It is that time again the hottest entertainment venues suddenly go cold.
This has left some cashless merrymakers pretending to be working hard when they are hardly working. This has since forced, some entertainment-starved to search for alternatives to keep them busy until musicians, dramatists and poets return from their deserved holiday.
But after patronising entertainment shows throughout the festive season, I can testify that artists’ relationship with fans is conditional—on cash basis.
Of course, our conditional lovers deserve credible awards because they are nothing without authentic recognition. Yet, some Malawians seem to think arts awards are a get-rich-quick business although global examples show it is a selfless obligation of a believable few to confer status on achievers.
Amid the mushrooming of briefcase awards, uncertainty hovers over some one-hit awards business which donated lifetime honours to a faded composer in recognition of a 1970s song that only ended on MBC Radio because it praises the house of Malawi’s founding president Kamuzu Banda.
Maybe, I should concentrate on artists’ seasonal love for fun-seekers.
Although entertainment matters more in low moments, musician Mlaka Maliro this week argued that artists are on recess because most show-goers are cashless after overspending on Christmas and New Year festivities. Similarly, Black Missionaries manager Ray Harawa argued that they are afraid of the rains which scare away fans.
There is gospel truth in Mlaka’s sentiment—although it may not water down the palatability of Blacks’ jazzy flattery to those who need some smiles amid the battle against January financial blues.
Fortunately, the fun-seekers have themselves to blame for partying as if the world were really going to end last December, as one false prophet foretold.
Needless to go deeper, artists are not brainless businesspeople. When the audience forgets their heads and start to spend senselessly in the name of fun, the stage masters will always remember that theirs is a commercial activity that thrives on cash transactions.
May General January and his arrows teach us to live within our means.