Originator of Hiplife, Reggie Rockstone, has implied the definition of success lies in the eyes of the successful.
He was reacting to a question by host of Good Evening Ghana Paul Adom Otchere who wanted to know why despite his fame in music, he has not achieved much as some Nigerian artiste like D’banj have done.
“Why should D’banj be more successful than you internationally?” the host asked on last Thursday’s show.
Although Rockstone acknowledged that Nigerian music is ahead of Ghana, he said it doesn’t have to mean their musicians are more successful than him.
Reggie believes an entertainer’s success must not be merely seen in an artiste’s global reach or the amount of money he has. “What is your definition of success?” Reggie responded in his cool, relaxed fashion.
“Cos D’banj has two more cars than me? Not really. They got two books written about me..There is a whole documentary about me”, Rockstone pointed out.
Dapo Daniel Oyebanjo popularly known as D’banj is a Nigerian singer-songwriter, harmonica player, and businessman. He has won several music awards including the awards for Best African Act at the MTV Europe Music Awards 2007, Artist of the Year at the MTV Africa Music Awards 2009 and BET Awards of 2011 for Best International Act: Africa.
D’banj is currently best known internationally for his 2012 summer hit “Oliver Twist”, an up-tempo dance fusion of Afro-Beats and electronic dance music that topped the African charts 2011 and was a top 10 hit in the UK singles chart in 2012 reaching #2 on the UK R&B chart.
Reggie explains that schools in America read his book titled “Living the Hiplife: Celebrity and Entrepreneurship in Ghanaian Popular Music.”
The 344 paged book was written by Jesse Weaver Shipley, Associate Professor of Anthropology at Haverford College and published this year.
The book examines the production, consumption, and circulation of hiplife music, culture, and fashion in relation to broader cultural and political shifts in neoliberalizing Ghana. There is also a documentary produced by the writer to go with the book.
Reggie Rockstone, a 2004 Kora Award winner, did not talk about the other book but said students in American universities study his work.
He continued that D’banj have not added anything unique to his music. “D’banj didn’t create what I do. There is no style that is called D’banj” he said.
He said the Nigerian musician “probably” drew inspiration from Ghana’s hiplife genre and 2face, another popular Nigerian star acknowledges Reggie’s influence in his music.
The popular Ghanaian music icon said he doesn’t have to be popular than D’banj just because he started the hiplife movement.
Using a Twi proverb “man was born to play his part, not to doing everything”, he said everybody must add to what he comes to meet.
Hiplife is a popular music genre in Ghana that mixes hip-hop beat making and rap with highlife music, proverbial speech, and Akan storytelling.
Reginald Osei is a rapper of Ghanaian descent, born in United Kingdom but lived his early years in the United Kingdom. He has been living in Ghana continuously since he pioneered the Hip-Life movement in 1994. He pioneered the Hiplife art form and has played an important role in the development of this uniquely African genre in Ghana’s capital Accra.
In 2004, Rockstone won the Kora Award for the Best African Video and he performed in front of a 50,000 person crowd in Ghana, together with Shaggy.
In 2006 he recorded a track with the Jamaican Dancehall singer Beenie Man called ‘Chukku Chakka’ (in reference to Rockstone’s 1999 hit, ‘Eye Mo De Anaa’, which sampled Fela Kuti).
Reggie Rockstone is the Son of legendary Fashion designer, Ricky ‘Ricci’ Osei (Saint Osei).