Alte Music: The Clan of Nigeria’s Creative Misfits

Celebrating Nigeria’s Army of Creative Misfits Marching on Under the Alte Movement

There is a new crop of young creatives deviating from the norm, creating magic without the societal restrictions and being the difference with their eclectic blend of genre, fashion and style. It is a new era in sound and artistic narrative for the music industry.

The music started off mainly on SoundCloud, with the sound experimental, the topics introspective, and their influences, and audiences, coming from all over the world. Though the early followers grew organically, it surely set the tone for the visual and sonic representation of what the vibe now represents.

DRB Lasgidi members, Teezee and BOJ coined the term, ‘alté’. Teezee explained that ‘alté’ – short for alternative – is “when something is different from the norm… an alternative to what is expected”.

The word was formed circa 2010, almost around the time Black Magic started gaining notoriety for pushing his brand of wavy, dark alternative music. The former Synik8 artist is credited with being a big influence on today’s movement, sonically.

All pioneers in their own right, neither artist could do anything to stop the term from inadvertently creating some form of music classicism, due to the upper middle class backgrounds of those that identify with the sub-culture.

I’m proudly into alte, it is one of (if not my fave music genre), it’s replete with amazing lyrics, as it has a calming effect and a superb flow with incredible artistic essence.

It has an incredible and unique blend, a mix of a variety of totally artistic fusion of a variety of genres, and artists plying this genre are a bunch of creatives, trying out several unpopular vibes, making it theirs and turning it into a masterpiece.

Burna Boy, an alte legend has been making massive headway with the general acceptance of his music, finally getting the recognition and overdue accolades he duly deserves and has with that, brought hope to the acceptance and the readiness of local acceptance of the alté crowd.

It’s beautiful to know that there are a crop of musicians braving the odds, being a break from the norm and curating classic and quality songs with topnotch production.

Alte music has a range of options that one readily can pick from, and available for every single mood or occasion. From Tay to Juls to SDC, to Lady Donli, and other amazing artistes plying this genre, there are a plethora of classics to choose from.

Alte is relatable; from the rhythm, lyrics and vibe. Even if you don’t particularly enjoy the music, you just can’t deny the absolute brilliance and beauty of the song and the process involved. With one of the biggest Alte groups being the Show Dem Camp, their flow is a potpourri of everything amazing.

You’re stuck on this traditional vibe that has this modern feel that is both beautiful and intense. It makes you want to put your hair down, cross your legs, and unwind and that in itself is the drawing effect.

It is that music you would connect with knowing that you wouldn’t get offended by wack lyrics, crap production or inconsistent rhythm.

Alte artistes are known for creating, showcasing and promoting fashion styles and genre-bending music which strongly delves from the norm. Though underrated, unappreciated and sometimes misunderstood by the public, this crop of newbies are blazing a trail irrespective.

With flag bearers of the culture like Zamir, Santi, Odunsi, Tay, WurlD, Lady Donli, Maka, Wavy the Creator, you may criticize the dressing, the larger-than-life attitude, and perceived outward arrogance of the alté crowd, but you can also see it as a means for those whom society sees as misfits to express themselves.

They’ve certainly created a buzz and have given us a double take on our artistic and cultural aesthetics.

These young artistes are the future, playing a pivotal role in pushing the boundaries of mainstream culture to promote paradigm shifting transformation and they’ve been overly successful in creating a niche and have been taking their spots at the table meant for musical greats.

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