First off, let’s say shout-out to Shizzi and Sarz. They brought great fun to a tough situation..
Coronavirus has changed the world and the way we operate. After this nightmare is over, the world will never remain the same again.
Now, we are forced to live an internet-obsessed life where data reigns supreme and demand for electricity hits an all-time high. If our parents used to criticise our digital device-obsessed lifestyles before, they’d prefer that obsession now if it keeps us alive.
On Sunday, March 29, 2020, President Muhammadu Buhari finally heeded the calls of numerous Nigerians on social media. He appeared for an extended period of time and delivered the inevitable – Lagos and Abuja will be on lockdown for 14 days, save for certain enterprises. For some Nigerians like this writer, it continued the trend of work-from-home.
For others, it was much-needed relief as their companies would not have granted them a break. More than ever before, millennials and generation zers are camped out on the internet, seeking the most exciting avenue to exert their energies on. For a long time now, TikTok and Triller content and #Challenge Culture have kept things interesting – shout-out to our beautiful women.
But over the weekend, things changed as Americans – who are also on lockdown – upped the ante. First off, it was a battle of songwriters to keep people interested as legendary songwriters, The Dream and Sean Garrett locked friendly horns to play a came of manhood swinging and measurement. We also discovered that The Dream was on the initial hook of Jay Z‘s smash hit single, ‘Holy Grail’ which eventually featured Justin Timberlake.
Thus, they instigated a few battles and threw certain names in the air. Luckily, one battle stuck; Sarz vs Shizzi. Both hitmakers whom Phylix’s Blog Nigeria ranked at three and four respectively on a list of the top 10 producers of the 2010s gracefully accepted the challenge and they both posted digital artworks.
Now, these are great men who have helped shape the era of modern Nigerian music that’s purely driven by pop. Sarz is a 15-year veteran whose career started with The Trybesmen and Eldee as a teenager while Shizzi made the earliest of his seven-year stay in South Africa, they are contemporaries who matter to the creation and the exportation of Nigerian pop music.
Battle of The Hits
Nonetheless, Nigerians had something to look forward to. It took the edge off and created a needed diversion. At 10 pm, Sarz came online first and seconds later, Shizzi joined him with a face mask. Ladies and gentlemen, the comments were filled.
Attendees included Davido, Don Jazzy, Kel P, Peruzzi, ECool, Bizzle Osikoya, Ayomide Tayo and more. Later on, legendary American producers, Timbaland and Swizz Beatz joined the viewers and it was epic. For two hours and thirty minutes, Nigerians were entertained by two of our finest producers.
What many thought would have been a bloodbath in favour of Sarz turned into an enduring battle as Shizzi gave an amazing account of himself. At its height, Shizzi and Sarz had 22.2K live viewers across the world. Throughout the time, the men traded hits upon hits and showed each other measured respect – especially Shizzi.
In total, Shizzi and Sarz played a total of 81 songs – Sarz played 41 songs while Shizzi played 40 within two hours and thirty-two minutes. Some of the key moments were purely driven by nostalgia and excitement or even both. For a lot of people, they didn’t realize Shizzi produced ‘Rands and Naira (Remix)’ and Wizkid‘s ‘Body‘ until the battle began.
For Sarz, people know him by his tags. His key moments were purely driven by nostalgia when he played songs like ‘Ghetto’ by Shank, ‘Joor Oh‘ by Jahbless and ‘See Drama‘ by Lord of Ajasa. It was also interesting when Shizzi said he doesn’t know YQ‘s ‘I Like Girls’ which was produced by Sarz. It’s not Shizzi‘s fault, he was not in the country at the time.
Shizzi forced Sarz to come into the 2010s where he (Shizzi) excelled. Sarz obliged and they battled.
One of the greatest talking points on the night; unreleased music. Sarz went into the infamous ‘hard drive music’ of Wizkid and pulled out his original ‘One Dance‘ verse. Now, this is longer and more detailed than the one Black Coffee had. At some point, it seems Wizkid actually wrote a significant chunk of the song.
Sarz also played two other Wizkid releases; a random song and another ridiculous song on which Wizkid sang in patois. For his part, Shizzi played an amazing song by Davido featuring Wale, he played a Davido and Akon song and played an unreleased version of Davido‘s ‘Blow My Mind’ featuring Meek Mill and song on which Wizkid features Swizz Beatz.
All in all, the biggest takeaway from the unreleased music session is that Wizkid is his own worst enemy. Those three unreleased songs are better than anything he released in 2019. He doesn’t even need to break a sweat to record new songs for Made In Lagos if he has songs of that calibre in his hard drive.
Instead of dropping quality songs, uncle has been busy releasing ‘vibes’ and ‘vibes’ of monotonous music for the better part of two years. Wizkid can do better, I hope he realizes he’s a legend now.
Sarz. To be honest, Shizzi played some amazing records, but Sarz‘s status, versatility and dexterity as one of the greatest Nigerian producers of all time shone through. To be honest, the gap might seem close, but it was slightly wide.
Both men then nominated Rexxie vs Kel P and Pheelz vs Masterkraft as the next battle.
What is life without Poco Lee?
I’ll tell you what, nothing. Throughout the two-hour duration, Poco Lee was busy infusing adlibs and anecdotes into the conversation. Here are some;
Who else witnessed Poco Lee’s Cruise? pic.twitter.com/OmudDat4q6
— TheRawdeeyaOfLagos ❗❗ (@therawdeeya) March 31, 2020
Poco Lee no geh joy???? pic.twitter.com/xFXkfodNta
— Stubborn brat (@stubbornbrattt) March 30, 2020
Is poco lee maddd? ???? pic.twitter.com/iSCrCLiEJL
— Aisha Oga Madam? (@Sisi_tomi) March 30, 2020
Davido and Wizkid reign supreme
Ladies and gentlemen, it’s no coincidence anymore than almost anything comes down to Davido vs. Wizkid. Right now on Twitter, Davido and Wizkid are trending for what simply happened on Battle of The Hits. When you are a legend, you are a legend. Give it up for both men.
There’s more to come.