Music of Tuesday, 28 June 2011
Source: Eugene Osafo-Nkansah/Peacefmonline.com
One of the biggest musical event “020 Live” which took Ghana by storm last year, organized and sponsored by giant Mobile Telecommunication Company, Vodafone, seem to be going through some bad patches this year.
Even though Vodafone officials are tight-lipped on what is going on with the grand event which was well received and patronized by Ghanaians when it was introduced last year, Peacefmonline.com investigation reveals some interesting goings-on.
Credible information available to Peacefmonline.com indicate Vodafone made an attempt to bring R&B super star, singer-songwriter, record producer, and actor, Ne-yo (real name Shaffer Chimere Smith, Jr.) to headline the event this year, but in the middle of the negotiations it appeared the “Miss Independent” hit maker will not be able to make it to Ghana.
Peacefmonline.com sources at Vodafone say reasons for Ne-yo’s inability to perform in Ghana was because organizers of the show felt the Saturday, 7th May 2011, date was inappropriate as the Easter celebrations were just around the corner and all attention would be shifted to Kwahu. Besides, having set a high mark with the organization of the maiden event, Vodafone believed time was not on their side to really publicize the “020 Live” show in order to achieved the desired impact. As a consequence, the organizers planned to reschedule but Ne-yo finally bowed out because he had been fully booked for the rest of the year after May.
The organizers moved on and opened new negotiations with American R&B singer, songwriter, dancer, and actor, Chris Brown (real name Christopher Maurice), which seemed hopeful. A source disclosed to Peacefmonline.com that Chris Brown agreed to perform live in Ghana on Republic Day, Friday July 1, 2011 but the organizers were faced with yet another challenge.
Like the first edition, the organizers wanted to stage the event in the Dome at the Accra International Conference Center, but unfortunately, the 5000 capacity Dome had been booked by Bolaray’s Empire Entertainment to stage the first ever “Ghana Meets Naija” concert on the same day. Sources disclosed to peacefmonline.com that though Vodafone officials made several efforts to strike a deal with Bolaray, C.E.O of Empire Entertainment to postpone his event to give way to the “020 Live” Concert, all their attempts proved futile.
Chris Brown Peacefmonline.com sources further revealed that the organizers tried to convince Chris Brown to perform at an open air centre like the Ohene Djan Sports Stadium or the Labadi Pleasure Beach, but Chris Brown and his management refused the offer because the “Look At Me Now” hit maker did not want the rain to ruin his first ever performance in Ghana.
Our sources further revealed that attempts by the organizers to transport a mobile event venue facility similar to the Dome, from Nigeria proved impossible, because of time constraints. Chris Brown and his management, who agreed initially to perform in Ghana on July 1, have since refunded to the organisers, part payment of the money they received for the concert. Thus, Chris Brown is also out of the picture.
It will be recalled that the “020 Live” concert produced by Rockstar for Vodafone was introduced last year to celebrate a year of Vodafone’s operations in Ghana, and Vodafone promised to make it an annual event where an international artiste will headline the show every year. The maiden edition staged last year on May 22th, was headlined by Nigerian twin super stars P-Square, Mo-Hit Squad (also from Nigeria) and Ghanaian artistes - Richie, Eazzy, Sarkodie, 4x4, Ruff N Smooth among others.
It was reported in the Saturday June 11, 2011 edition of The Mirror newspaper the event was scheduled to come off this June with the headline “Vodafone 020 Live Concert In June”. The last paragraph of the story in the Mirror stated “At the time of going to press Vodafone was preparing to host a media launch of this year’s event”. But up till now, there has not been any such media launch and absolutely no official word whatsoever from Vodafone.
All attempts by Peacefmonline.com to contact an official from Vodafone to comment on the issue have proven futile. For now, the organizers have not made any official statement as to whether the highly-anticipated musical event will come off or not, but, the media, patrons of the event and Ghanaians in general who were promised a yearly affair, are still waiting to attend their favorite 020 Live Concert or a least a word from the organizers.