Earlier in 2020, Nigerian pop star, Mayorkun released his single, ‘Geng.’ The song resonates with Nigerian audiences for its anecdotal tendencies. Its hook was also firmly embedded on the rocks that form the platform of modern pop culture.
Over the past years, uses of the slang ‘gang’ – pronounced as ‘geng’ – were passive and even blase. People always say, ‘geng geng,’ but we never really paid attention. ‘Geng’ originates from the word, ‘Gang.’ It’s used as a collective noun of colloquial usage for a group of people or familiarity. Now, Mayorkun will take the slang to another level.
Since the song was released, numerous Nigerian artists like YCee, Falz, Lord Vino, BIG N, Skiibii, N6 and more have jumped on it. In no way dissimilar to the sweeping tides of musical genius that birthed Jah Bless‘s ‘Joor,‘ free verses to ‘Geng‘ follow the path of musical gold that Mayorkun creates to deliver humorous comparison or sarcastic adulation that spit on phoney collectives.
Over the past three years, Nigerian artists have tapped into the ebullient market of virality to take their songs from obscurity to mainstream consciousness. Sometimes, those songs don’t become hits, but they do about enough to help their creators. These viral moments usually come as dance moves or free verses.
Some of these moments include ‘Fvck You’ by Kizz Daniel, ‘Pawon’ by Olamide, ‘Soapy‘ and ‘Tesumole‘ by Naira Marley, ‘Gbeku‘ by Zlatan, ‘Double Homicide‘ by Poe, ‘Who You Epp‘ by Olamide and so forth. It’s not just a Nigerian thing either; ‘In My Feelings‘ by Drake blew off a viral hashtag.
So did other songs like, ‘Harlem Shake‘ by Bauuer, ‘Gangnam Style‘ by Psy, ‘Party Rock Anthem’ by LMFAO, ‘Black Beatles‘ by Rae Sremmurd and so forth. These moments inspire participation by members of the audience for whom they are created. These members of the audience then catapult those songs into mainstream consciousness.
After these viral episodes, those songs are bigger than what they were before their viral moments that jump on them. All forms of creation in art which require an audience usually thrive off participation by those members of the audience. When those members of the audience or superstars then recreate songs that are meant for them, the results is automatic popularity.
‘Geng’ isn’t a hit yet, but it looks likely to be than not. Like any other viral moment, it thrives off the viral videos created by Mayorkun‘s peers. Here are the top five ‘Geng’ free verses (so far);
5) Chinko Ekun