With over 360 ethnic groups and languages Nigeria is not the most literal nation-state where national identities and symbols can be publicly pointed to and displayed like badges of honour. But if there is ever going to be anything 170 million Nigerians agree about, it is jollof rice. Jollof rice is a phenomenal element of the Nigerian existence that all other facets of our lives draw inspiration from, including music and this is how we came up with this party jollof guide to making Nigerian music.
Step 1: Find some bland white rice.
A great man once said every plate of seasoned jollof rice was once a tasteless heap of white rice. Taking this crucial cue, the first step to making jollof rice music is to find an artiste as bland as white rice. It doesn’t matter if the artiste has no talent, knows nothing about music, or even has a childish fetish for stalking bloggers, just find one first. Like jollof rice, Nigerian music does not discriminate.
Step 2: Get a big ass iron pot.
This iron pot is the symbol of the “hustle” and “pains” Nigerian artistes go through, even though nobody except them can authoritatively verify these triumphant tales of struggles and sufferings. So very much like your party jollof, nobody really gets to see it until the rice has been scooped out, but we all kind of “know” it was part of the process that produced the seasoned brilliance you are about to eat.
Step 3: Get as many spices as you can.
Back to your bland white rice. The white rice has to go through a series of rigorous spicing before it is to be eaten as jollof for one major reason; aroma. The aroma of any Nigerian party jollof rice must disturb your neighbours enough for them to come knocking. The same applies for your bland white rice of a Nigerian artiste. Find as many things as possible to spice his/her career so even if the music is bad, the aroma will draw curiosity enough to guarantee a second glance. A great producer is always the first place to look, of course, everything else should come after this.
Step 4:Intensify the intensity of the aroma.
Once the aroma of your artiste is spiced enough by a fairly decent producer to snag a hit, you have to increase the efforts at making sure the artiste is never forgotten. In jollof rice speak, bay leaf is what you need, but for music, we recommend anything buzz-worthy enough to grab Linda Ikeji’s attention. Once she looks into your matter, no PR can save you from blowing (terms and conditions apply.) It’s really smooth sailing for you from here.
Step 5: Extra condiments for effects.
Chefs all over Nigeria and beyond are doing really fun stuff with our local food these days. So you could be one of those extra-mile people who add green peas, sausage, plantain, shredded goat meat and stuff to their jollof rice. In music, this means adding extra pizzazz to your music for international exposure. We are not really sure who that has helped, but when we find someone, you will be the first to know.
Step 6: Mix everything together in the same pot one last time.
Before you start serving, be sure to turn everything in the same pot one last time. This is important to get the full jollof effect so all the spices can compliment each other. In other words, close all the corners, make sure the auto-tune is surround. Talent, lyrics and actual vocals were all thrown out the window a few steps ago, so there is no point trying to fix those now. Just auto-tune it all. Nobody will be able to tell what sounds like what when you’re done anyway.
Step 7: Serving your party jollof.
Keep your presentation clean, A great music video director will do this for you. Unclad video vixens with big butts are like the fried piece of chicken on top of your rice, be sure to add them. Don’t waste time on plotting a good course for your career with a cohesive album, just release a 10 track album with 9 pre-released singles. Also, remember to invent a dance, don’t be a bastard baby.
There you have it.