The Nigerian music industry has been revolutionized over the years, with artistes now returning to album culture after a long run of single releases.
What is an album? Albums are the compilation of recorded tracks, supplied as a unit on any digital means, such as CD, Data, and other electronic devices, in the Nigerian music industry, album culture has been a thing.
Album culture is simply the traditional style of how an artist publishes their records to the audience, at a given pace, depending on their personal or managerial preference, Artiste either publish Singles or Albums,
Note! Albums are not just a bunch of irregular tracks and/or perhaps a random“hits songs” collection, rather a sonically coordinated piece with a directed theme, a smooth album must have a unique flow, sounds, and arrangement, in this context; a unique sound doesn’t connote monotonous sound, it simply the connection from instrumentals to balance the chord, harmonizing from the intro to the outro of a project.
At the early stage between the 2000s and 2010s, the industry literally embraced the album culture, producing sonically cohesive projects at various random.
This was the case in the early 2000s to late 2000s with artists like African China, Danfo Drivers (Moutain Black & Late Mad Melon), Olu Maintain, 2Baba, Timaya, Faze, Rooftop MCs, 9ice, P-Square, D’banj, Lagbaja, Mode 9, Banky W, Omawunmi, Wande Coal, Flavour, Edris, Eldee, Jazzman, all embracing the album culture.
In the early 2010’s artists like Duncan Mighty, Wizkid, Olamide, Burna Boy, Phyno followed suits with the traditional style.
Single’s style of record publishing in the Nigerian music industry gradually became a thing during the CDs to electronic medium evolution, around the first quarter of the last decade, with Tekno leading the movement.
However, an artiste may wake up and decide to share his work, or officially announce a released date for a single, even without making it a promotional
copy of any forthcoming project.
Mainstream artists that dominated with singles include Tekno, Runtown, and Davido partially. Tekno‘s debut album was released in 2020, almost 6 to 7years after gaining prominence. At the time of his entrance into the music scene he released about 10 hit singles, the reason is best known to him or his management.
Runtown, on the other hand, wasn’t an album artiste basically, Having released his first album in 2015, his next project was released in 2020.
Davido was also known for his singles regardless of his debut project, reasons were because most of his records did well independently as a single and not as a whole, for example, Dami Duro, IF, Fall were all singles from his album that made serious wave independently, he broke the jinx with back to back release of two projects ‘A Good Time‘ and ‘A Better Time‘ in a consecutive year (2019/2020).
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The second half of the last decade was dominated by single releases, such as songs like Pana by Tekno, Mad over you by Runtown, If, Fall, Fia by Davido, Manya by Wizkid, Wo by Olamide, and so on.
It became a norm and trendy that made releasing an album looks like time-wasting to up and coming artists,
In 2019/2020 was a revolution for the Nigerian music industry, all the artists stormed the scene with projects, artists like Burna Boy, Davido, Wizkid, Tiwa Savage, Tekno, Olamide, Phyno, Flavour, Timaya, Runtown, Yemi Alade, Fireboy, Brymo, Patoranking, 2baba, L.A.X, Moelogo, Rekaado Banks dropped a project (EPs and Albums), embracing the album culture wave.
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It was indeed a cultural reset for the industry which yielded and encouraged the up-and-coming artists to start thinking about publishing projects.
Albums or EPs dish out the depth of a creative project, it touches every part and shows the full artistic prowess of a musician.