Today at 8:00pm on BET, the entire world will be witnessing Yet another History! The Day when Nigeria gets recognized as one of the best HipHop nations.
Last year, the world experienced history with the first ever All African Cypher, which was created by BET International to demonstrate how the hip-hop movement and culture spanned way beyond the shores of the US and extended its impact to the continent of Africa. The cypher, which featured some of the hottest rappers in Ghana, was performed in four languages. Heavy weight artists such as 2011 BET Awards nominee, D-Black, founder of the Ghanaian Hiplife movement, Reggie Rockstone, Kwaku T, Tinny, BabyG, Ayigbe Edem and Ghana’s fastest rapper, Sarkodie, all caught worldwide attention with their amazing delivery when they appeared on the 2010 International broadcast of the BET Hip-Hop Awards.
This historical event created a sensational viral frenzy and an unprecedented buzz in the entertainment industry. With such incredibly positive feedback from the press and the public, it seemed only natural that BET International executives, Michael Armstrong and Ava Hall would decide to incorporate an African Cypher into the International broadcast of the BET Hip-Hop Awards once again.
Which African country got put to the test this year – NIGERIA!
BET has been known to pay tribute to the lyrical skills of African hip-hop artists over the past few years, featuring some of the best in their International Cyphers – Ghanaian artist Sway, Somalian artist K’NAAN and Tanzanian artist Gsan (member of the group X Plastaz).
In this year’s US broadcast of the 2011 International Flow Cypher, Africans worldwide were proud to see Paris based Comorian rapper Soprano and UK based Senegalese artist, Estelle perform.
There is absolutely no question that Nigeria is more than ready for this challenge. Nigeria has had an amazing year with 2011 BET Award winners D’Banj and 2Face Idibia, as well as amazing album releases from incredible artists such as M.I, Ice Prince, Naeto C, SDC and Wiz Kid. Overall, the African entertainment industry continues to witness an emergence of incredibly talented artists from Nigeria who are making an impact internationally and redefining the image of African Hip-hop.
Even though I was sad that the African Cypher wasn’t shown during the 2011 BET HipHop awards aired in the USA on October 11; at least we’ll get to see it today.
An exciting twist to this year’s cypher is that both the male and female talents of Nigerian hip-hop will be represented with an Emcee and Femcee Cypher! With their own exclusive cypher, the Nigerian Femcees will not only make history by being featured in the first ever all-female African cypher, they will also be given an international platform to showcase their craft and talent.
BET international made the effort to select the artists that they thought would demonstrate the best lyrical skill and delivery to a very devoted fan base.
In the efforts to keep every part of the cypher 100% Nigerian, producer, IBK Spaceship Boi (The Don Jazzy Enigma Beat winner) created the beat, and the legendary Cool DJ Jimmy Jatt and DJ Hazel Eyez were featured on the wheels of steel. Produced and Directed once again by BET International’s Lilian N. Blankson, the cyphers were shot on location in Lagos by the award winning music video director, Clarence Peters, and his Capital Dreams Pictures Production Company.
International audiences in the UK, Ireland and Africa will be able to watch both of the cyphers in addition to two exclusive UK cyphers also featured by BET International on the international premiere of the BET Hip-Hop Awards airing Saturday, October 15th @8pm BST. Tune in and watch history in the making!
In the meantime, enjoy the madt cyphers below to wet your appetite
Shady 2.0 Cypher: Eminem, Yelawolf & Slaughterhouse
Indie Meets Mainstream Cypher: Big K.R.I.T., Tech N9ne, Machine Gun Kelly, Kendrick Lamar & B.o.B
Verdict: Tech N9ne & B.o.B came correct
Uncut Cypher: Reek Da Villain, 2 Chainz, Busta Rhymes & Ludacris
Verdict: My own favorite 2011 cypher, need I say more?
Survival of The iLLest: Lady of Rage, Blind Fury, Dom Kennedy & Skillz
Verdict: Skillz steals the show on this one but a close 2nd is Blind Fury …Young And Gifted Always (YAGA)
Maybach Music Group Cypher: Rick Ross, Wale, Pill, Stalley & Meek Mill
Verdict: When they show up on your set, please bow down …Rick Ross & Walay, all DAY!
International Flow Cypher: Nitty Scott, Lacrae, Soprano & Estelle
Verdict: A bit lukewarm although Estelle shows some class.
Chris Brown & Friends Cypher: Chris Brown, Kevin McCall, Tyga & Ace Hood
Verdict: Tyga & Ace Hood rip this apart