Eedris Abdulkareem Vs 50 Cent: When Will Eedris Stop This 20-year-old Lie

In the last 20 years, Afro-pop artiste, Eedris Abdulkareem, has persistently propagated a false narrative surrounding an unfortunate incident involving himself and the security personnel of American hip-hop and rap star,

Curtis James Jackson, popularly known as 50 Cent, inside a commercial airplane at the local wing of the Murtala Mohammed Airport in Lagos.

This regrettable incident marked the turning point in Eedris’ once-blossoming career and in a desperate attempt to revive it, he has consistently lied and distorted facts about the event.

For someone who has elevated lying into an art form, this might well be Eedris’ Grammy!

Contrary to Eedris’ claims of fighting for the Nigerian music and entertainment sector, particularly for the likes of Damini Ogulu, aka Burna Boy; Ayodeji Balogun, aka WizKid; David Adeleke, aka Davido and others who are currently enjoying the “food wey I cook” (as he often phrases it), the reality of Eedris’ clash with 50 Cent’s security was a selfish, egotistic brawl that not only left him physically bruised but also damaged his professional standing.

When I was with ‘The Guardian’ newspaper, I was deeply involved in the country’s entertainment circle, having personal connections with the stars of that era and I witnessed the incident firsthand.

Eedris, in his prime, believed he deserved a five-star treatment during a show that brought 50 Cent to Nigeria. It was an annual mega music show by a multinational company, which I will try as much as possible not to mention because the incident has caused them enough embarrassment in the last 20 years already. However, Eedris’ unreasonable demands and disruptive behaviour jeopardised the meticulously planned event.

Eedris was hot then and he believed he was the biggest musical act in Africa. In fact, he said that repeatedly during the fracas with 50 Cent’s security. With this mindset, Eedris felt he was not given the five-star treatment during the first leg of the show held at the Tafawa Balewa Square, TBS, Lagos. At a point, he became uncontrollable, making unreasonable demands as against the contract he signed for the show which got everyone miffed. He demanded to close the show in the early morning hours, causing potential chaos as 50 Cent, the headline artist, was already scheduled to close the event. This demand, coupled with his refusal to vacate the backstage when asked, pitched him against everybody, including the organisers.

Now, for those who may not know anything about concert organisation, that looked like a simple demand, right?

Fine, let me explain it to you for your understanding. In planning a show, every artist on the bill is allocated time that he or she would spend on the stage. A big concert is planned to the very last minute and as such, a slight deviation from the set course could undo everything. Every artist knows the exact time he is billed to climb the stage and get out of it. Some artistes get carried away on stage and that is when the DJ who most times doubles as ‘time keeper’ keeps reminding him or her with rapid busts of sounds. Sometimes, you would hear the artist say, “DJ, wait, I dey come, give me small time…” Other artistes ignore the cue and that is when the compere usually steps in and ends his performance. I will like to tell a short story here to drive home this point.

In 1999 or so, Rotimi Martins, aka Alariwo of Africa, was hot with his ‘Yawa Go Gas’ song. He played it at every major show in Lagos. So, Alariwo was to perform at that year’s ‘Wicked N Wild’ show by a tobacco company at the same TBS. He knew the scheduled time he was to get on stage, but Alariwo and his band were at another show (I was told he was playing at the Goethe Institute in Victoria Island, close by). Alariwo arrived about 30 minutes late. He thought as one of the biggest stars then, he would be given a pat on the back and ushered on stage. Whoosai! The ‘Oyinbos’ refused him performing and in frustration, Alariwo turned to us (journalists) backstage and called us names (same way Eedris did), for not assisting him to beg the organisers. I later heard he was asked to refund the performance fee he was paid. I do not know how he sorted things out with the organisers, but the punishment for his irresponsible act resonated across the entertainment industry.

But Eedris, being the ‘biggest star in Africa,’ will not have any of that. He saw it as preferential treatment for 50 Cent because he was an ‘Oyinbo’ (even though he is an African-American) and a denigration of him because he was a Nigerian. That was when the “I fought for the rights of Nigerian musicians” delusion began. So, when everybody was asked to clear the backstage to make room for 50 Cent and his large band to have space, that to Eedris was the last straw and his top cylinder gasket blew.

Of a fact, no other artiste had any business being backstage as at that time except to guzzle the free beer and food that were in excess. A serious artiste should be home or at a club after his performance. But if some wanted to watch 50 Cent perform to learn some new stagecraft or network (which I doubt there would be time for), there is another designated VIP area for that. So, how did it become an issue that people were asked politely (only Eedris did not see the politeness in the tone) to vacate the backstage that he had to create a scene, screaming that Nigerian artistes were being denigrated?

So, I doubt if Eedris slept. Many of us did not sleep after the TBS show because the chartered flight to Port Harcourt for the second leg of the show was announced to leave by 8 am that morning. When I got to the airport, Eedris was already there and for the first time since knowing him and also since he became a star, there were three hefty looking, bulging biceps guys with him. Recall, that was the era Voltron (where is that guy now sef?), the owner of the professional bodyguards outfit was reigning. Voltron’s bodyguards all had a peculiar way they dressed; black T shirts, black boots, black pants and black leather hand gloves etc. That was how those three guys with Eedris were dressed. I saw it as an improvement, yes, because aside from Eedris’ ‘rep’, his musical status then had reached the stage he should be going about with personal bodyguards. Eedris and two of his band boys, I recall the tall, dark, lanky one (he featured prominently in the ‘Nigeria Jaga Jaga’ music video) were all drinking from a bottle of whisky. It was a little bit too early to be drinking whisky, I reasoned, but then, stars have a way they do things.

Shortly, a fellow journalist and friend, Olumide Iyanda, joined me. Eedris was loud, talking at the top of his voice and he was enjoying all the attention he was getting from other passengers who, perhaps, were having the opportunity of seeing him at very close quarters for the first time. It was Olumide who explained to me in Pidgin English that Eedris was spoiling for a ‘final showdown’ and that was what he was saying in mostly Yoruba. Then I knew he was still smarting from what happened at the TBS earlier that morning.

At intervals, officials of the multinational company, organisers of the show, two of them I know very well, would go to Eedris to appeal to him. He did not want to hear any of what they were saying.

News came in that 50 Cent, who was coming from Eko Hotel, was already close by and it was wise everybody boarded the plane to save time. This should be around some minutes past 9am. We all boarded, and surprisingly, before we boarded, I did not see Eedris and his crew, only for me to see them in the ‘First Class’ section of the plane. And because it was a free seating arrangement, I and Olumide found the three seats just immediately behind the ‘First Class’ seats vacant and tucked ourselves in. The same two officials of the company were appealing to Eedris to stand up. Then, I did not know that that section was already designated for 50 Cent and his crew. So, I was wondering why they were telling Eedris and his men to go and find other seats. Other Nigerian artistes were murmuring in disagreement with Eedris’s action just right behind Olumide and I, but Eedris already had his mind made up and that was when for the second time, he said he was the “biggest artiste in Africa just as 50 Cent was the biggest in America”. He was calling his fellow artistes ‘weaklings’ who could not stand up for their ‘rights’.

Related articles

50 Cent Confirms That Dr Dre Will Produce Eminem’s New Album

The Eminem hype cycle has begun. The rapper has been quiet for nearly four years, but fans are feening for what he has to say on his upcoming album….

50 Cent EXPOSES Diddy For Mishandling YK Osiris As His “Boy Toy”

Get ready for a major expose! 50 Cent is about to blow the lid off a shocking truth about Diddy’s treatment of YK Osiris. In this video,…

50 Cent reignites feud with Diddy, accuses him of grooming Lil Baby at star-studded party

Diddy has been accused of grooming young artists for years, and 50 Cent is the latest to speak out. In a recent Instagram post, rapper 50 Cent…

Tina Knowles’ Tearful Plea: Convinced by Jay-Z’s Mother to Bring Beyoncé Back Home.

In this article, it is revealed that Jay-Z’s mother, Gloria Carter, had an emotional encounter with Tina Knowles, Beyoncé’s mother. Gloria begged Tina to persuade her daughter…

Gabrielle Union CONFIRMS DIVORCE After Pictures of Dwyane Wade with Other Women are Leaked

Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wade, once hailed as a power couple, are now making headlines for their marital troubles. Reports suggest that their nine-year marriage is on…

Diddy’s Ex Bodyguard RELEASES New Gay Pictures HUMILIATING Diddy

Gene Deal, former bodyguard to hip-hop mogul Diddy, has recently unleashed a torrent of shocking. Revelations about the behind-the-scenes antics of the entertainment industry, particularly within the…