For half a decade, the silky voice singer was the face of highlife in Ghana. A year hardly came to pass that he did not release any hit highlife track. And for three consecutive years in a role, Kwabena Kwabena was crowned highlife artiste of the year at the VGMAs. However, the Royal Lady hitmaker has been irrelevant in the last three years as far as music is concerned.
In 2017, he did well to release an album titled Ahyesi but the album didn’t make any waves in the country, with very few people being aware that Kwabena Kwabena even released an album in 2017. The failure of the album was summed up in the 2018 VGMA nomination list, where the album or even a song on it failed to nail down a single nomination. His influence in the industry has dwindled down to the point where he is no longer regarded as one of the top and important acts in the country. Truth be told, his career is DEAD or least, in coma, just that he hasn’t realized it yet or hasn’t been told by those around him.
The Dancehall Queen – Kaakie
Remember the name Kaakie, the lady who came and took the nation by storm as a dancehall artiste and even beat Dancehall icon Shatta Wale to the Dancehall Artiste of the Year at the 2012 VGMAs? Yes!! the once vibrant high-flying dancehall queen was discovered by music legend, Samini and signed on to his label, High Grade family.
Kaakie did not disappoint and straightaway went ahead to release some of the biggest dancehall tunes between 2011 and 2015. Some of her biggest hits includes but not limited to DC Turnup, Too Much and Turnup The Music. But after her exit from High Grade Family, Kaakie struggled to replicate her success under High Grade family. And in recent years all she does is post saucy pictures of herself on her instagram page.
In 2017, she got the backlash of her life when her fans took her on after posting another saucy picture on Instagram. Her followers and fans chided her to stop the unnecessary posting of pictures and get back into the studio and cook something up as her career was the verge of collapse but truth be told, her career is already dead and long pass the collapsing stage.
Let end with the owner of One Mic Entertainment Okyeame Kwame
There is no word to describe the consistency of hiplife icon, Okyeame Kwame. For more than two decades he had kept his place among the elites in the music world. While new acts, came, conquered and vanished, Okyeame Kwame remained up there, relevant and still made hits after hits. But in the last two years, all the indications are clear that the career of the veteran hiplife artiste is dead or at least on its way down as the law of diminishing returns factor has set in. During his illustrious and enviable career, Okyeame Kwame has won every single award possible at the VGMAs, and holds the record as the only artiste to win the Songwriter of the year three times. But for the last two or three years, not much has been heard of him in terms of music.
All his fans see these days are the beautiful family photos and vacation pictures he posts on his social media pages. He had his time, made some good fortunes and as nature demands, his time at the top is over and his career is as good as dead, the only thing is, he still sees himself as one of the big boys musically.
Even though this may sound harsh and funny, these artistes are no longer relevant or in their prime. In our own local way, we will say their careers are dead. The only problem is that these artistes are yet to realize it as they keep portraying themselves on social media and mainstream media as artistes relevant in the entertainment industry. They are not alone, big guns like Obrafour, Joey B and Stay Jay all have their careers in comatose but are yet to come to terms with the reality on the grounds.