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Street Anthems are major game-changers for both the artists and the streets themselves. Slangs, Dance Routines, fashion sense have in one or the other been birthed from these anthems.
Artists like Daddy Showkey, Danfo Drivers, Terry G, Olamide, Naira Marley, Zlatan got their success from making street Anthems and in turn popularized Dance steps, slangs that people won’t forget.
Another example of this is Bella Shmurda who came into the spotlight in 2019 with his hit song, “Vision 2020” and hasn’t looked back since then. His value grew even higher in 2020 when he released ‘Cash App’ a song that pays homage to the ‘working boys’ of Nigeria.
The song became an instant hit especially on the streets of Lagos even despite the lack of Parties due to the ongoing Pandemic.
The success of the song could be attributed to two things; The Sound and the message. Over the years, one has seen Internet Fraud Culture and Music Industry intertwined in unholy matrimony.
This is why hearing songs glorifying ‘Yahoo-Yahoo’ isn’t new or common. In fact, in 2018, Chinko Ekun‘s hit song, “Able God” contained questionable lyrics where the singer asked God to bless him but in an illegitimate manner.
While the lyrics of Able God were subtle in its approach, Bella, on the other hand, was open about it, the song could be considered a masterclass.
His opening lyrics which goes; “Ice on my neck, ice on my wrist, many nights I never sleep…” is a reference to the lavish lifestyles of Nigerian Yahoo boys and their taste for expensive Jewellery.
They are also known for working during the nights due to Time Zones and Time differences.
Another person who is also on his way to becoming a street king is Marlian Music act, Mohbad. The singer who is a label run by Naira Marley struggles to shine from the shadow of his boss.
However, things seem to turn around with the success of his collaboration with Rexxie, “KPK (Ko Por Ke). Just like Cash App, KPK also contains lyrics that praise Yahoo Boys only it’s a bit subtle.
Cash App and KPK have now dominated the streets thanks to their fast-paced, drum-heavy, percussion-based version of Nigerian Afro-pop sound.
Another reason is its catchy and relatable lyrics, for ‘Cashapp’, Bella references the mobile payment service of the same name developed by the Jack Dorsey-led P2P American financial services, merchant services aggregator, and mobile payment company, Square Inc which most Yahoo boys are said to use for their operations.