I love struggle in every form. From the basic struggle within oneself, to interpersonal collision, corporate battles, up to systemic challenges, societal class disruption, and leftist uprisings, I love struggles.
Struggle represents a part of the process of living. It shakes up existence, brings in questions, inspires free speech, and in the end, creates change. Yep, that’s it. It creates change, whether positive or negative, the change is guaranteed to come home.
Psquare spent last week in the news. This time though was different. It wasn’t a good ol’ fight between disagreeing Peter and Paul. No. This time the target was on upper management. Jude Okoye and his managerial dynasty received a bashing from Peter Okoye, who has literally decided that he has had enough of the ‘big-brother-looking-after-smaller-brothers’ business. He called for a change. Whether that change come, or the underlying issues which led to the uprising are addrsessed, The choice lies somewhere in Squareville.
Much of the reaction on social media and feedback gotten from forums have been interesting. The first wave came from the surprised folks, who basically just are stunned to get new gist. Then came the ‘wisdom propagators’, who are against airing dirty laundry on social media, then the fans chipped in, with sides being taken and shots fired. But the most significant response strikes right at the heart of what many fear will happen eventually; Peter and Paul will split, and Psquare will be no more.
People are scared of that possibility, hence the screams for the swift resolution of the dispute. Or even if it fails to be resolved, that Jude gets the boot, but Psquare remains as an act.
But have you ever considered the view that everyone will be better off if Psquare break up? If they need this break up more than you need them to stay together.
It has been a long run for the twins. From the creation of their Michael Jackson-inspired their break dancing group calledSmooth Criminals, to the myriad awards, through the Michael Jackson tribute visual ‘Personally’, they have seen it all, done it all, and earned it all. Together from birth, they have had each other’s backs, fought, sang, cried, grown, and currently they have plateaued.
Their last hit ‘Shekini’, was in August 2014, and even the next single with Awilo Longomba titled ‘Enemy Solo’ failed to come alive in Nigeria. Do you even know they have released a mini-music series, and also a single titled ‘OMG’?
It didn’t work too. But what worked were solo projects. Peter Okoye is still on his Olympic endorsement deal, and he has also pulled off arguably the best reality TV show in the country’- Dance with Peter.
Paul on his part has set up his record label, signed his first act, Muno, and released singles. Also he earned his first solo deal, working with Tiwa Savage on an inspirational number.
Everyone is all about self now, with the group having a fragmented outlook. The brothers don’t seem so brotherly in business anymore. Also throw in reports of Paul Okoye claiming singular credit for his work on their extensive discography. He is widely regarded as the brain behind the music, and the general perception is that he feels his skills would be more suited to other personal endeavors, hence the opening of his Rudeboy Records.
Peter Okoye the more marketable chap is an show pony whose skills and image are already being sought by numerous brands. The reason is hard to find. He is slicker, more celebrity-ish, and hyperactive. He is the Alpha-Twin.
Change is what the Okoye brothers’ need, and it shouldn’t end with Jude Okoye. It should start with him, and end with everyone walking away from the group.
Change most times is a good thing. Don Jazzy and D’banj broke up and we have the beauty of the Mavins, and the marketable maverick of D’banj. Plantashum Boiz went up in flames, and from the ashes came 2face Idibia, Blackface, and Faze. Remedies took the split decision giving birth to Eedris Abdulkareem and Tony Tetuila.
As for the fans who many consider as a good reason to stick together, they will understand. They simply will go through all the stages of grief in 5 minutes, and move elsewhere. That’s pop culture. Harsh, ruthless and inattentive.
Psquare have been Africa’s best pop group for over a decade. Their future should not be their past.
Joey Akan is a Category Editor at Pulse. An Award-winning writer, presenter, poet and music critic, Joey leans on the crazy aspects of journalism with a unique skill-set. He lives for pop culture, sweaty parties, rocking jams, snobbish celebrities and Peter Okoye falling off stage. Reach me via Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, 09090404151 (SMS only) Follow him on Instagram @joeyakan