Nigerian singer, Olawale Ashimi, popularly known as Brymo has said musicians who “suddenly” leave their craft for politics are “thieves”.
The singer stated this in an interview with Sahara TV at the recently concluded 2018 Ake Books and Arts Festival. According to Brymo, musicians have many issues to address within the entertainment industry, and should focus on that, rather than “suddenly dumping music for politics”.
His words: “I think it is a very difficult move in the sense that there are years invested in every industry. So, you’ve been a musician for 10 to 15 years, and suddenly you dump that to go and become a politician and run for office. You’re just a thief, because there are issues in the entertainment industry you can take part in to fix. Why do you have to run for public office? There are things you can do as a musician in your own music industry and make things better there. If you cannot make things better there, how are you going to make things better in public office?
“I believe everybody should stay in their lane. Let musicians be musicians and let politicians be politicians; let everybody do their job. I have invested 15 years in music and I have no intention to throw all that away for another career. This is my career; this Brymo. I feel everybody should treat their music that way and leave politics alone for politicians.”
Brymo, who recently released his debut novel entitled ‘Oriri’s Plight’, eulogised the late Afrobeats maestro, Fela Anikulapo Kuti as the greatest musician whose music was not appreciated until he died.
“A lot of our parents were like ‘don’t listen to Fela’s music’. The government says ‘don’t go to Kalakuta Republic’. Everyone was against him and now everybody says he is the greatest. Same thing applies to us; you can not quantify what we are doing right now until when it is done. When the next generation gets here, then they will say these people did something that was amazing. Right now, the story is being told.
“I don’t think there is any need for comparison, because we have had more of the most skillful Nigerians now than then. There are a lot of amazing, talented people, but have we been able to show, to come out, to be bold like they were? Not so much. However, skill-wise, I think we’ve been able to match the last generation. But we need to show more buzz; we need to take the initiative and be musicians,” he said.