It kept resounding in my head after a colleague played it over and over at the office. So when Youtube Nigeria suggested the video of the song to me, I caved in and clicked. How enlightening that experience turned out to be. Even exaggerated frivolities can lead to epiphany. I decided to watch the video again and share some of that insight. My claim is that Dorobucci (music video) captures the imagination of many Nigerians on how intertwined power and self-aggrandisement are.
Here is the link to the video. The video is suitable as social commentary because the producer and the several artistes are as representative a sample as can be. The opening scene is at a CEO boardroom presentation with a pretty female presenting her slides as well as herself to the male CEO, while he and others sip expensive looking drinks. The scene ends with cash opened in a briefcase for all to celebrate which shows that the “CEO” is more a mafia boss than a leader of a corporation, or perhaps the two are not different in the imagination of Nigerians. Nigerians tedn to treat a crook and a statesman/politician the same way without an ethical distinction, but with a benevolent assumption of humanitarian generosity.
The two groups of statesmen and business men (crooks included) are grouped under the name of Big Boys. What Big Boys do is they call the shots; or swing the shots, since the sports of the rich man is Polo. For the less energetic rich men, golf is the next appropriate metaphor for a rich man swinging shots. For favour golf has over polo with the white man, the video captures a Big Boy from a rooftop in Ikoyi (Lagos) taking a swing with his expensive golf club, the ball flies overseas and lands in the courtyard of the White House – a hole in one! The Big Boy is that rich man who swings shots from the business capital and lands effortlessly in the government capital; both are executives after all. With the such easy access into the government domain, and the easy access to “scoring”; it can be interpreted as having the government’s administration in the pocket of the Big Boy. The White House here symbolises any government with considerable global influence; after all globalisation is a phenomenon consuming both in governments and businesses. Nothing appears like progress to the colonised subject than the White House especially when it is occupied by a Black Man.
The Big Boy and Big Girl are further enshrouded with the garment of a celebrity. The video shows this connection effortlessly in subsequent scenes. Business men compete with politicians in this arena for celebrity title. To the uncivil and tabloid-minded public, they two groups are simply Big Boys and Girls treated as celebrities. At this point in the video the two titles (business men and politicians) are now smugged together so that henceforth the video only deals with celebrities. Next we see the glorification of fashion consumerism by a female artiste whose worth and popularity depends on her choice of fashion; she seems to have a personal fashion assistant. Then a male artiste living the celebrity vacation in speedboats filled with foreign light-skinned women. The next artiste sings his part lavishing in fame at a club, showered with fans supplicating at the red carpet… and of course a well decorated woman delivering herself to the club aka the domain of the male artists where he wears a hat like a crown. All of this is celebrity gossip material; fashion, vacation, clubbing and red carpets.
It came as a bit of relief to see the next artiste playing the role of the wife of a Big Boy; so far it has been about male artists having females. Actually the female is still being had here but at least she is milking it and becoming a Big Girl by association. Most wives of Big Boys automatically become Big Girls, just in the same way with offspring. This reflects a reality in Nigeria where relatives of Big Boys/Girls become Big by relation; even in-laws these days enjoy this social privilege. The scene ends with the female artiste slipping into the arms of her Big Boy husband, living like a queen and protected by bodyguards. The song had many artists so it wasn’t a surprise that one more artiste gets his scene acting as a Big Boy who is a big careless spender, gambling James Bond style, and of course surrounded by women, in that rare occurrence of a gambler’s streak.
The final scene is a culmination point of all the several Big Boys and Girls that have been featured in the video. It is a celebrity party mimicking the high-class parties from The Great Gatsby. The parties in The Great Gatsby in a lot of ways are an melting pots for ambiguation between the Crook, the Businessman, the Lobbyist (politician). In two words, the personalities at those parties are Big Boys or Big Girls or Shady Figures.
PS: This is among posts that were written several months ago which I dug up and decided to publish.