LAGOS STATE-NIGERIA, Thursday February 13, 2020/www.gbafrica.net/ – His death was confirmed by his record label, Premier Records, whose project manager, Michael Odiong, said that Nigerian highlife musician Victor Olaiya (age 89) had passed away at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital on 12 February.
Popularly referred to as Dr Victor Olaiya, the highlife trumpeter was born in Calabar, southern Nigeria. He was introduced to music at an early age and learnt to play the bombardon and the French horn. After leaving school he moved to Lagos in 1951. He was accepted by Howard University in the US to study civil engineering but chose music as a profession instead.
Braving parental disapproval, he played with the Sammy Akpabot Band, the Old Lagos City Orchestra and the Bobby Benson and His Jam Session Orchestra before forming his own group, The Cool Cats, which was later renamed to the All Stars Band when it was booked to play the 1963 International Jazz Festival in Czechoslovakia.
The band was known for an extensive highlife repertoire that included tracks like ‘Omopupa’, ‘Aigana’, ‘Pambotoriboto’, ‘Opataritius’, ‘Mo fe Muyan’, ‘Jemila’, ‘Kosowo Lode’, ‘Odale Ore’, ‘So Fun Mi’ and ‘Omolanke’. Many of Olaiya’s songs have been covered by various artists over the decades.
He was also known as ‘The Evil Genius of Highlife Music’. “Highlife music is 10% inspiration and 90% perspiration,” he told Nigerian publication The Guardian. “I am called ‘evil genius’ because I make my fans sweat through dancing while enjoying my music. To make a difference in the music, you need to sweat.”
Olaiya’s music bridged Ghanaian highlife and various Nigerian sounds that would eventually become Afrobeat. He often said that Fela Kuti, the originator of Afrobeat, learnt to play music in his band. Both Fela Kuti and drummer Tony Allen played with Olaiya before finding success with their own projects.
The All Stars Band was selected to play at a state ball when Queen Elizabeth II visited Nigeria in 1956, and performed at a number of state functions when Nigeria gained independence in 1960. Olaiya shared the stage with Louis Armstrong and other international acts in the 1950s and ‘60s. During the Nigerian Civil War of 1967-70, his band entertained Nigerian troops. The Cool Cats also travelled to the Congo to perform for UN troops.
Olaiya released numerous albums during his long career, including one with Ghanaian highlife musician ET Mensah, and later remade his track ‘Baby Jowo’ alongside 2Face Idibia.
“Devastated by the news of your passing,” 2Baba wrote on Instagram. “Dr Victor Olaiya – maestro, mentor, legend. Thanks for the beautiful music. Thanks for the inspiration. Blessed for the honour of sharing a mic and stage with you. Rest in peace baba.”
Olaiya played regularly at the Stadium Hotel in Surulere, Lagos, until 2016 when his doctor recommended that he stop performing live due to ill health.
(Source: Music In Africa)
Burna Boy Is Hitting The Road With His “Twice As Tall” World Tour
LAGOS, NIGERIA, February 22nd, 2020/www.gbafrica.net/ Burna Boy hasn’t stopped moving since releasing his 2019 album, “African Giant,” which came with nominations at both the Grammys and BRIT Awards and a trophy for the Best International Act at the BET Awards.
Burna Boy will be embarking on a long run of shows that will take him across North America and Europe.
The “Twice As Tall” world tour will kick off in May in Atlanta, and will see Burna Boy playing concerts across the US, Canada, Norway, France, Portugal, UK, Netherlands, Sweden, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland and more locations.
Joyce Blessing Premieres A Smooth Live Performance Of Latest Jam
GREATER ACCRA – GHANA, Saturday February 22, 2020/www.gbafrica.net/ – Joyce Blessing has finally released the much anticipated medley dubbed “Aye Ma” (Running Over). The songs were recorded live at the singer’s DOXAZO Experience held in Accra ,Ghana December last year.
Joyce Blessing goes all out on this new one beautifully dressed in a colourful African Kente Cloth. She elaborates on the overflow of Blessings bestowed unto her by God and how far the good Lord has brought her. Production was done by Rythmz Africa and DaveJoy Productions.
King Promise Shares A New Single In 2020
GREATER ACCRA – GHANA, Saturday February 22, 2020/www.gbafrica.net/ – Afro-beats sensation, King Promise, has debuted 2020 with his much anticipated captioned “Sisa”. The tune talks about “Sweet love turned Sour. Afro-beats newest Powerhouse, King Promise, sings about a relationship in a changing phase. A situation where a love one so sweet starts turning cold.”
“Until We Unite, The Industry Will Always Lag – Shatta Wale
GREATER ACCRA – GHANA, Friday February 21, 2020/www.gbafrica.net/ – Charles Nii-Armah Mensah, a Ghanaian Reggae/Ragga & Dance-hall artiste is calling for unity among all Ghanaian recording and performing artistes to join forces in solving issues affecting the stagnant nature of Ghana music industry.
Popularly christened Shatta Wale, the Ghana Music industry is faced with tones of problems that is seeing it deteriorate at a pacy state and the only way to drive the music industry to its rightful apex is to bury personal differences and tackle the problems affecting it by it’s root together.
Shatta Wale has proven beyond every reasonable doubt that, aside his other side, he is very passionate about the music industry and willing to play a pivotal role to see Ghana music at its pinnacle, because elevating the music industry isn’t a solo endeavor. He made these statements in a Facebook post sighted by www.gbafrica.net
The music industry consists of the companies and individuals that earn money by creating new songs and pieces and selling live concerts and shows, audio and video recordings, compositions and sheet music, and the organizations and associations that aid and represent music creators.
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