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We’re all Afrobeats artistes – Rema tells colleagues amid genre controversy

Ace musician, Divine Ikubor professionally known as Rema, has said regardless of whatever genre Nigerian singers call their musical styles, they will all still come together under the Afrobeats category for award shows.

The ‘Bounce’ hit maker stated this while receiving his award for Best Male Artiste of the Year at the 2023 Headies Awards in Atlanta, USA, on Sunday.

Rema said; “I must say it is very important that I should let everyone know that I’m not here because of the awards. I’m here because it is important to support our institutions. And when I said institutions, I mean the bodies that support you to be able to achieve these major successes; the media houses, award organisers, you know.

“We are in a very sensitive period if we don’t give our attention to our institutions, we will miss this chance that we have. And we will never have this chance again.

“Be it afrorave, afro this, afro that, last last, we go jam for afrobeats award. So, this is our chance. We [afrobeats artists] are not the first to do it. Reggae has done it before.”

His comment comes on the heels of backdrop of Burna Boy dissociating himself from the afrobeats tag on the grounds that it “lacks substance.”

In an interview with Apple Music’s Zane Lowe, the ‘Last Last’ hit-maker asserted that 90 percent of Afrobeat songs which is mostly domiciled in Nigeria“lack substance and real-life experience”.

The self-proclaimed African Giant who noted that the genre is “literally nothing” spoke about the need for artistes to embody real-life experiences of their songs.

Burna Boy said; “Because of where I am from. The sh*t I have to go through to maneuver and just stay with my crown on my head. (It is harder for people that know you best to love you the most). Because they do not know you best. You just think they do.

“When you start going around the world and you start seeing that there are actually motherf**kers that know me a lot than the people that share the same (not experience)… because 90 per cent of them [Nigerian musicians] have no real life experiences which is why most of Nigerian music or African music or afrobeats as people call it, is mostly about nothing, literally nothing.

“It is why you hear most of Nigerian music or Afrobeats as people call it, is mostly about nothing. Literally nothing. There is no substance to it. Like nobody is talking about anything. It is just a great time. It is an amazing time. But at the end of the day, life is not an amazing time.”

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