CEO of Pidgin Music, Panji Anoff says “foolish” journalists are the reason why Reggie Rockstone has been attributed or touted as the creator of hiplife when he is only the Godfather.
The music producer speaking on Accra-based Hitz FM’s Daybreak show revived the debate about the original creator of the genre while in the studio with hiplife artiste and member of "Nananom" the former hiplife group, Sydney Barima.
According to Panji, Reggie Rockstone is merely responsible for the popularity of the genre, but he is not the originator.
“He’s the Godfather of Hiplife. It is foolish journalists who have translated ‘Godfather’ into ‘creator’,” he declared.
He said Talking Drums, Azigiza, and Mahoney P were the real pioneers of the hiplife because they were the first to combine the two genres; hip-hop and highlife together in music. However, he attributed Reggie’s involvement as a major influence in the growth of the movement which grew to become hiplife.
“They convinced Reggie to start doing Twi, because [he] didn’t do Twi before them. He was rapping in English. Reggie came to Ghana and saw that this Twi rap could work,” Panji said.
“How can somebody who is influenced by others be the creator?,” he quizzed
The controversy of who invented hiplife was sparked in 2015 when music producer, Zapp Mallet claimed in an interview that he invented the genre.
“The word ‘hiplife’ had been used to describe the movement before Reggie came to Ghana,” Panjji confirmed.
“Foolish journalists are to blame for the confusion,” Mr Anoff reiterated, “I don’t believe that it is Reggie who wants to take all the credit.”
Barima Sidney also added his voice to the issue but rather chose to speak about how hiplife had grown over the years in comparison to the early 90's when it started