Mohamed Mushaijamukuru Kimbugwe
On the seventh of August, Bebe Cool hosted his Friends to what is arguably the concert of the Year and I for one learned voluminous things that other musicians too can learn from Bebe Cool. What happened at Serena on Friday was part of what taking Ugandan music to another level is all about.
Before we even look at the fact that forty VVIP and VIP tables were sold out and that the venue was filled to capacity, let’s discuss packaging, branding and marketing. Bebe Cool invested time, money and sophistication in a 14 track Go Mama album, packaged and branded it well and made it is easy to market.
That is exactly where Ugandan music should be headed; an era of professional music business which includes crafting an appealing product and making it attractive to the buyer (music fan). Bebe Cool nailed that aspect.
It has been his trend for close to three years now, of attracting high end consumers to his concerts and the consistency with which he is doing it is amazing. Therein lay a lesson for so many others. Musicians must attract the interest of such people who would otherwise not get bothered by Ugandan music. It’s called breaking frontiers.
Looking at the concert itself, the word massive would be an understatement! Fenon put their best foot forward with great production and a whole lot of aesthetic dynamics. From stage, sound and light to the ambience in the hall, one would feel they were in the right place, equal to their money.
That Bebe Cool has one of the biggest stage manifestations in Africa is an obvious matter. However, he did not take things for granted. The friends of Bebe Cool concert spoke lots of effort and a deliberate desire to serve revelers with nothing but the best.
With his resident (non-hired) Gagamel Band awesomely costumed and exhibiting proficiency, an energetic, skillful and intelligently crafted performance oozed out Bebe Cool. This was also complimented by acts from Nandujja, Ragga Dee, Apass, Michael Ross and Tickie Tah among others.
My only problem was with the fact that Ugandan events service providers often times forget to focus on what appear as small things, even when they have done an amazing job. How could Fenon for example, fail to have two appropriate and working wireless microphones?!
That aside, any objective entertainment commentator and music fan would agree that the Friends of Bebe Cool concert was massive, professional and gave value for money.
It was a clear attestation that Bebe Cool gets better by the day and that even after so many years in the industry, he is still thirsty for growth and is filled with the desire to take his trade to world class standards.