Yesterday I saw a post by a colleague of mine stating Uganda’s viral kid dancers ‘The Ghetto Kids’ had been featured in French Montana’s video and I was thrilled. Despite him being popular in USA, I honestly hardly know any of his songs except ‘All The Way Up’ and he is with P.Diddy. Nevertheless, it definitely was a good look for the young talented ones to get such a feature.
So I was thrilled and started to watch the video. On sight, I wasn’t happy about the choice of location. Mind you Uganda is definitely amongst the better half of developed countries in Africa, so why chose such slums. However, that really didn’t play on my mind, The main thing that run through my mind was thank God, not even the fully melanated rappers in America are giving Africa kids like these, such a chance. In fact, our own artists are hardly doing so.
So the video was somewhat on the fence for me, until the end came through and just trashed it. A scene where French Montana is a car moving through the rural areas and he is stopped by a soldier, to be honest, what looks like street militias or mercenaries, requesting he gets out the car. He is then kidnapped, with flash shots of impoverished men seeping through mud for diamonds with their bare hands, you know ‘Blood Diamonds’.
Here is what puzzles me, these celebrities, arrive here in planes, jump in Limousines, drive to their luxurious hotels in Africa, party in the big clubs, go to the malls, chill at the beaches if any, and do this once in a while not only just to shoot a video or live shows, but when it comes to shooting videos in Africa, they and their video directors (in this case Spiff TV) take them to unpleasant rural areas and shoot everything bad.
America also has impoverished areas even worst than Africa, why do I say worst? Because upon the broken down houses and torn down buildings, you can barely walk safely in some areas without the fear of getting shot. If French Montana wanted a ghetto video so much he should have stuck to such areas.
French Montana’s video is not what has inspired this, but how it plays it’s part in the continuous narrative that these artist push. They come and enjoy and experience the fabulous side of Africa daily, you will be surprised how easy it is to randomly spot them here. But all their public appearances and videos continue to set off wrong messages. From Rick Ross’s banned Nigerian edition of ‘Can’t Hold Me Back’ to this. Yet their video in America, it’s all lavish life.
I would have honestly loved to have written a nice article about ‘check out the Ghetto Kids in his new video’, but that ending just exposed the narrative of the video directors. Africans we need to stop taking our image lightly, just as Ghanaian took to blast CNN for it’s comments not long ago. There are impoverished areas in every country in large amounts, let’s stop allowing this continuous branding their we are living in mud houses unchallenged. Next time you see pages in Africa pushing ‘The Africa They Don’t Show You’ add French Montana to the list of they alongside CNN and BBC. Nevertheless, for the love of the Ghetto Kids see the video below.