Sunday, January 17, 2010

Plateau Music Artists and Subcultures

Native Plateau State people are the real Nigerians. Real Nigerians are people who combined the qualities of both northerners and southerners. Yes, we combine these qualities. The northern quality in us is seen in our ability to speak Hausa language in addition to our native languages for which there are more than thirty of them. The southern quality is seen in our liberal lifestyles, something that is rare up here.

When one takes music artists from Plateau State into consideration, one sees that they represent three subcultures.

The first category is seen in native Plateau boys. The languages they use to express themselves when they sing are Hausa, English and their native tongues. Examples are Jeremiah Gyanga and Dach-mo. Artists like P-Square whose parents are of southern Nigerian origin are seen to perform in Pidgin English and their native tongue. While artists like M-I who seem to come from educated parents are strict in their of use English exclusively.

These behaviors are merely an expression of the type of upbringing they had while growing up from boys to men. One thing about native Plateau people is that they find themselves in circumstance where Hausa is the major language of communication. It is generally the situation in this part of Nigeria. Their children thus grow up speaking Hausa which they learnt by virtue of the environment and English which they learn in the classroom. The situation is however changing albeit gradually as most people are beginning to understand that compelling their children to speak English strictly is a way of giving the kids some class. I personally don’t think so. Children should learn the English but also the native languages.

Other Nigerians who came to Plateau from the south are also compelled to speak Hausa language since it is the lingua franca up here. They however speak this outside of their homes. Under a normal situation, this Nigerians don’t speak Hausa to their kids at home however. Instead they speak to them in their own tongues as the children must know where they are coming from.

Education gives people some class. This class is accentuated by the use of English in the home. The children grow up knowing that their parents are different and grow up upholding this class. As a matter of fact the kids are trained that way.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Dachmo: The Next Superstar to Blow the Nation from Jos

Good music must have that feel that keeps music fans coming back. By this, the artist remains relevant in the lives of music fans. If that is true, then the next superstar to come out of Plateau State Central Nigeria, would be Dach-mo, real name Solomon Dachomo. This was the revelation at the Azi Nyako Youth Centre, Dadin Kowa in Jos when his long awaited album, titled the Love Song was dedicated today.

Those charming feels that will keep people coming back to his music are the amazing power in his voice, creativity and his general professionalism. The album is a general embodiment of all these. His style is similar to that of Jeremiah Gyang, a lyrical mix of Hausa and English. This stands the two artists out from others from Jos like, P-square and M-I whose lyrics are either pure or Pidgin English.

Novices are of the opinion that the biggest challenge of making music is just having the talent and being able to write relevant songs. But the additional challenges are also in publicity and distribution. Even the great Bob Marley had this difficulty and had to team up with Tosh and O’Rilley to form the Wailers after his first album could not make it. When he eventually saw the limelight, the first album suddenly started receiving massive airplay. Dachmo says he never had challenges in area of airplay. The biggest challenge he says, is actually in distribution. Right now, he hasn’t got a marketer. Going by the multitude that turned out at the dedication however, there is a good chance that even that seeming obstacle will fizzle out soon.

Dachmo said his music talent was revealed as a kid when he became fond of playing improvised drums in the form of empty Jerry cans, powdered milk containers etc. Eventually he went to stay with one of his close relatives who led a flock at a church, the COCIN, Sarkin Mangu Street in Jos Township, where he had full access to the real drums and mixed with singing groups within church. These events helped him to fully realize how to put his talent to use. Besides being a singer/song writer, he is also a full-fledge drummer now.

He is Berom from Barkin Ladi but who was born and bread within the city of Jos. He was educated at two secondary schools, Tempest Secondary School and GSS Jos, now Sardauna Memorial Secondary School. He later had a diploma in Business Administration at the Plateau State Polytechnic. Not wanting to be left out of the golden bowl of the computer age, he went to ECWA Computers to study Micro Computer Engineering, bagging another diploma. He says he is done with education yet.

He is without any shadow of doubt, the present music maestro in Plateau State and a promise that the state will continue to make its impression felt in the fastest-growing music industry in the world. Take note!

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