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Rub-a-dub master, Ras Kimono dies at 60

~TheGuardian Nigeria. Monday, June 11, 2018

Ras Kimono
Ras Kimono, a giant of Nigerian music for over three decades, has passed away. He died yesterday morning. Born on May 9, 1958 to parents from Delta State, he recently celebrated his 60th birthday amidst fanfare.
Respected for being a dogged fighter and stickler to perfection, the late musician, performed with top reggae artistes such as, Shaggy, Shaba Ranks, Lee Perry, the late Lucky Dube, Culture, Inna Circle, Steve Wonder, Eve and K.C. and JoJo and a host of others.

He developed his own style of root reggae music that skillfully blended his African roots with classical Jamaican rhythm. This unique genre took him out of the country, where he played in major concerts in the United States, England, Italy, Kenya, Ghana and Papua New Guinea where his Benson and Hedges stadium concerts attracted a record average of 45,000 people per concert.

The last time he visited The Guardian office; he brimmed in confidence, promising to change the trend of music in the country.

He was dressed in a white top, with green, black, yellow and white stripes. He had a blue jean trouser, with brown trainers. His beret was green, yellow and red. He had eyeglasses on. Looking every inch younger, except for the frame that had grown heavier.

"Our music is growing. My only disappointment is that nobody is playing live music anymore. Everybody is miming and that's not good for professional instrumentalists in the music industry," he said.

He continued, tThe problem with youths here is that they are always looking for easy way out to make quick money. Sometimes, you will see young guys come up to say to you, 'uncle I'm into music'. He gives you what he has done, and you will be surprised that the music has no quality, and that it is not done out of passion, but just for the money. They are always seeking easy money and fame. Since there is easy access to laptop and keyboard, you can programme what you want to. To make it worse, a lot of TV stations play these songs. You are now forced to ask what is National Broadcasting Commission doing and why there are no Not To Be Broadcast (NTBB) tag on them. Some of the lyrics are vulgar and are played on air and NBC is not doing anything about it. In the US, there are club versions and radio version. They just do one version and this is what is played on air. Easy lyrics. Some of the youths, who play this music don't have conscience. Give them four to five years and they will fade out completely."

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