Nigerian singer Joseph Akinfenwa Donus, popularly known as Joeboy, has responded to fellow artist Burna Boy’s recent statement about the lack of lyrical substance in most afrobeats music.
He made the statement in a recent interview with Apple Music’s Zane Lowe, asserted that most Nigerian artists make music “without substance”.
However, appearing in the latest episode of the Zero Conditions podcast, Joeboy faulted the Grammy-winning singer’s claim.
The host asked: “For you as an afrobeats artist, how much balance do you do with living life because following the conversation of Burna Boy saying [afrobeats] artists don’t have substance, how much experience do you try to garner as an artist?”
Joeboy responded: “I feel everybody has substance. It’s just based on what people relate to. Sometimes when you made a high tempo song that is danceable, people feel like you are just vibing. Or if you don’t sing in English.“I used to see some comments [on social media] because somebody is singing in plain English, they [fans] would be like, ‘Ah pinging!’ What’s pinging? Because he sang in English?“Every artist out there, if you want people to feel like you are an amazing songwriter, just write in plain English. I promise you, they [fans] will be like, ‘Oh! This guys is the best songwriter ever.’ And when someone sings in Pidgin, they [fans] would be like, ‘Ah! This one dey do lamba.’“It’s not lamba. It’s actually still connecting. I understand that you can’t connect to every form of music that you come across. But I promise you, anybody that has the ability to create something out of thin air, it is substance.”