American music superstar Akon recently performed live in Douala upon the invitation of a major brand. Going by press reports  and testimonies, it was thrilling. This concert adds to a long line of concerts by foreign stars in Cameroon. While their coming has often been hailed as a good thing given that it provides, by ricochet, greater exposure to our own artists, the tide seems to be changing. Is it? It was interesting to read some Cameroonians online decrying the pay package dulled to the opening acts. Some even went ahead to threaten boycotting the concerts of these international superstars who are paid GARGANTUAN sums. While we commiserate with such views, it is worth noting that this trend will only continue. Why? Until, our urban musicians shed mediocrity and start churning hit after hit not only for their regions or sub-divisions but also for Cameroon and the world, they will never be given the financial respect given to guys like Akon. Corporate endorsements and sponsorship aren’t based on sentiments but business. The brands that invite these international stars do so because it makes business sense. How many Cameroonian urban musicians can keep a group interested for an hour? To do that you need not one,two,three or four hits to your name. You need an impressive repertoire as well as stage accessories like choreography and costumes. I know it’s not fair folks but that’s the way of the game. Other factors such as the youth of urban music genres, poverty, apathy and others equally account for this situation. But I think if we’re honest with ourselves we ‘ll see that the problem is mostly our mediocrity or should I say the hitslessness of our urban artists in particular. Feel free to agree or disagree. By the way,I didn’t hear any of the opening acts complain about their dough.

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