Veteran Ghanaian musician Gyedu Blay Ambolley has expressed worry about authentic Ghanaian music not receiving nominations at international awards ceremonies.
Citing the annual Black Entertainment Television (BET) Awards as an example, the musician said the organisers, during nominations, totally ignore highlife, the authentic music genre from Ghana, a situation he finds unacceptable.
He wondered how Stonebwoy got nominated for the Best International Act (Africa) category of this year’s, ceremony for a music genre that is completely alien to Ghanaian music.
Speaking in an interview with Hitz Entertainment News, the ‘Simgwa’ act said “that’s what they see coming out of Ghana so they go by it, nobody has really tried to sit down to put in an experiment to know what it is …because if you talk about Stonebwoy the raps are all the “patois” style. [It] is just like copying the dancehall thing from Jamaica, the beat is still the same format so if he’s going to be nominated out of adapting and copying well then I don’t know what is wrong because if you take highlife, highlife is the tree [of] dancehall, hiplife and all the rest are just branches of that tree but don’t forget at a point in time all the branches fall but the tree still stands”.
Mr Ambolley hammered on the fact that the youth in the music industry have lost their identity as Ghanaians.
When he was asked what exactly the identity was he said “every country has its own identity musically and they stay true to their music. The kids that have come, they are adapting, they are coping [and] they are not learning so how am I going to turn it around for it to become mine…”
“If it’s “patois” they go the same way and the kids cheer them on because most of these DJs are young guys who didn’t come to meet that highlife element. What they met is the “Dancehall” and others so they think that’s what it is”.
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