As I write this article, I am listening to a shuffled playlist of Ed Sheeran’s whole discography. “Save Myself” remains a personal favourite but as a closeted fan, I won’t admit to being a Sheerio which is the name of his fandom.
Music is undoubtedly a powerful tool and every music lover has a genre of music that caters for their taste. Fans of artiste form a close knit group that monitors the activities of their favourites, help stream and download their songs on digital platforms, buy their CDs, win them awards and better their careers. This close knit friend like family is called a Fandom and have names that set them apart from fans of other artiste. These nicknames are related to the artiste they “Stan”, a term which comes from the song Stan by Eminem.
Some of the fandom names are coined by fans while others are created by the celebrities themselves. In every fandom, there are three types of fans; the hard Stan, the soft Stan and the casual Stan. The hard stans are the die hard fans who take on the leadership roles of organising and recruiting fans into the fandom. They bulk buy albums, stream songs, buy merchandise and are the most rooted fans all artiste wish for.
The soft stans are a little on the chill side. They do their best for their favourites but on the sidelines.
Casual stans are tantamount to first-time soap series or telenovela viewers. They are always fascinated by the characters and their complicated relationships but get really bored after a few days, if that analogy can be used. Casual stans are not as grounded or rooted as hard stans and do the bare minimum.
In Ghana, Shatta Wale is always backed up by SM fans, the name of his fandom and are mostly made up of hard stans which has proven to be really advantageous, has elevated him to an untouchable status and a force to be reckoned with in Ghana’s music industry.