ARTICLE: Where are Hausa Rappers on the Charts? – By Paul McPetros

The guys in Lagos would soon hijack Hausa Hip Hop (if there is any). 

I listened to 'Uwaka' by The Lost & Found (Boogey x Paybac) from their last album, Alternating End and I loved what I heard. The eMCees did the usual with an extra par excellence heavyweight bars delivered English language while the hook was delivered in Hausa language. That got the whole of my attention. 

I'm from Northern Nigeria where vital few of the eMCees are bilingual or want to be bilingual. They rap in English and Hausa language. But some do so in doubt. The thought of the possibility of penetrating the music industry in Lagos rapping in Hausa language have made some of the eMCees to stick to rapping in English language. Where as, their contemporaries in the South Western and South Eastern Nigeria are rapping in their indigenous language.

With love, hope and faith in the Arewa Culture, eMCees like BOC, ClassiQ, DJ AB and other eMCees scattered around the cities of Kaduna, Jos, Bauchi, Gombe and Yobe have made up their minds to propagate the Arewa Culture through rap music.

The face of the franchise for the Arewa Hip Hop at the moment is ClassiQ followed closely by the likes of BOC, Kheengz, DJ AB and Lyrically Dr. Smith. ClassiQ was opening acknowledged by MI Abaga as the King of the North during a Jam Session at the CCX Lounge in Abuja. 

In my opinion, ClassiQ won the heart of the industry after the released of Vector's King Kong remix. His delivery was top notch. I remembered in 2015, I was in Ibadan doing an internship with a radio station when the song hit the air waves. People who knew I was from the North then asked if I knew ClassiQ and I said yes.

Outside Arewa especially in the music industry in Lagos, ClassiQ seems to be the most talk about Arewa eMCee because of the following reasons: He has an affiliation with Chocolate City Music (CC Music). ClassiQ has a deal with Up North Records, a subsidiary of CC Music. He featured MI Abaga on a song 'Gudu' from his previous LP. Despite these successes, ClassiQ is not doing the numbers required of him. He's not in the conversation, he's not on the charts. Stories from the street has it that, ClassiQ had to move from Lagos to Abuja to find a market for music.

Rapping in Hausa language is not a new thing in Nigerian Hip Hop. eMCee like Edris Abdualkareem, Morell and others were  forerunners for the Arewa Culture and they have done great. The problem with the Hausa rappers is longevity and consistency. They are a flash in the plan that last only a short time. They might be dominating their immediate environments which is required of them but their impacts and influence in the Nigerian Hip Hop community is slim.

The 13th Headies nomination list with 23 categories has been announced and the eMCees of the Arewa United are not on the list.

It is worthy of mention that Terry Tha Rapman, one of the foremen that has being holding it down for the culture has a new rap song titled Jan Wuya (Sani Abacha) and the hook was delivered in Hausa language by DJ Cinch, the featured artiste. 

With this silver lining in the cloud, the god of rap is about to revolutionize Hausa Rap in Nigeria. But the true custodians of the culture must guide it jealously. The have the numbers and the resources. Look at the city of Jos. Jos gave the Nigerian Hop Hop MI Abaga, Jesse Jagz and Ice Prince. Let's call it the JTown Exodus.

The city of Jos has the resources: human, captial, land, entrepreunership (think of it) to be the next entertainment hub after Lagos in Nigeria. I can't wait for it to happen.

The city of Kaduna is not an expectation. It is said to be the capital of Hip Hop in Nigeria. It has produced Nigerian finest eMCees of all times.

So, the future is bright for Hausa Rappers to create a dent in the Nigerian Hip Hop Culture before then efforts have to be made to push Hausa Rap into the mainstream. This can be achieve through capital Investment, creativity, collaborations and strategic communications.

Written by Paul McPetros, a Music Business wannabe Executive.

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