The world recently celebrated International Nelson Mandela Day to commemorate his struggle against and eventual dismantling of the Apartheid regime in South Africa and other repressive regimes around Africa. Mandela day is highly symbolic and represents a rallying point for all liberation movements for freedom, justice and good governance in Africa and around the world. Nelson Mandela spent close to three decades in jail in the course of the liberation struggle. At the collapse of the Apartheid regime in South Africa, Nelson Mandela befittingly became the first black president of the rainbow country.
Complementing the support that the Nigerian Government which was a major source of support for the Anti Apartheid struggle, Nigerian musicians rose to the occasion and played a major role in the struggle. In this review as part of our duty in musicinmyears.com to document history, some of these contributions in form of songs are being listed in no particular order for your reading and viewing pleasure.
I’m pleased to introduce the first artiste to feature on the Music in My Ears Podcast, Moustafa Taco, from Alexandria, Egypt. Music in my ears was meant to document and project Nigerian music History and share Nostalgia. But then we cannot say no to music when the request comes. African music is one, music is universal, and music history is forever. We are proud of Moustafa Taco and his career and highly honoured to be part of his progress.
Moustafa Taco started music with the release of his first album in 2017 and had gone ahead to realise two other albums. Lo Siento is his current single and has just released a video of the song.
Joni Haastrup founded Mono Mono in Lagos after touring Europe with Ginger Baker”s Airfoce II band. Haastrup skipped another leg of European and American tour with Ginger Bakers second tour ensemble the SALT band to fulfil his ambition of running his own show and performing his songs with his band around clubs and venues in Lagos. Other notable members of the band include Baba Kenneth Okulolu and Candido Obajimi. Most members relocated to the United State of America to ply their trade. This episode features this very eclectic band that gave us two successful albums ‘Give Beggars a Chance’ and ‘ The Dawn of Awareness’ both released under EMI Record Label.
With Afrobeats artistes winning major awards around the world we interrupted our current run on Afrofunk music episodes to give kudos to Tems, Burna Boy and others. As usual with the music in my ears podcast, we dig into the historical perspectives of this current rave-of-the-moment scenario. Indeed the success recorded by Nigerian artistes today will soon become part of Nigerian music history and there will be reasons to find references in the news media and the internet. It is not only about the Awards they are winning, but their ability to develop and build their craft and capacity to be on the world stage. Filling major venues like O2 Arena, Madison Square Garden and other major festivals is no mean feat, but something to commend the artists for. At music in my ears, we applaud our musicians for their outstanding performances. Take a bow, Wiz Kidd, Ckay, Davido, Fireboy, Tiwa Savage and all others that are putting Nigeria on the world map in entertainment and for giving us a commodity to export in Afrobeats.
The Funkees was one of the most prominent and star studded band in the Afrofunk era of Nigerian music. The Funkees also called Funkees of Aha had Harry Mosco, Chyke Madu, Jake Sollo, Sony Akpan, Mo Ahidjo, Beckley Jones, Felix Odey amongst others in its line-up making it a very formidable and star studded band.
The Wings of Aba was one of the most prominent Afrofunk band’s in Nigeria. Based in the commercial city of Aba in the South Eastern part of Nigeria, The Wings came off from the echoes of the Nigerian civil war to ease the pains of the losses and tragedy that came from the bloody events, entertaining both soldiers and civilians in the south-east and other parts of the country. The band however suffered its own share of tragedy with the death of their frontman Johnathan ‘Spud Nathan’ Udensi in a tragic accident along with another band member. The event led to a split of the band with one of the fragments called the Original Wings releasing a tribute album in memory of the late front in 1976 to a wide acceptance across Nigeria.
This is a feature on Ofege the Boy Band from St. Gregory, Obalende, Lagos. Like most boy band’s across the world Ofege enjoyed a large followership in their time as one of the biggest bands of the Afrofunk era. The band members include Melvin Ukachi, Paul Alade, Mike Meme, Dapo Olumide, Felix Inneh and Olushoga Benson. Additional support came from Members of the Lagos Afrofunk band BLO. The group recorded and released their records as high school students with the last being ‘higher plane breeze’ in 1978. As with other Boy bands around the world, Ofege enjoyed a lot of followership around the country before their eventual disbandment.
On this episode of music in my ears , we review the times and music of Wrinkars Experience , another band of the Afrofunk era in Nigeria. Wrinkars Experience gave us ‘fuel for love’ which remains an anthem of the Afrofunk music genre.