Among the uncountable tall list of rappers who have crowded Ghana’s music stage, I personally have unlimited admiration for Sarkodie, Okyeame Kwame, Obrafour for how well they display prowess in their compositions. It is not far-fetched to mention these giants as among the very few who people would always listen to, because what they say on the mic makes a good kick.
But ever since technology took the centre stage of our lives, we have been denied quality music. Anyone jumps onto Fruity Loops to combine sounds and drags a rapper, who says anything merely to kiss the rhythm of the beat. Then it is uploaded onto the internet as music for consumption. So good music is really hard to find.
If you have listened to TIME, the new single from CJbiggerman of MTN Hitmaker fame, you would smile from ear to ear and appreciate how high the gentleman has raised the bar for himself on that track. The song meets the eye and has poked me to throw it into the theatre for an exploratory surgery.
If you have listened to the song, hand me a scalpel and let’s cut into it.
|Album Art – TIME
The artiste explains that he is inspired to write this song to inspire others too. From the onset the song intends to communicate an inspirational message of hard work, and to arouse the feeling for people to make the most out of life. It is all summarised in the phrase, “Make hay whiles the sun shines”. The song appears to make a smooth transition from his recent track, “3 Years” which holds a similar baton of motivation.
CJ as usual put together words that effectively portray a complete theme in the three minutes of the record. The record begins with half a minute of voicelessness to create suspense. In an energised mood (as is characteristic of him) CJbiggerman then opens up the first verse with a punchline, “People dey insult Courage. People dey diss-courage” in a puny, fanciful way and proceeds to imply the short-sightedness of persons who do not see into the future.
The voice delivery incorporates perfectly with the producer’s Hipop beat, and every second of the song is a total respect for the rhythm. However the whole piece is missing in on ad lips. It is in my honest opinion that a better job could have been done on the chorus to keep the tempo of the rap verses flying.
If you are an ardent listener of this rapper, you will attest to his regular use of literary technics in his lyrics. Here in particular, he played around with Metaphors, Rhymes, Simile, Personification, Repetition just to mention a few.
There is a combination of internal and end rhymes in two bars of rap, in one sentence. “Lack of knowledge so my boys perish
. So so pus$y and chilling, that be what my boys cherish
me ya. Dem no see the bigger picture
, the future
A simile compares two unlike quantities by using words the words, ‘Like”, “As” or “Than”. “‘Mɛma
nsuo mu te sɛ
Liptop”, when translated means “I will let you into water like Lipton” is how he compares his intention of bringing down his oppressors to the fate of Lipton in water.
Even though the metaphors diffuse throughout the song, what is more intriguing is the ‘Glaucoma’ hook. In the third verse, CJ laments how people fail to see the future gloom, how badly “they don’t see the future picture… the flashy life, the money in abundance”. In his expression of disappointment, he relates this to the effect of glaucoma, an infection of the eye, which is apparently a cause of their loss of sight for these goodies. Such creativity!
And we can’t also overlook the curly shot he made into the poles of America’s film producing company, Dreamworks. Right in the middle of the song, he employed metaphor to drive home his wish of remaining in the skies after seeing the Moon. It will be hard for you to get this drift if you haven’t seen Dreamwork’s signature animation. You should replay that section and enjoy the cleverness in there.
A metaphor is a figure of speech which makes implied or hidden comparison between two things that are unrelated but share common characteristics.
CJ loves to play on words, every time. A pun is a play on words. It can confidently be said this is the commonest literary device you will find in his songs. “Time” is no exception. We can mention a number of puns: “People dey diss courage (discourage)” “Everybody likes my thing… Martin Luther King”, “Everybody wants to be a Gameboy, come for a cartridge”, “I’m the next big thing, I am a strongman”.
“Everybody likes my thing… Martin Luther King”
Here, an allusion is made together with a pun that is placed inconspicuously. He likens himself to Martin Luther King an American leader, activist and humanitarian who is revered by people all over the world for his intelligent quotes. Whiles relating himself to Luther’s amiability, he makes a pun out of “My thing” and “Martin”. How he successfully does this beats my imagination!
Again he compares himself to Strongman. He says, “I be strongman, I be the next big thing”. Come to think of it, Strongman is a talented Kumasi-based rapper, who was shot to fame by winning the reality rap show, The Next Big Thing.
In an allusion, there is an indirect reference to a person, place, thing or idea; without describing into detail the object to which it refers.
At various junctures of the song, he is found iterating some thoughts by reciting them over again. He proudly repeats “Am the boy with the dream” to declare his passion about what he believes. We also hear him repeat “This boy no dey fear”. “I be the strongman. I be the next big thing”, “For the love of music”. These were intentionally done for emphasis, to leave them ringing in the minds of the listener. And of course, his brand signature, “Zero Days To Stardom” is cunningly repeated for the same reason.
The subject of the song as mentioned is to inspire and arouse the feeling of urgency in the listener. It further motivates the individual to take up life and work towards its success. The songwriter, however sought to walk his own talk too. He mentions how he intends to do as he preaches. For him to have said “I want to land a platinum rank with my first album” is worth taking note of. Another example of how exemplary he is, is his statement, “I will be way up and feel blessed”.
Just like how the average creative writer will garnish his work with quotes from famous people,” Time” is given a similar treat with some quotes to keep the concept alive. They include, “Lack of knowledge my people perish”, “Procrastination is thief of time” and “Had I known is always at last”. They were fixed at vantage points and blended very nicely into the song.
CJ makes it obvious that his career has received support from a group of loyalists. As the song fades, he allows for appreciation to be given to his team of supporters who are mentioned as Kasa Record, Hashtag Music Group, Harmaboy, K Vizzle, Cali, Blue, Qhola. And then there is Magnom, the producer he’s become fond of lately. The attitude of gratitude is necessary for every human.
The song was produced by Mynus and mixed by Qhola Beats.