Why concerts aimed at mass turn out still have a long way to go in Nigeria - The Native

Why concerts looking for a mass turn out still have a long way to go in Nigeria

In the aftermath of Olamide’s OLIC4, fan reports have lauded the event as a well thought out first time trial for Olamide who has prides himself as being capable of pulling all of Lagos under one YBNL event. Olamide’s top level influence, however was not s ohhh to help the rapper’s actual desired goal: To sell out a stadium. Though the event was packed with a live and energetic audience (perhaps dues to the free energy drinks that were handed out during the show) in the centerfield, the stands were filled with only patches of people with a bulk of the seats left unoccupied. The longing question is how did Olamide beat down ticket prices, have Lagos state support and countless sponsorships on his roster, but still fail to completely shut down the Teslim Balogun stadium.

In a country like Nigeria, where events of such scale are a rarity or otherwise, packaged and delivered by corporations with a big marketing spend, a few things can be naturally fingered as the reason OLIC was not as successful as projected. One particular reason no one can ignore is the bad press that trailed Phyno’s Phyno Fest, a concert that held in Enugu a month earlier, with the same vision Baddo had for OLIC4. According to reports from fans who attended Phyno Fest this year, what would have been a smooth concert going experience was deterred by various claims of harassment, rape, robbery and assault. In fact, the claims were so severe that some of the victims were forced out of silence by Phyno’s seeming obliviousness to the atrocities that went on during his show.

The rapper finally took to social media yesterday to address the some of the concerns citing the availability of security forces as well as the arrest of a few who were found guilty of abhorrent behaviour at the venue. Phyno also assured that there are ongoing investigations to weed out the culprits. While all of the above sounds great, there was no comment from the rapper on reaching out to the victims nor did he apologize for the late response, even though news about the atrocities that took place started making social media rounds almost immediately after the concert.

Agreed, it might be unrelated to the fact that both Phyno and Olamide serve a relatively more indigenous crowd, but it was unsurprising that some of the bad press from Phyno Fest was reflected on OLIC4 on social media as the concert day inched closer.

Because large scale concert require public trust, artists need to show a better ability to manage the crowd while also availing security measures to protect fans who paid for a good time from experiencing the opposite of that. Phyno Fest 2017 is an indication of how far Nigerian concert organizers still have to go in terms of delivering a hitch free concert, so concerts like OLIC4, where an array of security forces from different departments were available for both crowd control and protection, do not get the brunt of concerts that did nought.

Featured Image Credits: pmnewsnigeria


You are meeting Debola at a strange time in his life. He wandered into a dream and lost his way back. Tweet at him @debola_abimbolu


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