Wednesday, 27 April 2016
OLAMIDE SETS NEW RECORD IN NIGERIAN MUSIC INDUSTRY
This week, a partnership that has birthed glorious hit songs in Nigeria for the past two years was restructured. Lil Kesh is no longer signed to Olamide’s YBNL Records. He is a free man, who intends to go ahead and set up his
independent record label “YAGI”.
The news have flowed in, with many unable to see the genius behind the move. Olamide signed Lil kesh in 2014, alongside his friend Viktoh. He never had the intention of holding Lil Kesh for life, hence put pen to paper on a two-year deal. That deal has expired in 2014.
Between his signing and the expiration of his contract, Lil Kesh has been on a jolly ride through life, from unknown rapper, to one-hit champion, to performing all over the world, to label owner. The young man has taken his chance, creating dance music via indigenous rap, being a blessing to his family, and inspiring many others.
Lil Kesh is signed to Olamide's YBNL Nation. (Press)
Lil Kesh now has to set up his personal record label, which will operate from his house in Lagos. That house already has a studio, which is the prerequisite for creating a record label. The music has to be constant, and the management on point. He is still affiliated to Olamide’s YBNL, but in a management cvapacity.
On the business side, very few things have changed. The digital publishing revenue will have to be rerouted to YAGI, YBNL still gets a new percentage from all earnings, although, they will have to relinquish a major share of the profits from his career. Lil Kesh still retains the mentorship of Olamide, who is reliving his come-up story with the boy.
In similar manner, Olamide released the album “YBNL” in 2012, and split with his mentor and Coded Tunes label boss, ID Cabasa. His personal venture, has become the powerhouse that YBNL is. Lil Kesh is running along similar lines, dropping his debut album “Y.A.G.I”, before setting up his personal record label.
YBNL rapper, Lil Kesh (GQ234)
With this new arrangement Olamide has created a new precedent for Nigerian music business structure. Find artistes, groom them, whoever becomes successful, should be groomed to be independent, just as long as they can generate funding for their projects. This business plan depends heavily on the artiste becoming successful within a short period of time.
As far as the love shared between both parties is concerned, nothing is lost. Lil Kesh is his younger brother, one whom he has seen blossom right in front of him. That is pure joy, the kind that nothing else can bring, (Except a million dollar alert). Whether Lil Kesh stays or departs is immaterial. Lil Kesh can set up his side project. In fact, it is folly for him not to set one up, as a personal side hustle to bring in extra dough, while planning for his future. Olamide’s mentorship and connection would also be of immense value to such a venture.
Truth is, in whatever form you look at it, in whatever way the story is being framed and sold, Lil Kesh and Olamide cannot leave each other.