Within the last two weeks, my colleague and brother, Zara, has written two articles about Jesse Jagz and his new material; “Odysseus” which I bet you’ve not heard. In one of the articles, Zara said something like “For a B-list artiste like Jagz”. Wait a minute? you said what? B-boying? Or what exactly, are you joking bro?
Jesse Jagz is a well respected Nigerian rapper, who like many others was once signed to Chocolate City. To state the fact, the rap phenomenon that dominated Nigeria hip hop from 2008 to 2013 wouldn’t have been whole without Jargo.
Jesse Jagz, along with his brother, Jude “M.I” Abaga and Ice Prince Zamani, are one of the reason I won’t stop saying Chocolate City is the biggest label Nigeria has ever had.
Now, tell me how that equation could’ve been complete without Jesse?
Now, I’m not going to start with all the history. Kindly read Zara’s article; A Failed Album That Couldn’t Meet Expectations. Thanks big bro, you saved me some 500 words. Jagz is not a star anymore. I know some critics that would agree with me that he was never really an A list star.
Everything he puts out there goes almost unnoticed. Even “Jaga Love” was supposed to hit. This cannot be the very Jagz whose album “Jag Of All Tradez” inspired us and pushed rappers to “fix up” their pen job.
I understand the culture has evolved and it’s been a while since Jag was hot. But this should only make the fans ecstatic in anticipation of a comeback project. Imagine the hype when a new M.I project comes now. But that wasn’t the case.
Between 2017 and the last time Jag dropped a full project, his influence and appearances has dwindled. With no iota of influence left on the scene, he’ll have to start from scratch. I guess that’s the reason for the heavy Reggae/dance-hall experimentation. He’s got nothing to lose, our beloved Jesse Jagz is now an upcoming artist.
Look at it this way, If Blaqbonez dropped an EP, he’ll probably get more hype than Jesse got for Odysseus. Or let’s step it to the underground kings like A-Q or Boogey. If Ycee or Falz drops a project or just a single on the same day as Jesse, those songs will make sure Jesse’s core fans never hear of his work. That’s how awful it can get, just like any other up-and-not-coming artiste.
Everything about this LP failed. I got the album a week after the release, and it actually sounded like a poorly focused Jagz who isn’t sure of which way forward.
What went wrong?
Everything went wrong. From the odd music (reggae) to his new nickname “Supreme Emperor” to the life-bereft release. Odysseus took too much time to come and when it finally did, it was a disappointment. No Wizkid, no M.I and no Ice Prince.
The album threaded a of path of self-destruction. It failed woefully. Apart from the music (reggae – or patois rap) the strategy was nothing to write home about. Capital Zero. Who handled this release? They need to be flogged. A lot of things really went wrong.
Even though Chocolate City isn’t as mega as they were before, they wouldn’t have flopped a major comeback project this much. In fact CKay’s almost-impromptu EP was handled so well, it almost catapulted him to the mainstream. Maybe he should’ve stayed at Chocolate city to release this album and then leave afterwards.
Whatever the case may be, in 2017, a lot of things have changed. Dollar is N365, Tekno is with Drake at OVO, Olamide dropped a pop album and Ycee is now a singer. And, yes Jesse Jagz is a veteran upcoming artist. I rest my case.
Too many people need to fix up their lives.
About the author
Tylz Ceazar Yo is a young rap artiste and an outspoken music industry commentator. He writes in a very controversial manner and is known to “never let the sleeping dogs lie”. In October 2017, he was inducted into HipHopHead as a contributor.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent the views of HipHopHead.