Singer does not need Chocolate City [A response to Toni Kan]

Thanks Mr. Kan, for your desire to see a greater Brymo. But greatness can be achieved beyond the management and business of Chocolate City.


Mr Toni Kan, I read your article like a child, sucks on his favorite lollipop; enthusiastic and happy. With beautiful words, and extra lyrical perception and understanding, you have opened the eyes of many to ‘Purple Jar’, a song which has one of the best melodies to have come out of Nigeria. Thank you for this. Also, I thank you for your good heart, which seeks to improve the lot of Brymo by recommending him back into a ‘larger and efficient’ setup, for his music to thrive. This is selfless, and the industry currently needs more of this beneficial moves.

But Mr Kan, in the specifics of your argument, I disagree on your fine points. Brymo does not need Chocolate City. He is fine. He is successful, and he is flying, way higher than he would have flown had he been manacled to Chocolate City.

First, Uncle Toni, your plea to Audu Maikori, as convincing and emotional as it sounds, is late. It is, by empirical calculations, 2 years late. Brymo made the decision to leave Chocolate City after seeing his career stagnate, and begin to hit a low. His sound was skewed for pop commercial profits, and as a creative soul, his inner harmony which gives him the ability to stay in love with his singing was lost.

He left because he was dissatisfied and lost.

After Brymo’s departure from the group, the legal case which ensued was lethal enough to kill a man, his dreams, and most importantly, his hope. With running legal battle, injunctions, intrigue and debilitating drama, the embattled soul kept his wit about himself, focused on his music, and released what can arguably be called the best album Nigeria can boast of in the past decade – “Merchants, Dealers & Slaves,”which contains timeless records such as ‘Eko’, ‘Purple Jar’, and ‘Down’.

This was nothing short of super human. After hitting a low, he dropped that album, which not only put him back on the map, but also did skyrocket his brand.

The ubiquitous story of the prodigal son in Luke 15:11-32 is an age-old pointer to the goodness that mankind has the potential to exhibit. Forgiveness is hard, and acceptance is nigh on impossible for today’s generation of self-serving people. And in the case of Brymo, this analogy, technically does not apply.

The story of the prodigal son has no alternative. What would have happened if the departing son was astute with money, and prudently applied his share of the wealth he was bequeathed? What if he became a success, set up shop, and led a life worthy of emulation, filled with happiness and prosperity.

Would this analogy still apply?

Brymo isn’t suffering. Brymo hasn’t hit a new low. Ironically, the nadir of his career was his legal struggle with his previous ‘home’ headed by his former ‘father’, who distanced emotion from the affair, and like a good businessman, fought the breaching of a legally binding contract. Audu Maikori didn’t split his profits and wished Brymo away to live happily ever after. He demanded for his rightful pound of flesh. This makes redundant, every attempt to liken it to the prodigal son story.

Mr Kan, let’s throw light on Brymo after Chocolate City.

The singer is happy. First as a person, before the art, Brymo is a happy man. I have met him on many occasions after his split, and he radiates a calming joy that is infectious. This joy can only be acquired from having inner peace which is fuelled by contentedness. Even though the theme in “MD&S” is sorrowful and sultry, the man elevates himself into happiness and joy with the content of his “Tabula Rasa” LP

As a singer, Brymo’s sound is at its best. The soulful, romantic, deep, sultry, and incisive music he has made since he left Chocolate City has no peer in Nigeria. There is a market for that, within the continent and beyond. I have it on good authority, that his “Merchants, Dealers & Slaves” made millions of Naira in digital distribution alone. Throw that in with his Alaba income, and the incessant performance fees from shows, and you have a financially stable man.

His second album, ‘Tabula Rasa’, was another major victory, selling out on every physical copies. Digital distribution also gave him major financial strength.

Brymo is also set to drop his first international album this September. The alternative soul singer has concluded plans to release a new album titled “”. the new album is specially targeted to his fans and followers in the US, with the songs off the album drawn from his best tracks off his previous album “Merchants, Dealers & Slaves”, and “Tabula Rasa”.

Songs choosen from these albums include hit songs ‘Everyone gets to die’, ‘Je ‘le o sinmi’, ‘Nothing’s ever promised tomorrow’, ‘Money’, ‘Se bi o ti  mo’. ‘Again’, ‘Never look back’, and ‘Dear Child’.

On March  31, Brymo via his management company The Bali Entertanment Company LTD headed by Lanre Lawal, signed a recording and distribution deal with US company, Tate Music Group (TMG). The deal is a territorial deal that covers the United States alone. This deal comes with a major financial aspect, as it makes Brymo’s music eligible for improved purchase in the lucrative US music stores, both digital purchases, and physical copies.

“Trance” will be Brymo’s fifth career album, and the third release since he split ways with Chocolate City in 2013.

Mr Kan, Brymo has almost no need for Chocolate City. He has moved on. He is seeing his money.

The only part of his business that needs more input, is the promotion within the country, and brand endorsement deals. But right now, Brymo is literally balling, and seeing his money.

See what Brymo said makes him stay away from members of Chocolate city records.


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