Notes from the console: Criticising an artiste doesn’t make you a hypocrite

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I pray above all things that it will not take another death to bring me back to the writing table.

Friday the 9th of February was indeed a day of national mourning. Ghana was silent. The music industry wailed; literally. People were shocked. We were so shocked; our shockness shocked our shock as Trevor Noah would say.

The gruesome pictures and videos that circulated confirmed the news, though we dressed those who circulated them on our various social media platforms.

So Ebony is gone? Just like that? A promising career just cut short. I will personally remember her for her bubbliness, free -spiritedness and beauty.

Now, I have heard many say Ghanaians have turned hypocrites overnight, all of a sudden, we are outdoing each other in penning down love letters to the late ‘Ohema’ as her ‘preman’( sophisticated)  father called her. Their argument is that when she was alive, these same people criticized her appearances and tore her to pieces.

However, I would bet my last penny that, even in death, if the issue of her dress sense was put on the table, critics would still do that which they are paid to do; criticize. People who had problems with her style would still have problems with her style; the fact that she has left us will not change anything.

Of course, when such a young and talented person leaves the world in the manner in which she did, no normal human being would be unsympathetic. People’s hearts will go out to her close family and friends. People will be sorry that such a talent’s journey would be cut so short; because mind you, no one doubted the creative juices of the ‘90s bad gurl’.

In an industry like ours, creativity thrives on criticism. Constructive criticism. It does not in any way suppose hatred or doubt in the abilities of a talent. In actual fact, it means, ‘you’ve got something, but you can be better’.

One of the secrets of the success of CEO of Roverman Productions; James Ebo Whyte, is that he opens himself up for constructive criticism. People see things you cannot see, and it is for no reason that the Akan proverb says ‘The fellow cutting the grass cannot see that the path he’s created behind him is crooked’. Someone else would have to point it out.

I wish creative artistes would understand that criticisms are pivotal your growth. By all means listen to all feedback and absorb that which chisels you become a better person.

If you think I’m lying, ask the NPP government. When DVLA wanted to cause a blunder by imposing a mandatory 100 cedi first aid kit box on drivers, Ghanaians nearly chewed the government’s ears, and the decision was rescinded.

When Ghanaians said they were not going to pay mandatory toll fees, fast fast, they scrapped it off. Right, TV license court too. Told you, they listen to criticism. I’m just not very sure former President Mahama handled it too well though, because I think he left office almost bald, but I am certain his government benefited from some good criticism as well.

Rest well Ohemaa, we will miss all the great songs that you’ve taken away with you. I am proudly a 90’s gurl too, I’m just not sure about the ‘bad’ part.

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