As a creative, there is a lot to learn from Blaqbonez. He argues that a niche sound is good, but variety is better if you are in search of true longevity.
“I want to be one of the guys that when everything's said and done, everybody will always mention me. That's who I want to be. I just don't want to come and pass, make money and just go, and when my time is up nobody cares.”
That was Blaqbonez’s response to Joey Akan’s question about his motivations for what he does. The interview, written during peak lockdown in 2020, takes us past the surface of Blaqbonez’s personality, from something bordering on clownery to something more calculated and masterful. He attributes it all to the quest for greatness; a phenomenon that is usually spoken about loosely, and without root in anything worthwhile. His approach to hip-hop — involving light-hearted braggadocio — stems from an ability to innovate and reinvent himself regardless of circumstance. Blaqbonez is hard to ignore whether you love his music or hate his antics.
He pulled off the latest trick.
in an ever-growing plethora last Wednesday, releasing the video for his latest single “Back In Uni”. The end product was a parody of some significant events that happened recently within the Nigerian music space. Through humorous representation, he provided commentary on the spat between Ruger and BNXN, recreated Wizkid’s “Bad To Me” cover, joined the “Ku Lo Sa” craze pretending to be Oxlade, and even spotted a wig in honor of Ayra Starr’s “Rush”. We experience these events again through Blaqbonez’s eyes and realize how easy it is to make a joke out of anything.
Lockdown in 2020 set up the circumstances that helped Blaqbonez unearth a new marketing strategy for his music. Without shows and on a budget tighter than usual, Blaqbonez found a way out through skits; a simple, yet effective way of building awareness for himself. Social media became his closest friend, plugging his music links under his (and even others’) viral tweets. He constitutes a nuisance, but one that most people love. By design, and by virtue of Twitter’s algorithm, he is almost always in your face.
As a marketing tool, Twitter bridges the gap between the artist and their fans. It is the staple of relatability. Blaqbonez started tapping into that with his promotion tactics for “Haba”, but fully became a creative force to be reckoned with when the time came to release Sex Over Love. In addition to a pivot to a light-hearted approach to hip-hop, he used the shallowness of relationships nowadays to his advantage, crafting a project with mass appeal in the process.
As a creative, there is a lot to learn from Blaqbonez. He argues that a niche sound is good, but variety is better if you are in search of true longevity. Aggressive promotion and visibility are the key ingredients of his success. An epitome of the grass-to-grace story, Blaqbonez’s story is one that highlights that adversity is one of the biggest drivers of innovation.