There term “beef” has been in music longer than anyone can remember. From my perspective, this “beef” thing might have started from the Hip-Hop genre. In the 90s Hip-hop used to be very violent, with the guns and drugs and of courses the women. Hip-Hop rappers formed gangs and used to rule the streets they lived. Aside the guns and the violence these gangs also used rap to go against each other. It’s believed that Notorious BIG and Tupac Shakur were killed through these rap violence.
Now fast forward, the violence in music has reduced drastically. These days, people just use words to go up against other artistes. Lord Kenya and Obrafour. These two went at it in the late 90s and early 00s. Chicago and Ex-Doe, Asem and Kwaw Kese, Sarkodie and Secure Pabene, Samini and Shatta Wale, Shatta Wale and Criss Waddle, Sarkodie and Manifest. These are just to name a few.
In about the past week or so Yaa Pono and Shatta Wale have been going at it seriously with tracks like “Noko” and “Gbee Naabu” from Yaa Pono and “One man killer “ from Shatta Wale.
You know what enough of all these history and long talk. Like it or not, “beefing” as it is termed has come to be a core part of music. It ignites flames and sometimes brings the best in the artistes. The Sarkodie and Manifest beef brought tracks like “Kanta”, “GodMc” and “100percent.” Whether you will like to believe it or not these tracks were masterpieces from these two rap MCs in Ghana. Though Sarkodie has a lot of followers, a lot of critical thinkers preferred Manifest’s “GodMc” track because it has a lot of “punchlines” as people like say it. Now people ask if these “beef” thing is really a necessary part of music. Personally, I think it is. Why? Well simple, it SELLS. Manifest’s “No Where Cool Album” sold well, because it had a lot of attention.
Now in the Upper West Region, yes you might say these have been a few times Artistes have gone up against each other. Gamebwoy and Gally, Gamebwoy and Rahpius, Gamebwoy and Stunner. Now you will realise that that one name runs through. Now these reports might be false or inaccurate or highly exaggerated but these are a few names that came up. Gamebwoy can probably be likened to Shatta Wale and I doubt that anyone will disagree with me. The “Beef” in the Wa music industry is a bit different than what is generally known.
Now, a broadcaster with Sungmaale FM, DJ Selector shared his thoughts on what “beefing” is. He was of the opinion that “beefing” can be done it two ways: the positive way and the negative way. Explaining what he meant, he said negative beefing is going outside the boundaries of professionalism and talking “thrash” about other artistes. He was of the view that positive “beefing” is a necessary part of the music industry and is inevitable.
Now, personally I think that this whole “beefing” thing is good for business. Although some artistes do not think it through, some others do and it helps their image. Anyone remember “Secure Pabene?” I don’t think anyone does. Years ago he announced himself as the fastest rapper in Ghana and decided to go up against Sarkodie. Obviously that didn’t go to well for him. But some other artistes have been able to sell, improve and become bigger brands through acts of controversy. One person comes to mind, the self-acclaimed Dancehall King, Shatta Wale.
So do I think “Beefing” should be encouraged? YES.
Is it a necessary part of music? YES
But I also believe that everything should be done in a respectable manner. You want to “beef” someone,that fine just don’t let it affect the other artistes relatives and all.
Written by: Mark Kwasi Ahumah Smith
Facebook: Kwasi Ahumah Smith