Another year, another Olamide viral pop culture infusion.
At the moment, the most viral content online is Olamide’s single ‘Who you epp’. The song, which is the YBNL rapper’s second single after the release of ‘Abule sowo’, is currently the most covered, with each new day bringing up a new feature.
How did Olamide pull this off? The rapper has been at the top of Nigerian rap via the quality of his content, and the marketing of his sounds, from owning the gunman pose for his “Baddest Guy Ever Liveth”, album art, to his simple, yet expressive dance step for ‘Bobo’, king Baddo has kept up his profile.
The phrase ‘who you epp’ is a variation of ‘who you don epp’, which translates literally into proper English as ‘Who have you help?’, a question asked sarcastically to show the irrelevance of the subject.
‘Who you epp’ took a simple, yet different route. The rapper’s single comes with a free 16 bars of instrumental, with no vocals laced in it. Olamide put that deliberately, and via social media, announced a competition for people to bring on their most creative 16-bars to fill that space. First came the celebrity rappers who took the gauntlet, and dropped their golden flow. Ruggedman, Phyno, Lil Kesh and many others are proud fillers of ‘Who you epp’.
But the competition really became a hit with lesser known rappers and singers. There have been works from Slay, Bils, MVP, Pepenazi, Gunzoe, Ms Chief, Ozee, Lypsi, Viktoh, Subzilla, Lowbeek, Ckay, Pryse, and a host of others. This has created a long list of ‘Who you epp’ songs flooding the internet, and offering new versions and extended enjoyment to fans.
The winner of Olamide’s competition won’t just have a cover of the song. He will be the beneficiary of a free feature by Olamide, a free beat/instrumental (paid for by Olamide) and a free video, shot by the highly-rated Mr Moe Musa. That’s the big time for a struggling upcoming act.
What Olamide gains from all this will be the improvement of his stock and his profile. This campaign pays him in 3 ways. First, he gets a hit song. Then he gets more press, and also help's someone’s life. From something so simple as omitting 16 bars off a track the rapper has enriched himself and also touched the life of someone. Execution of the project is still ongoing, with many acts all over the world working their asses off to release a dope ‘Who you epp’ cover.
Olamide intends to ‘epp’ someone with this. It’s fun, has star power backing it, and ultimately is for the good of society. That’s why it’s viral and winning.