Many people that know me today find it hard to picture me as a rapper.
But yeah, I was a rapper and got on stage to rap in front of crowds and my last live show was in my 2nd year in the university at the Miss UNN pageant. It was my first time rapping on stage in UNN and it was my last too.
But hey, right before then, I used to be a singer way back in secondary school (Science College). I had a boy band and we were the FLAME in our school…Oh well, we were actually known as FLAME (a.k.a Outlawz for Christ).
Okay, go ahead…laugh.
Yup. I and my friends came together and we formed that group. Almost every Sunday, we would get on stage in our school’s chapel and sing different songs, including Acapellas. We were tired of having boring chapel services and thought of how to spice things up so we and other students don’t die of boredom.
Every time we got on stage, the girls/guys used to be thrilled. You could literarily see people run out from the bush and other places they hid to ‘dodge’ evening chapel and into the hall whenever we got on stage and shouts rent the air.
People looked forward to coming to the chapel expecting us to sing. The once ‘so boring’ evening chapel became a ‘goer’ for students because we made it lit anytime we got on stage and because we never announced if we’d be on stage at any service, students showed up almost every other Sunday hoping we would get on stage.
Right as we shone on, a group of junior students came together and tried to do what we used to do and were bent on doing it ‘better’ than us. My group saw it as competition but I told them I was glad we had inspired others to join in making the Sunday evenings lit and that they’d help us keep the chapel charged when we weren’t performing.
We gave them the spot and they were the ones on stage for a while. Then, on the last Sunday before our graduation, they had planned for it to be their biggest performance but they had issues during their performance because some were trying too hard to outshine others and they ended up making a mess out of the whole thing.
I looked at my guys and told them we had to go up there. We nodded…we grouped up outside…sent word to the chapel prefect and he excitedly ran and announced that FLAME would be on stage that evening. The chapel went up in flame (pun intended) as students screamed in excitement.
We got on stage, sang and then switched to rap and yes, the place burned down (Figuratively). Screams everywhere. The whole place was something else and people actually ran and followed us when we left the stage.
After this, the younger guys met me and one of them that was close to me confessed that they had grouped up to replace us. That they had wanted to outshine us and make us irrelevant because most of his class mates felt we were ‘doing’ too much.
You see, that is the problem right there. I and my group got on stage to drive away boredom from school and make people look forward to evening chapel but these young guys actually grouped just to drive us off stage and become the ‘superstars’.
This is the conflict amongst and between generations today. Most people in the younger generation usually try to replace their peers and even those older in the profession without understanding that the original purpose of doing what is done is to better society, not to be seen as the ‘best superstars that ever liveth’.
Many of them expend their energy trying to ‘overtake’ those they should be meeting up to be mentored by or shown the light as well as those they should be ‘collaborating with’ to do better. Many run with slogans like ‘takeover’ and the rest and even pray in church asking for grace to take over and outshine others.
They miss it.
We are called to a noble cause. Whatever we do here on earth should be to better life here. Life is not a rappers’ beef/dis track. Life is more like a duet or group song with each person on it aiming to thrill the listener, not compete with the others.
We miss it when we see others as competition and expend our energy and existence on trying to outshine them or take their spot. That mentality is so much a goner.
Reach out and work with people in your field of pursuit or endeavor. We are not at war. We are all in this life together. Young people, work with each other and even an older colleague. Older people, bring the younger guys in on what you do.
Philip Asuquotes with some of his protege(s) at PAQ SESSION
Most of the professions you see today were actually started by noble men for a noble cause that would help humanity. Many young people come up and without knowing the right reins about their profession, they fly into practice with a vow to beat the others and be the best…as if that was the reason that profession was ever set up.
Let the baton of nobility be passed from generation to generation.
Let us actually know and do what we are here to do, without the faulty mentality of ‘taking over’ or outshining the other. Life is about succession. Let the noble teach the newbies and let them in turn show their peers the noble way to life on earth.
ABOUT THE WRITER
Philip Asuquotes is a strategy consultant, poimen and futurist. He studied Mass Communication in the University of Nigeria Nsukka and has been active in the sphere of branding and public relations. He is the convener of PAQ SESSION, a live intellectual and thought leadership summit. He can be reached via email@example.com or @philasuquotes on Twitter | www.thebloomsquare.com