The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the music
industry, mirroring its impacts across all arts sectors. Numerous music
events, including music festivals, concert tours, award shows, and the
like were cancelled or postponed. While some musicians and composers
were able to use the time to create new works, there were flow on
effects on the many supporting people who relied on performers for their
Several musical artists delayed the releases of albums due to the
pandemic. The Record Store Day, which would have seen the release of
several re-issues and exclusive material, was rescheduled from April 18
to June 20. In contrast, some musical acts moved up the release dates of
their upcoming albums. Others released new albums with little or no
However, for internationally acclaimed and Nickelodeon & BET
Winner| 3-Time Best Reggae/Dancehall Act in Africa; Stonebwoy, although
the consequences of the global pandemic are extreme, he did not let his
will shimmer as this year, by far, is the best season for him to cement
his status and redeem all priceless accolades received from notable and
high profile personalities (both within the creative arts sector and
cooperate region) as an entertainer, thus far, rejuvenating the zeal in
Stonebwoy locked the whole Country this year with music. He commenced
2020 with Sobolo and his globally acclaimed compilation dubbed Anloga
Junction the Album came through and now ending the year with Putuu
Freestyle and Good Morning Remix. He has utilized available props and
has created captivating videos with no tension for the deterioration in
quality. His contents are being appreciated and admired.
In these hard times, his digital stores and website have witnessed
monumental traffic like never before. This is the clue, that
digitization and the music industry are becoming intertwined like never
before. With the audience waiting eagerly for content, he converted this
pandemic into an opportunity to array his skills set. Digitization of
the of his craft with the internet being all-time available is the most
viable solution to the current situation.
Earlier this year 14th February, he released Sobolo
which most Ghanaian music fell in love with. Currently the song has
over 4 Million streams across all music platforms. Fast forward, on 24th
April, he released his much anticipated album, Anloga Junction,
and it’s currently Ghana’s top Album so far, the album has earned over
30 Million streams across all music platforms and still counting.
The album is currently 4th on world most streamed album on apple music.
Below is the metric from Spotify;
On April 30, he was ranked first in the top 5 most streamed
Afro-beats recording and performing artiste in Africa. According to a
statistic presented by Audiomack – a music streaming and audio
distribution platform that allows artists to upload music and podcasts
to listeners across its mobile apps and site, Stonebwoy garnered an
organic 7million impressions in less than a week following a successful
release of his fourth studio album.
July 15, from hitting 10 million streams in just 10 days on Audiomack
alone, it’s just over 7 months into 2020, and three months since the
release of his fourth studio project, but Stonebwoy already broke yet
another music record. According to metrics, he become the first Ghanaian
recording and performing artiste to have his album to reach 20 million
streams on Audiomack streaming app.
Beating Drake, Stonebwoy, became the most streamed artiste on Deezer
and the second most streamed album on Deezer. His lead single “Nominate”
featuring legendary American singer, Keri Hilson, off the chart topping
“Anloga Junction” album made an entry to Billboard World Digital Song
The track-8 off the multiple award-winning musician’s fourth Studio
album leaped to the 19th position on the 25 best-selling international
digital singles chart in the United States. He was also ranked according
to sales, streams, or airplay, and based on the popularity of the song
and album in the United States and elsewhere across the globe. He
becomes the first the Ghanaian to to make it to sales chart.
On 17th July, he released his controversial freestyle Putuu (PRAY) and
it’s the most listened Ghanaian sound on both the internet and radio.
The tune is currently number one trending on YouTube, with 411K+
streams, number one on Apple Music Top 100 Ghana, number 24 on Audiomack
top songs chart with 1M+ streams and also 100k+ streams on Boomplay.
On 24th July he released the Remix to Good Morning (off Anloga
Junction Album) featuring Sarkodie and Kelvyn Colt. The song is
currently trending number 4 on YouTube with 506K streams, number on
Apple Music Hottest Track, number 5 on Apple Music Top 100 Ghana and
number 2 on Audiomack’s verified Afrobeats chart.
Stonebwoy has released 5 official music videos in 2020. Only 1 –
Sobolo was released as a single and the remaining 4 were released off
the Anloga Junction Album. Sobolo (single) – a highlife inclined tune
released 5 months ago has accumulated 1.6M+ YouTube views, African Party
500k+ YouTube views, Good Morning (original version) 700k+ YouTube
views (both were released 4months ago), Understand 900k+ YouTube views,
Nominate 3.1M+ youtube views (both were released 3 month ago) and
finally Le Gba Gbe [Alive] has garnered 600k+ YouTube views in 2 months.
Nominate, Good Morning and African Party remain the only videos on Apple Music’s top 100 video chart.
The data shows that, Stonebwoy’s audio and video streaming numbers
have witnessed a spike of around 14.5%. There is even a high possibility
of an increase in percentage since the reggae/ragga & dance-hall
honcho is expected to drop more projects to climax the year 2020.
FEATURE REPORT: Akrobeto Has Got The World ‘Laughing Out Loud’
Throwback to approximately two years ago when Ghana’s leading local languague broadcasting network – UTV Ghana announced actor and comedian, Akwasi Boadi, also known as ‘Akrobeto’ as the new addition to the list of its prolific on-air personalities to help disseminate news items to its audience, the whole country was left in a state of what was described as ‘discomfort’ due to his ‘poor’ formal education and journalism background.
Akrobeto was born at Ayirebi in the Ofoase Ayirebi constituency in the Eastern region of Ghana. According to his wikipedia, he did not have any formal education. He was a founding member of the Kristo Asafo drama group, when the drama group was founded by Apostle Kwadwo Safo in the late 1990s, along with Agya Koo, Mercy Asiedu, Nkomode the group performed in the Key Soap Concert Party at the National Theater. In 2008, he started featuring in kumawood movies.
What does an “illiterate” got to do with Journalism or radio and tv presentation? Well! I guess this paragraph will justify his call. Growing up in the sonic landscape of Ghana, we met a different style of practical journalism or broadcasting, thus, instead of employing well trained personalities with qualities like Investigative Skills, Tech-Savviness, Analytical Mind,etc into the field (that would however render the masses jobless), local media houses created shows – dominated by softnews that gave “illiterates” (with basically the ability to entertain an audience by making them laugh) to present on odd days and at odd hours. (Ofcourse no producer will air comedy oriented show on actively working days and hours).
Following his appointment as the host of “The Real News With Akrobeto”, the show and the media house started generating interesting conversations amongst the Ghanaian populace of heterogeneous background, majority of which has been centered on the humor aspect of it. Each episode was anticipated as it has become a weekly dose of laughter to cure boredom and to fight stress. The television show has become the most viewed programmed in Ghana with an overwhelming digital presence. Snippet from the show has become the recent social media memes. Internet users use excerpt from to show as comments to other’s posts.
Fast forward to 2020 – an era where the world is battling the glabal pandemic, Coronavirus, the veteran Kumawood actor has gotten international recognition with his comic news on Ghana’s UTV on Fridays. The show focus on trending news – dominated by entertainment & social news and has recently added sports news. He has made the world a little bit brighter with his hilarious sports presentation sketch. Boadi decided to take a shot at reading out a string of scores from the Premier League during ‘The Real News with Akrobeto’, but not in a way you’d expect.
His pronunciation of the club names as well as the players are ribs breaking. The recent news he aired about Cesar Azpilicueta, the captain of Chelsea Football Club attracted his attention and got features on Spanish tabloid – Marca, El Chiringuito TV, Sport Bible, Footyhumor, Falcons among others. Despite UTV being a Twi TV station, Akrobeto combines English and Twi as the medium of communication to his audience.
AKROBETO HAS GOT THE WORLD LAUGHING OUT LOUD
Check out reactions from international media houses below;
Watch episodes of the show below;
SELLY GALLEY: How The Ghanaian Media Personality Ascended To Fame
Selly Galley Fiawoo, was born to Mr. Daniel Aglago and Mad. Benedicta Aku Galley on 25/09/87. Since then, she has been a beacon of excitement to those around her; from her days in Creator School – Tema, where she was entertainment prefect, to Witsands international school and Akosombo International School, where she was a notable dancer, Meridian University, after whence she Hosted Ceasar’s House on TV3. Then radio and Broadcasting development foundation ( RABODEF), where she received media training. Selly has always left a mark on her immediate atmosphere.
After her media training, Selly proceeded to Atlantis Radio, where she offered dutiful service as a morning show producer, voice over artiste and field reporter.
Selly Galley’s ascendance to fame began when she won Miss Ghallywood beauty pageant; a talent hunt for the new face of the Ghana Movie industry in 2011. She continued to chase her dream by featuring on Big Brother Africa (the continents biggest reality show) and then, hosting one of the longest running shows on multimedia company limited’s Joy Prime TV, (PREMIERS).
After a successful run, she briefly Hosted AFRICAN POT, a showing that gives an upscale view at African Cuisine. Selly has hosted countless red carpets and events and is currently the host of OPINIONS, a weekly television show on Joy Prime.
Selly Galley has featured prominently in movies. Her talent as an actress has led her to play roles in flicks like, The African Child , the Number one fan , You May Kill the Bride , Beautuful Ruins, The TABLE , Any Other Monday , John and John and so on.
As an entrepreneur, Selly is the CEO of SELLYBRITY LOUNGE, a brand marketing strategist and influencer who has worked with companies like Adonko bitters, Alliance Motors Ghana, Betplanet, South African Tourism, Riovian Skincare, Shoezonegh and more. Selly is also a global fashion icon with several awards to her credit.
She’s married to Musician Praye Tietia, member of the legendary group PRAYE.
How Stonebwoy’s songs influenced social campaigns in Africa
“Music has the power to move us and to change us. Yet today’s music mostly does not seem to have the same earth-moving, society-shaping effects as that of the past. Much rarer are the antiwar sentiments of composers like Bob Dylan of the USA. The anti-apartheid and government-challenging lyrics of musicians like South Africa’s Miriam Makeba and Nigeria’s Fela Kuti have largely been exchanged for party-hard, live-the-rich-life lyrics.” – according to United Nations
In today’s digitised world, music has become even an even more integral part of our lives: we listen to it on our drive to work, when we go to parties, while we study, when we exercise, and in so many other settings. Yet in the most critical times, when the need arises for activism to bring down much needed societal change, we see fewer and fewer people on the streets taking to the streets with picket signs which bear profound lyrics from the songs of the day. In a generation of musicians focused on feel good and party music, Stonebwoy towers above his peers. The Afro-dancehall, Afrobeats, Afro-pop and reggae superstar is well known for his inspirational songs, focusing on good governance, poverty eradication, and spreading good cheer through positive messages with even more delightful melodies.
If ever there was a time when the world needed musicians like Stonebwoy, that time is now. 2020 has proven itself to be one of the most bizarre and tragic years in recent history, with tragedy and grief sweeping across the globe and its continents unendingly. From the truly horrific COVID-19 pandemic which forced countries to shut borders and order lockdowns, to protests against police brutality in the USA and Nigeria, among many other sufferings, the atmosphere has never been more prime for messages of hope and positivity.
His most recent studio album- Anloga Junction, which was released during COVID time, was warmly received by a severely ravaged world with messages from songs such as “Strengh and Hope” – a vibrant prayer which reminds listeners to keep faith and not despair even in the midst of adversity when all seems lost. Indeed, the message from this song resonated so well that Stonebwoy was called upon to perform it for the COVID time virtual concerts organised by global powerhouses such as Billboard, the African Day Benefit Concert hosted by Idris Elba, “Bathroom Sessions” organised by Clash Magazine to help Water Aid UK in their fight against the gobal pandemic.
In recent times, during the ENDSARS PROTEST organised to call for social change in Nigeria and to protest bad governance and police brutality, several of the protesters found comfort in the repertoire of Stonebwoy, through his songs like Suit and Tie which decries corruption, and more especially Run Go- a song which laments how African leaders are failing to satisfy the simple demands of their electorates and how that is leading to African youth to flee its shores in search of the proverbial greener pastures.
As some part of the lyrics says; “Tell we where we gonna run go, After making our motherland a bitter place to live. Tell we where we gonna run go, Wen dem say we have to pay for the oxygen we breathe, Answer me now Mr. big man. You no see everybody want to go run go up foreign no, Simple life, is all we want life. Give me food, give me clothes, give me love and give me shelter shelter, ‘Cus simple life, is all we want life”
To the Nigerians, Congolese, persons from Cameroonian descent, the combination of the lyrics of the song, rhythm and instruments have established a group identity, stir strong emotions, engage audiences and amass people to take action to demand for their due right to live as citizens and as matter of fact, “Run Go”. Top Nigerian celebrity and award-winning musician, Davido, tweeted some lyrics extract from the song, as a way of adding his voice to the campaign. Other social media users also quoted Stonebwoy’s lyrics in their posts addressing the issues affecting Africans.
Without a doubt, Stonebwoy’s lyrics have been relevant in 2020 and will find themselves being used long after he is gone – an enviable legacy for any artiste
The Jay Foley Story; A Journey Worth Celebrating [READ PROFILE]
Media Personality and entrepreneur Jay Foley gained mainstream acclaim as host of the entertainment television channel 4syte TV, but not long before that, he had created footprints which continue to inspire people,
His creative journey started in primary school education at Bishop Bowers School where he was referred to by his colleagues and teachers as “the creative think tank”
He was greatly admired for his ability to come up with very creative ideas that could impact the entertainment industry as well as other extra-curricular activities.
Foley grew up in many communities, nurturing his talent and leading him to what he is today. His creative thinking process drew his interest in studying Visual Arts in one of Ghana’s premium colleges, Achimota Secondary School
Jay Foley established his first company RADIO ADVERTISING PEOPLE LIMITED. His company specialized in developing audio products for advertisers. It consisted of radio commercials and jingles, radio imaging among others. His company today is one of the most successful young businesses in Ghana today.
He also trained himself to become a professional voice talent and today, has become one of the sought-after voice talents in Ghana.
RADIO ADVERTISING PEOPLE LIMITED presented him with an opportunity to become the lead host of one of Ghana leading entertainment television channels, 4syte tv. Jay Foley became one of the best entertainment presenters of his time. He worked with 4syte tv for 10 years. This gave him an undoubtedly, strong and highly influential relevance in Ghana and the diaspora.
Through 4syte tv and his company, Jay was made the General Manager of YFM Ghana, another leading urban youthful radio station in Accra, Ghana. From YFM, Jay moved to establish another competitive urban radio station, LIVE FM where he stayed on for another 3 years and the Business Manager.
In 2012, Jay Foley became the 1st Ghanaian radio and tv personality to cover the European Music Awards in Germany. His outstanding coverage earned him among the top media personalities to interview top celebrities such as BUSTA RYMES, ERIC BENNET, KIM KARDASHIAN, AKON among others on and off the Red Carpet of the BET AWARDS in 2013, 2014 and 2016.
Jay Foley’s engagement at the BET AWARDS created huge interest in Ghanaian journalist to follow suit in covering the BET AWARDS. He also became the brand ambassador for REMY MARTIN and Telco giants MTN.
In 2018, Foley was assigned by EIB NETWORK, owners of FIESTA TV, an entertainment digital satellite TV channel on one of Africa’s most patronized Satellite television platforms, DSTV, to upgrade the channels performance on DSTV to promote Ghanaian content across Africa. Jay Foley and his team have managed to elevate FIESTA Channel to become the only Ghanaian owned entertainment TV station to air across 48 African countries in Africa.
Currently, Jay Foley also hosts his radio show titled MUSIC BOX on HITZ103.9fm, which currently is the city’s most influential and widely listened to radio station. His latest role to host the morning show on JOY PRIME TV is clearly based on his years of experience in the showbiz space in and out of Ghana
In all of this, Jay Foley has dedicated time to filming the beautiful sights and sounds of Ghana in a special series titled, THE SKY MARSHALS. A 30-episode series that gives the viewer a realistic experience of the beautiful sights in Ghana.
In music, through his efforts, Jay has helped a lot of Ghanaian artistes gain mainstream appreciation in the music industry and across its borders. He continues to dedicate his life to inspiring, helping and motivating young people with his exploits. His guiding principle is, “it is possible if you believe.”
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