Few weeks ago and in this same column, I wrote a piece about the top five events that I was looking out for in the festive season. This is because December is classified as a month for all kinds of events in Ghana.
In no particular order, I mentioned the Back in the Day Concert, organised by Empire Entertainment as well as the Night of 1021 Laughs and Music, a Charterhouse event.
The Girl Talk Concert with Efya was also on my list, Ghana Rocks also organised by Charterhouse and Akwaaba UK and Citi FM’s Decemba To Rememba completes the five events that I looked forward to and which I also advised readers to look out for.
In all fairness, it’s very important that, I take my time and talk about the events and how they went in respect to my expectation and that of many others.
Back In The Day Concert with Sisqo, others
This is a concert aimed at bringing back old school artistes mostly from the hiphop, soul, hiplife, and crank genres, whose works have stood the test of time, on one stage.
I consider myself as a proper old school person, so it would have been unheard of for me to have missed this show which was geared towards reminiscing with old school musicians and their songs.
This show, headlined this year by Sisqo and his R&B group, Dru Hill, and supported by Ghanaian musicians such as Akatayie, Daasebre Gyamena, Obour, Asaase Aban, Scizo, Nana Quame, was a great event to start with.
All the performances from the headline artistes to the local artistes, especially Obour were top notch.
What however took some shine off the show has to do with the attendance which wasn’t as encouraging as the organisers would have hoped for.
As the third edition, it fell short when compared to the two previous editions, especially the maiden edition headlined exclusively by local artistes.
With many events around town, patrons decided to use their monies for other shows rather than this one. The not so encouraging turnout could mean that, the headliners didn’t have a great following in Ghana. Perhaps the story would have been much different had the show inlcuded artistes like R. Kelly or even Snoop Dogg.
Maybe, it will not be out of place to modify the concept of the show to include one current hit-making musician to help in bringing numbers to the show. It was painful that a huge concert such as this failed to attract patrons.
In terms of publicity, this year’s show had a great publicity drive employing different forms of publicity tactics, yet it failed to translate this into numbers. It will be disturbing should the organisers decide to put the brakes on the show.
Girl Talk Concert with Efya
Before Efya headlined the show last year, Becca had headlined it for three years. For three years, Becca hosted the show dubbed Girl Talk Concert, an all-girl event where no men were allowed.
She made it her own to the point where people believed she owned the right to the concert. Actually, she was simply the face of the concert, the brainchild of her former manager, Kiki Banson of EKB
Records, who also runs Palm Media, organisers of the concert.
I’m not the type of person who encourages silly and needless comparison among artistes but anyone who thought the concert had died because it was no longer Becca headlining it should have been there to see Efya. She took the concert a notch higher with her interactive and seductive performance style.
The low moment was when some media personnel were harassed and embarrassed by security personnel at the programme. When you are organising a show meant exclusively for female audience, yet you go ahead to invite male media personnel, it is important to brief them on what to expect at the show rather than leave them in the hands of some security men to manhandle.
It was even difficult to blame the security personnel who were only doing their job according to what they have been instructed by the organisers.
However, the same organisers failed to tell the media men they invited that, there were no seats made available for them and that they had to be on their feet throughout the show.
Nothing whatsoever was communicated to the media people, they were simply invited in their capacity as ‘come and watch and report on it’, yet they were embarrassed and sacked from the seats, which they were informed were only reserved for ladies.
The painful part was when Kiki was unable to arrest the situation, saying that, no man had the right to a seat when clearly he who issued the directives had not told any of the media men about it.
How about just inviting only female media personnel to the event in subsequent years? It won’t be bad at all. Or? Regardless of that little mishap and miscommunication, the Girl Talk with Efya was really a great concert and a great entrance for Efya.
Citi FM’s Decemba To Rememba
Among other reasons, I was looking out for this show because it’s the only show with a strict dress code of white top and blue jeans. Unfortunately, I was only in the auditorium for less than five minutes and had to return home.
I think it’s very disrespectful when a media house organises an event and goes ahead to repeat the mistakes of most event organisers. Ticket were oversold. Really?
The auditorium was full to capacity with people having to stand on their feet for the duration of the show. It was even difficult to meander through the crowd. It was such a difficult and terrible situation.
Even though the auditorium was full, there were still many people outside buying tickets and making their way to the auditorium.
I was surprised and asked a friend who works at Citi FM why their people are still selling the tickets and allowing people to come in when the place was over congested. His answer was disappointing. He said “Eben, I don’t know”.
As I was leaving, I saw a National Security Personnel stationed there who had gone to check the auditorium ordering them to close the main gate and not allow anybody in again.
As I was leaving, I felt sorry for the people outside with tickets but obviously not going in. Very shameful!
Ghana Rocks was called off. I was unable to attend the Night of 1021 Laughs and Music since I was in Kumasi for the Bukom Banku and Ayittey Powers second bout.
From what I have gathered, the Ghanaian comedians on the night were at their best. Kudos to them. Happy New Year!
By Ebenezer Anangfio / Graphic Showbiz