Popular Ghanaian music group, Keche, has dismissed claims suggesting a language barrier could impede the international success of Ghanaian music.
Citing examples like Nigerian artist Asake and the South African hit “Jerusalema,” the duo emphasized that language diversity has not hindered global hits in the past.
They explained; “Not at all, if you listen to Asake’s songs, 90% of his songs are in Yoruba. The biggest song in Africa at the time, Jerusalema, was in Swahili, not English. If language was a factor, songs like Gangnam Style, etc. would not have hit on an international level. So language is not a problem,”
Amid ongoing discussions about the Ghanaian music industry’s success, Keche asserted that music’s dynamism transcends language, debunking the notion that a specific language is crucial for global acclaim.
Expressing concern over mislabeling, Keche highlighted artists categorizing their music as Afrobeat instead of the traditional Highlife. They stressed the importance of preserving Ghana’s unique musical heritage while acknowledging the positive impact of the diaspora on the local music scene.
“The whole Afro beat thing is making most of us lose our way; even people do Highlife and they want to call it Afro beats. We are lucky we have the diasporans coming in, but what are we giving to them? Let’s make sure that our genre would be projected very well, it doesn’t mean we should stop the Afrobeats but let’s project our genres, the Highlife and the Hiplife,” they said.
Keche drew attention to Nigeria’s successful promotion of Afrobeats and urged the Ghanaian community to similarly champion Highlife and Hiplife genres. Emphasizing Nigeria’s influence on the global stage, they called for collective efforts to elevate Ghanaian music to similar heights.
“Now if we mention Afrobeats, there’s only one place that comes to mind, Nigeria; they’ve done everything possible to champion it. Now, the Grammy nominations came out and you see they’ve it,”
“So let’s let’s project our genre, and let’s keep hitting it. This is what we have, Hiplife and Highlife. Let’s just champion our songs and push them. You will see, in about 5 to 7 years, we will also get to that point as well,” said by them