A couple of years ago, in one of my weekly write-ups, I called on Nigerian musicians in an article entitled Nigerian musicians and their lyrics, I urged them to begin to sing on those issues that could help transform the society. I was very definite.
Without doubt, before few years ago, Nigerian artistes concentrated on only love as the main thrusts of their lyrics. Hardly can any musician sing any one complete track without relating his lyrics to issues of love, marriage, kissing, making love, including singing some what could be considered to be socially condemnable lyrics. Most of the younger musicians were very deeply guilty of this brand of releases. They hardly sing on those issues which can transform the menace in the society including election riggings, corruption, kidnapping, unemployment including the stealing of people’s mandate by some political leaders. In fact, in that article, I cited the case of the Senegalese artiste, who turned things around in his country with one set of lyrics. In fact, he brought about almost an earthquake in his country’s political environment.
Honestly, one is often disgusted with some of the most immoral and vulgarous lyrics which some of our musicians dish out on daily basis for which the regualtor authorities have remained either non challant or merely compromising their authority by allowing these young singers to be feeding the society with immoral and vulgarous lyrics such as ‘’onyenwe pant noniro’’ ukwunka wu orobo, ukwu nwanyi Owerri, etc, these lyrics, to say the least are merely promoting immorality in the society.
Fortunately, the middle age artistes have suddenly come to have a change of heart. Recently, I listened to one track by Onye Nze Nwa Amobi na ogidi from Anambra ‘’overtaking is allowed.’’ If we listen to that track carefully and patiently, it has a lot of good messages for the society. Among some of the lyrics is ‘’naghi akwu na line akpata ego’’ meaning richness can come to anybody and at anytime.’’ Etc.
However, what attracted me most and made impact in my literary psyche is the one entitled ‘’over taking is allowed.’’
The full meaning of that lyrics could be found in our everyday life and activities with examples so glaringly numerous.
This lyric reminds us of what we know in Public Relations Profession as ‘’lead forging.’’ In fact these two phrases are similar and have relevant in every aspect of social, economic and political life.
There is one short story that can explain this concept of ‘’overtaking is allowed’’ more precisely. It is a story of race between a dog and a toad. At a certain time, a dog is selected to do a race in favour of animals because the animal world believed that since a dog does fact race and could go a long distance, she was selected to do the competitive race on behalf of the other animals. The price for the winner was very attractive and highly priced. On the other hand, those other creatures in the family of reptiles decided to select toad to do the race ontheir behalf believing that ‘’slow and steady’’ would win the race. When the animal kingdom learnt that the race would be between a dog and a toad, the animals celebrated their victory before the contest ridiculing the toad to compete with a dog in a competitive race.
Once the whistle was blown for the race to begin, the dog, as expected zoomed off. In a twinkle of an eye, the dog had done almost half the race while the toad began hopping. To the spectators, it was clear that the dog would get to the finishing line first thus winning the price for the animals.
However, after the dog had done few lines while the toad was still hopping steadily without a stop, the dog stopped and went into the bust to look for excrement to eat, believing that before the toad could cover half of the distance which be difficult for it to cover.
Unfortunately, by the time the dog came out of the bush to resume the race, the toad had outpaced the dog and had maintained the same speed without stooping.
The dog came out of the bush and noticed that the toad was in front; she resumed running and soon overtook the toad to the delight of the spectators. Again, having outpaced the toad, the dog once again went into the bush to resume searching for something to eat to keep her going. This time, she spent more time.
To the greatest shock to all the spectators, by the time the dog came out the toad had hopped to the finishing line and won the price to the admiration of reptiles and to the shame of other animals because of the shame which the dog had put on their faces. While the reptiles were cheering and celebrating, instead of the dog to accept the defeat in good faith, she began to bark at the spectators and attempted even to scare them way by trying to even bite her fellow animals that were angry with her.
Of course, this short story has obvious moral lesson to the effect that ‘’ overtaking is allowed’’ and that it is not always the fastest runner that wins the race but most consistent runner that does slow and steady running that is likely to win the race.
Thus in many human activities, those who began earlier but dropped out to take care of this or that may fall by the way side. Even in politics, those who began on time to print posters, display banners, produce special t-shirts, began consultation and make arrangements for an election that may be way off may not necessarily be the ones that may win the race depending on one’s strategic options. While those who may began much latter but maintain the attitude of ‘’slow and steady’’ strategy may likely win the race. Because those who began early may be over whelmed with initial noise making and its impact which is sometimes too ephermeral may in fact, not likely to win the race.
Without doubt, human life is full of unpredictabilities due to emerging societal circumstances. And these intervening variables often come out to influence any competition or race of whatever ever kind.
However, it must be stated that those who fail to plan have planned to fail. Can we learn anything from these?
According to the biblical injuction “those who has ears to hear let them hear.”
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