AfricaMusicOnline Lagos Correspondent, Ayotunde Olumilua makes a brilliant analysis
Davido versus Wizkid. This is an endless debate that has raged on and on for several years, a debate that was further intensified with the recent release of Davido’s album. With the meteoric rise of Burna Boy in recent years, the debate has become a three-way street. But what has this new Davido project proven? Why does he have to prove himself in the first place?
Nigerian popstar Davido has released his highly-anticipated third studio album ‘A Better Time’ to the elation of his fans. The feature list on the 17-track album features some of the biggest names in the global music industry, with international stars Nicki Minaj, Chris Brown, Nas, Lil Baby and Young Thug all making an appearance, along with Nigerian and African stars including Tiwa Savage, Sauti Sol, Mayor Kun and Bella Shmurda.
The album has reached the number one spot on the Nigeria iTunes top albums chart, with Davido joining Wizkid and Burna Boy as the only Nigerian acts to earn multiple top 10 albums on US iTunes, according to Chart Data. Two hours after the album’s release at midnight on Friday 14th November 2020, Davido sent out this fairly jubilant tweet: “Worked so hard on ABT !! Lemme know what tracks y’all love!! THANK YOU FOR THE LOVE!!!!!!!!!!!! IM SO HAPPY!!!”
The album was lauded by his fans, who praised the album’s production and radio-worthy melodies on Twitter and other social media platforms.
In a year, that has seen major releases from Wizkid, Burna Boy, and Davido, it was always inevitable for comparisons to arise. In recent years, Burna Boy joined the conversation of who the best is in the Nigerian pop circle. So far, Burna Boy is the only one out of them to get a Grammy nomination, but all of them have done well in grabbing the attention of the musical world audience. Wizkid, who is the oldest of them, has been around for a while, and many are left to wonder how long he can continue considering how long he has flourished in the game.
As for Davido, he continues to prove that he has what it takes to stand his ground in an increasingly competitive industry despite criticisms of his vocal range and content. Perhaps, the resentment for his musical persona may come from the feeling that he had an easier route to fame considering his affluent background (unlike Burna Boy and Wizkid who had relatively humble backgrounds), or maybe his use of ghostwriters (something he has never been ashamed to admit).
Ultimately, the positives from these debates and drama is that they create an air of anticipation around the release of their music, which leads to increases in their sales and streams. Conflict is a commodity; one just has to know when conflict is beneficial and who to have the conflict with.
Well, I personally feel we should just forget about who the best is and just enjoy their music while they’re still in their prime. There’s enough sky for all the birds to fly.