Exclusive: 2face, M.I and Others Are The Shining Stars on Buckwyld ‘n’ Breathless

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Gbedu magazine reveals exclusively that even though there were two headliners for the show, it was M.I who was surprisingly the most impressive on the night.
 
The almost forgotten man reminded us all why we truly believed when he called himself ‘African Rapper Number 1’.
 
Now if M.I’s performance was energetic and full of life, 2face’s set list seemed strangely low key and off.
It was billed to be the biggest concert of the year headlined by the two of the biggest Nigerian musicians, 2face Idibia and M.I Abaga and boy, did the delivery.
 
Yes, it started very late but when you have been so blessed by the musical ingenuity on how on Sunday night, one is grateful for the opportunity alone.
 
Andre Blaze was an excellent host on the night, saying just enough to enable a smooth segue to the next performer. And it didn’t matter if the performers were the much lesser known stars like that opened the show; the short black boy took us way back to the commercial hits that made him so popular; performing songs like ‘Action Film’ and ‘Short Black Boy’.
Even though there were two headliners for the show, it was M.I who was surprisingly the most impressive on the night. The almost forgotten man reminded us all why we truly believed when he called himself  ‘African Rapper Number 1’
 
Decked out in a sequinned black tuxedo, the short black boy took us way  back to the commercial hits that made him so popular; performing songs like ‘Action Film’ and ‘Short Black Boy’.
 
And when it was time to perform ‘Teaser’, there was a lap dance for him and his chief choreographer, a twerking session and some energetic dancing.
 
M.I even had to gall to bring out his former long-time foe, Kelly Handsome, who also performed his solitary hit single ‘Maga Don Pay’.
 
Maybe it was the live band that played on stage throughout, or something else, but M.I’s performance seemed like it has hit a new level. Like M.I felt he has a point to prove.
 
 
Waje first treated us to some vocal gymnastics with ‘I Wish’ and then absolutely killed it when she partnered M.I on ‘One Naira’; another artiste who seemed to outdo him/herself on the night was Waje.
 
The singer was absolutely glorious on the night even for only the 10 minutes she spent on stage. She first treated us to some vocal gymnastics with ‘I Wish’ and then absolutely killed it when she partnered M.I on ‘One Naira’. Queen!
 
But M.I wasn’t done. Like a true hip hop professional, he paid tribute to the Nigerian hip hop pioneers who had laid the path he is now treading; bringing out Ruggedman to perform his ‘Baraje’ hit.
 
The climax of M.I’s performance was when he brought out virtually all of the Chocolate City group; Ice Prince, Jesse Jagz, Nosa and then Djinee. They got the entire crowd singing and rapping along to their hits such as ‘Nobody Test Me’ and ‘Chocolate’. It felt almost like the Choc Bois never even went apart for a day.
 
Now if M.I’s performance was energetic and full of life, 2face’s set list seemed strangely low key and off.
 
Don’t get me wrong. If any other artiste on the continent had performed the way he did, it would probably be the best performance of that artiste’s career. But this is 2Baba we are talking about. A pop star who is renowned for delivering the best musical performances on stage.
 
While M.I’s set list seemed planned, that of 2face seemed haphazard. Vector came up to perform ‘Shiga’ somewhere in the middle of it all and seemed out of place. Even Cobhams coming up to play some songs on the piano seemed like an afterthought.
 
The duet with Tanzanian Vanessa Mdee seemed like a corporate exercise; they had sang together on Coke Africa. Few people, if any in the hall had heard of her and they registered that by beginning to trickle out while they performed.
 
There were some good parts of his show though. Bringing up the late OJB’s son,  Ayokunle Okungbowa, to perform his father’s ‘Searching’ was a nice touch. And the young man didn’t disappoint, delivering a vocal performance his father would have been proud of.
 
Maybe it was organisational issues but it felt like 2face was dialling it in, doing only the required minimum. He performed only a handful of his numerous hits, he brought on Sound Sultan for a reason we are still not sure of, and his set ended rather abruptly with his duet with the Tanzanian lady.
 
It was billed to be the biggest concert of the year headlined by the two of the biggest Nigerian musicians, 2face Idibia and M.I Abaga and boy, did it deliver.
As reductive as it might seem, this performance might begin to raise questions about 2face and his – to this point – stellar career. Especially when you remember he hasn’t released a hit single or album in years.
 
Has he become too corporate for us with his many brand endorsements? Is his career plateauing? Is marriage and fatherhood slowing him down? Is this the best version of 2face we would ever see?
 
No matter what comes next,  2face will be one of the greatest African musicians of this century and maybe of all time. We only hope and pray he can take it to the next level soon.

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