In the early days, Cameroonian music was a reference in Africa and the world. But recently, Cameroon has witnessed an invasion of foreign music, the most dominant being Nigeria and Ivory Coast, replacing local music. As such, the Cameroonian music tries so well that to recover is a task not easy enough. As recently revealed by Queenirole Johnson, a fast-growing Cameroonian YouTuber, the main cause of this musical paralysis is because Cameroonians don’t support their artists.
One big mistake an artist could ever make is dressing inappropriately. In fact, dressing code is used in different spheres to define an individual’s personality. Whether or not you agree, your fans are always making judgments based on your appearance. This was the case of a recent social media rage from Cameroonians complaining that Mr. Leo has a reputation for bad fashion choices.
Last year, talks about Mr. Leo’s poor dressing and wardrobe malfunctions created more buzz on social media. But the Alpha Better Records singer has since paid a deaf ear to these criticisms.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. This simple photo of producer/singer Salatiel and Mr. Leo have produced what seems like a thousand words from fans and people who saw the photo which had people all stirred up and talking.
Queenirole, in one of her recent videos argues that it is misleading for Cameroonians to expect their artists to dress well when in fact, they don’t support them. According to her, hardly do Cameroonians buy music CDs from these artists nor purchase their songs on iTunes or other platforms where they upload their music. Plus, Cameroonians hardly buy artists’ tickets to their concerts.
Putting the money part aside, the views on some of these songs on YouTube which are usually free to watch, are painfully discouraging.
Cameroonians don’t support their artists enough
Cameroonians consider local songs not to be good enough. This attitude helps kill the creativity of our artists. We don’t support our musicians enough to create unique tunes for the Cameroonian music market.
In his second visit to Cameroon on March 17, 2018, Nigerian music giant, Davido had a few words of advice to the Cameroonian public which was for them to learn to encourage, uplift and support their local music stars.
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@davidoofficial sends out a strong message to all Cameroonians that they should learn to support their home based musicians, "coz every artists in Cameroon should be world wide because your music is beautiful" Thats why the naija guy says, "the only people i know in Cameroon are Samuel Eto'o and Stanley Enow "🤔 _____________ #dcodedtv #team237 #DavidoinCameroon #30billionafricatour #cameroon #davido #sonymusiciv #IconProdAfrica
Besides, the Cameroonian media do not play enough local music. The music channel Boom TV which was supposed to play more Cameroonian songs is, however, focused on playing more of Nigerian and American tracks.
Nightclubs, snack bars, etc, have also proven to be fond of Nigerian, Ivorian and American music. Yet, we have local artists such as Mr. Leo, Locko, Stanley Enow, Jovi, Charlotte Dipanda, Daphne, etc, who are able to compete successfully with foreign artists.
Over the years, Cameroonians themselves have grown to prefer more foreign music to local music. The concerts of the foreigners are filled to burst compared to the concerts of locals. The so-called cultural promoters reduce the local artists to beggars by offering him misery for a concert and millions to a foreigner for the same concert in the country.
Artists are the cause of their own paralysis
Notwithstanding, the artists themselves are primarily responsible. “When people vibe to songs from these artists and send over to them to repost, they, however, feel like they’re too big and busy to repost certain things,” Queenirole says. This is a sharp contrast to what artists from other countries do. Until Cameroonian artists learn to work with other artists, growing might be a difficult task for the industry. Like Queenirole says, “helping another person grow will not dim your shine.”
Actors have also often times, voiced out their frustration about musicians not willing to show support to movie events or anything that has to do with films except they are being paid.
“There’s no music without film and there’s no film without music. We are like one hand washing the other… I don’t really care if actors don’t support or they support; musicians not coming for whatever. For me, it’s just all about the music staying positive. It is hard for everybody but we just have to be there for each other,” actor Epule Jeffrey tells Dcoded TV.
The Cameroonian music industry is not strong enough to compete with the outside world, because Cameroonians don’t support their artists. But these artists themselves are selfish, greedy, they don’t collaborate, or support each other. With all these, how could the Cameroonian music get high in the world?