No edition of the Vodafone Ghana Music Awards (VGMA) has ever been held without any form of controversy or blabber and surprisingly, even before the nominations for the 18 edition of the awards are opened – some controversy is being stirred already.
Intriguingly, the person trying to generate some banter is relatively new to the awards, yet to feature in the scheme as a mainstream act and he is the very talented Worlasi.
Talent not in doubt!
First of all, we must pay tribute to his talent. He is a bundle of talent and he comes across as a consummate artist who can sing, rap, play musical instruments and can produce as well.
2016 was an eventful year for Worlasi; grand features with top acts including M.anifest, E.L and Hammer of the Last 2 plus the release of hit singles and a compilation album.
He also commandeered his own show, ‘Nus3’, at the Alliance Francais’ and featured on other major shows including M.anifest’s ‘M.anifestivities’ concert.
Worlasi’s name was predominantly mentioned by most respected portals, music critics and revered industry aficionados as one of the influential new artists for 2016.
Worlasi looks like a very opinionated artist and that could be a good virtue or an undesirable trait that could make or mar his brand – depending on how he articulates such strong opinions.
Expressions of opinions are allowed but Worlasi and his handlers should realize that, he is no longer floundering in the quagmires, he is now a mainstream artist and anything and everything he says is news-worthy and has the potential of shaping his brand.
On the VGMAs: anybody can express their opinion on the awards and Worlasi is free to fire away, no arrests are made when you send ‘shots’ at the scheme – it is allowed!
Is It Pride?
It is interesting that Worlasi tweeted just hours after he did trend on social media and on most blogs about his mention on the BBC.
He probably may have soliloquized; “I am on the radar of BBC, the ‘almighty’ BBC. My name is trending on the international news medium. Who needs VGMA when BBC is watching?”
Boy, sit your tiny behind down! Yes, you need the VGMA.
It is unfathomable how some artists, their fans and some critics still underestimate the influence of the Ghana Music Awards.
If Worlasi, per chance, thinks he doesn’t need the VGMAs at this early stage of his career, he must be acting a ‘fool’ and the earlier he gets off of his high horse, the better for him.
Is it Smartness?
Nominations for the 18th edition of the Awards open next week; it’s 2 to 3 months away to the unveiling of the nominees – and Worlasi knows this. He and his handlers have not even sent their works or picked nominations forms – we guess!
Perhaps, his tweet is his way of sending a message to the Board members that he ought to be in one or more categories, for the stellar works he did in the year under review.
Indeed, he deserves a slot in two or three categories, especially the ‘Best New Artist’ category but if that is the way to get to the Board, we wish him the best of luck!
One of the hallmarks of any good artist is his/her ability to generate attention and to draw positives out of that attention to elevate the brand – however, the matter generating the attention is imperative. Yes, you can trend, get all the headlines but – you must be ready to face the repercussions!
This move from Worlasi could all be in the name of seeking some attention. Again, it is allowed, after all, most music fanatics do not know him or his music, but, in the name of clamouring for that attention, he should thread cautiously not to would relationships and connections that could help him soar quickly and easily.
Worlasi says his fans should not use their credit to vote for him, just in case he is nominated. That is disrespectful to the VGMA and its processes.
For most of the categories, winners are determined via votes from the Board, Academy and the general public, so, if he says his fans should not vote, he means, they should not abide by the processes laid down by the scheme on how to choose winners – the same apparatus used to choose winners for the past 17 editions.
By telling his fans not to ‘waste’ their money to buy credit to vote, Worlasi means, he doesn’t need a win, he doesn’t need the award!
He tells his fans – they should save the money and use it to purchase tickets to his concert. This statement is profound. What he means is this; the VGMAs will not fetch him any revenue. If his fans want to help him get money, they should rather spend at the gates to his concert and not waste it at voting for him at the VGMAs.
Worlasi, you have been well-documented in the last year, thanks to your efforts and the media, which propagated your good works, but don’t be deceived; there are a lot of music-loving Ghanaians who do know zilch about your existence. Relax and build your brand to nationwide recognition.
It is very good that you addressed your fans in your tweet, but wait, how big is your fan base? You think you have enough to generate a movement?
Boy, concentrate on building that fan base; try generating half of SarkNation, Shatta Movement, BhimNation or Efya’s ‘Gingham’ Crew, then, you can think of influencing some lame movement against the VGMAs.
But wait Worlasi, there’s more!
Don’t be fooled by the BBC mention: it is a good thing, no doubt, but bear in mind that, the guys at BBC do not organize shows in Ghana, they do not play songs on Ghanaian radio and they do not influence varied discussions on Ghanaian show business.
The VGMA is an institution which should be handled as such but let’s also understand that, it is made up of human beings who have feelings – they see, hear and listen.
Lastly, concentrate on making good music like you are doing. Build your repertoire, increase the fan base; build your international appeal and your connections and of course, let nature take its path.
Check out Worlasi’s ‘One Life’:
Arnold Asamoah-Baidoo, www.entertainmentgh.com