This tweet from Ogaga Sakpaide was the first in a volley of tweet from many music industry insiders about the veracity of a number of end of year lists from prominent industry music journalists.
Una don dey beef inside music journalism.
Like you people are using strong words and claiming elder ontop music journalism?
— Ogagus (@Ogagus) December 22, 2019
Actually, it was primarily triggered by one list, Pulse.NG recently put out a list of the top 10 rap albums of the year compiled by Motolani Alake. Conspicuously absent from that list, was Erigga New Money’s The Erigma II released late 2019 to acclaim. New Money considered this a snub and took to Twitter to not express his displeasure but also throw some very pointed accusations.
All dis @PulseNigeria247 people Na office dem de sit down morning till night for Lagos most don’t know what’s going on outside Lagos. dem No Born who write that list to come recite am for south , east or the northern part of Nigeria say Erigga dint make a good album
— Erigga (@erigganewmoney) December 22, 2019
Even managers got involved.
How many media houses will go to WARRI to cover Erigga’s show December 26th? That’s going to be one of the biggest shows in Nigeria. Y’all do your job, if you no wan do am, admit am, no dey yan anyhow like authority
— Mayowa “Isíagu” Balogun (@Sweeegu) December 22, 2019
Make una try reduce the clout chasing small for 2019 abeg. Sorry for yourself small my brother.
— Obinna Agwu (@d_angrymob) December 23, 2019
Joey Akan weighed in, with a thread that sought to explain the real reason why Erigga Money who believed the Pulse best rap albums list of the decade was defective was actually ire at not being extended the same privileges he saw other rappers enjoy. (full disclosure Joey worked for Pulse and still has strong ties to the organization.
“Erigga is dope Erigga is dope.”
Yes. But he is plagued by small-man syndrome. He’s that guy that the fringes root for, or insiders champion to sound like they have their fingers on the music.
But ask them, to name one of his hits, you will begin to hear crickets.
— Joey Akan (@JoeyAkan) December 23, 2019
At some point, even M.I had to weigh in, supporting Erigga Money.
No Erigga disrespect will be allowed!!
— Yung denzL (@MI_Abaga) December 23, 2019
So whose report do we believe?
Is this new feud between Pulse and Erigga indicative of the larger pool of distrust between artistes and the media teams that cover and provide criticism on their work?
Is the problem that these reviews and criticisms are largely subjective?
There are a lot of questions that need answering in 2020.
Edwin Okolo is an author and journalist who has worked with YNaija, TheNativemag and the Naked Convos.