OP-UNEDITED | On Dammy Krane: Champagne Living, Palmwine Income – By Chiagoziem Onyekwena
By Chiagoziem Onyekwena
Last week, Dammy Krane was busted in the US for allegedly using a stolen credit card to pay for a private jet from Miami to D.C. According to police reports, he was also found with 7 credit cards, 4 of which weren’t his. The Fuji-Pop star is currently out of jail after posting bail but will be in court on June 23rd for his arraignment. He is facing a 9-count charge, including fraud and grand theft. The embattled singer posted a video on Thursday proclaiming his innocence and followed it up with a new song “Off Point” that doesn’t address the issue but at least takes advantage of the attention he’s getting – lemons to lemonade. But if he’s convicted, Dammy Krane faces significant jail time and may have to kiss his once-promising singing career goodbye. I’m not one to kick a man when he’s down but his predicament is a teachable moment, so grab a seat.
Dammy Krane is one of those celebrities on social media that, if you follow, could absolutely make you hate your day job. Private jets, fur coats and exotic cars, this singing of a thing must really be paying off. Born to a father who worked in the music business and being the protégé of one of Africa’s greatest artists in 2Baba, Dammy was destined for bigger things. Not to mention that he is super-talented and effortlessly entertaining himself, Dammy really had all it took to be successful in music and acquire those flashy things the proper way. Alas, the singer’s A-list lifestyle and C-list status don’t match up, and just like two black parents who gave birth to a snow-white baby, who wasn’t an albino, we have questions.
Dammy Krane has been on the verge of a breakthrough for some time now. He tied with Burna Boy for the Rookie of the Year at the 2012 Headies, in a year that their contemporaries Davido and Wizkid won Next Rated and Revelation of the Year respectively. Dammy’s debut album, The Enterkraner, was released 2 years after. Unfortunately, by many accounts, the project wasn’t commercially successful for Hypertek Records. The popularity of Dammy’s breakout single, “My Dear” wasn’t enough to push the album, so after initially planning to build Hypertek around his young protégé, 2Baba placed the label on ‘mid-term break’ after he and Dammy parted ways.
After the split, Dammy forged ahead but still hasn’t been able to live up to his immense promise. It wasn’t that long ago that he was being mentioned, if not in the same sentence, then at least in the same paragraph as Wizkid and Davido, but sadly, the closest Dammy ever came to superstardom was when he was throwing stones at them. Dammy Krane has accused both singers of stealing from him at different times. In 2013, he accused Davido of copying the “Skelewu” dance from him and just last year, he accused Wizkid of reusing his songs without permission; the two men even ended up brawling at a Lagos nightclub.
Thankfully, all parties have made up – Dammy Krane and Davido are now business partners and have released an EP-worth of music together, while Dammy’s beef with Wizkid was reportedly squashed right after their bloody tussle. But just like the scar below his lip that he sustained from the incident, the damage to Dammy Krane’s reputation was irreversible. Within an elite class of young musicians, he became typecast as the dropout who couldn’t compete with his peers on the charts, so he resorted to other means.
Speaking of other means, there has to be another way the singer was making money – you don’t have to be his personal accountant to see that. You also don’t need to be a lawyer to find holes in the defense case he seems to be building. Dammy Krane and his family claim that the singer was on his way to a show when he was arrested. They claim that his show promoter and co-defendant Chukwuemeka Ilochonwu was responsible for handling the travel logistics and that Dammy had no idea how the jet was booked.
But without a hit song in his home country in a long time, and without a new album to promote in almost 3 years, any show promoter that pays for a ticket upwards of $18,000 for Dammy Krane to travel and perform is either incredibly generous, or incredibly stupid. Besides, what about the other credit cards that he was reportedly found with; do they belong to the show promoter as well? Even more questionable is Dammy Krane’s close relationship with Sinzu (Sauce Kid), a relative and a person he calls his ‘mentor’. Sinzu was recently busted in the States for a similar offence, in a textbook case of show me your friends and I’ll tell you who you are.
Dammy Krane will have his day in court. While I wish him well, I will not be supporting the #FreeDammyKrane movement because the singer is not the victim, the person whose credit card was allegedly stolen is. I say allegedly because Dammy is innocent until proven otherwise but he is already guilty of poisoning the mind of the youth. Dammy Krane, and some of his colleagues in music, portray a lavish lifestyle and lead us to believe they worked hard for it, but all that glitters isn’t gold, sometimes it’s just gold-plated. If anything, we too are victims because they oppress the impressionable among us with their fake lives. My Math teacher in primary school would say, if you show the answer but don’t show your ‘working’ then something isn’t adding up. If you follow artists such as Dammy Krane blindly, you will soon do anything to get rich.
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