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Showing posts with label Entertainment. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Entertainment. Show all posts

See what our music stars are doing to the world: They ignite fire from Lagos to the whole world

By Ehi Braimah
(Braimah is a public relations and marketing strategist based in Lagos)
VANGUARD Nigeria. Saturday, March 23, 2019

Nigeria's music culture ignites fire from Lagos to Accra, Nairobi, Dubai,
Johannesburg, Cape Town, London, Toronto, Houston and Atlanta

On election day for governors in 29 States and State Houses of Assembly seats on Saturday March 9, 2019, my family and I were having a late breakfast at about noon and Trace Naija, the popular music channel on DSTV, was on and featuring songs by top Nigerian artistes.

Then I popped this question to no one in particular: who is your favourite Nigerian music artiste and why? My daughter, a keen music follower with her eyes on media arts as a possible future vocation, answered me and announced Wizkid and Davido because of the lyrics, beat, tempo and rhythms of their songs. Wow, I exclaimed! She explained further that their songs are popular and relate well with a youthful audience.

From Lagos to Accra, Nairobi, Dubai, Johannesburg, Cape Town, London, Toronto, Houston and Atlanta, just to name a few places, Nigerian music, sometimes branded as Naija music, has created a new culture of entertainment, excitement and enjoyment as popular dance hall music in those places. Be it a bar, nightclub, lounge or restaurant, music lovers gyrate to the beat coming out of the sound monitors that are recognised and celebrated as Nigerian music.

Two years ago in Nairobi, my host Uche and I visited Club 40/40, Kiza Lounge and Black Diamond where 'Naija' pop music is played steadily. I had the same experience in Atlanta, USA, last October when Ernest, Ralph and I visited Sage restaurant, Little Lagos restaurant, Buckhead Loft, Whiskey Mistress and Regent Lounge.

I'm told that new lounges and restaurants such as Blue Lagoon and Ace also celebrate Nigerian music by Wizkid, Davido, Run Town, Olamide, Tekno, Burna Boy and so on. The effect is usually spontaneous – you just get up and begin to shake your body without any prompting to the unmistakable beats in the songs. The beats give the songs a unique Nigerian identity - a product exported from Nigeria.

When Dr. Reuben Abati interrogated this subject about 10 years ago in the Guardian as the newspaper's editorial board chair and columnist, he wrote that the lyrics in the music by most Nigerian artistes were meaningless and disgusting. The reactions from different quarters, especially the music industry, were swift and defiant and the matter became highly controversial at the time.

The artistes and their promoters fought back vehemently, challenging Dr Abati to a dwell in the court of public opinion and he had to publish countless rejoinders on the matter. Between then and now, the successes of our pop music stars have been remarkable and their achievements profound, thereby earning recognition globally.

Even if you do not agree with content and messaging strategy of the lyrics, the fact remains that the music produced is very popular, enjoyable and hilarious to the music consumer, and very danceable, too. There was a gap our artistes identified which they filled and the result was the big bang effect - they suddenly became popular and began to make waves, and they have never looked back since then.

Popularity and celebrity status varies among the music stars. Fame, which usually comes with a price, may come too early for some of our rising and well established stars, and when there is no consistency in their respective musical repertoire or when the successes achieved are not properly managed, it could spell trouble and declining fortunes may set in.

Stardom means experiencing a new world of bling bling, living in luxurious homes, making significant fashion statements, driving exotic cars and hiring private jets. For the male folks, women are never in short supply; being super stars actually means living life to the fullest. As the discussions continued over the late breakfast, my daughter revealed a Vanguard newspaper story where Mark Dayton, governor of Minnesota in the United States of America, declared October 6 every year as Wizkid Day. That's truly a big deal. It is remarkable.

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."

Deep inside the red-light district: happenings in Lagos strip clubs

Written by Ademola Olonilua
~Punch Nigeria. Sunday, February 11, 2018.

Catching fun, especially at night, has become a habit for many fun seekers in Lagos. For such people, the prominent places where they choose to catch their fun at night include bars and strip clubs. The go-to place for those who love to turn their X-rated fantasies into realities is usually the strip club. But strip clubs are not easy places to spot in Lagos, except if the fun seeker knows how to look beyond the surface. So, it could be difficult to locate one as there are no eligible signs to advertise their locations, so it is normally a case of, 'if you know, you know.'

Although there are choice strip clubs, both on the Island and the mainland; for the mainland, the clubs' colonies seem to be Allen Avenue and the Government Reservation Area, Ikeja. To spot one, fun seekers only look out for a neon sign or an electronic advertising sign with flickering lights, usually coloured blue and red with what appears to be the drawing of a naked woman.

Funnily enough, Ikeja is the commercial hub of Lagos during the day and also at night. With banks and other business firms situated in the district, human and vehicular traffic in the area during the day is usually heavy and at night, it still comes alive courtesy of the bright lights which seem to focus on the pubs, clubs and even commercial sex workers that conduct their business on the streets.

To a large extent, Ikeja is the red-light district of Lagos State.

Around one of the popular streets in GRA, Ikeja is a popular strip club. While most businesses have locked their doors and closed for the day by 9 pm, that is the time this establishment is resuming for the business of the night, and it takes it right until the following morning.

When Saturday PUNCH visited the establishment at about 9:30 pm on Wednesday, it was obvious that the 'shop' had just opened. Within minutes, the vast compound, which has a large space as its car park, was quickly filled with exotic cars; a testament to the class of people the joint caters for.

It is therefore not surprising that to get into the club as a man on Saturdays; their peak period, a fee of N5,000 is required and on Sundays, the price drops to N3,000. While the ladies pay N3,000 on Saturday and N2,000 on Sundays. Other days are free but the hefty men at the gate never forget to politely ask: 'Sir, anything for your boy even if na one bottle of beer?' Invariably, visitors are sometimes forced to part with money and since it is a high-end club, the bouncers at the door normally smile home.

56 countries, 9 states indicate interest in FESTAC"77@40 - CBAAC DG

~Vanguard Nigeria. Wednesday, October 25, 2017.

Fifty-six countries and nine states have indicated interest to participate in the one weeklong commemoration of FESTAC"77@40 beginning on Nov.6 in Lagos.

Dr Ferdinand Anikwe, the Director-General, Centre for Black Arts and African Civilisation (CBAAC), told newsmen in Lagos that the seven-day programme would end on Nov.11.

Newsmen report that Nigeria hosted the first World Blacks and African Festival of Arts and Culture (FESTAC) in 1977 at the National Theatre Complex, Iganmu, Lagos.

Newsmen report that Nigeria's hosting of the FESTAC led to the building of FESTAC Town by the Federal Government then for guests and participants from different parts of the world.

Anikwe said: "We have finally decided to kick start the commemoration of FESTAC"77@40.

"We will be using the University of Lagos Sports Complex, National Theatre Complex, the Federal Housing Authority Field, Festac Town and Golden Tulip Hotel.

"The objective of the festival is to seek and re-establish the culture and confidence of the black and African races.

"It will also offer platform and intensify campaign for continue cultural exchange, understanding and unity amongst black and African countries and communities."

The director-general said that the centre was collaborating with UNESCO, Bank of Industry, Festac Town residents, Coca-cola among others, for the celebration.

According to him, activities lined up include: International Symposium, Colloquium, documentary on internalising the spirit of FESTAC "77, traditional wrestling competition and beauty pageant.

Others are: visit to tourist sites, cultural performances, exhibitions and African Food Fair by participating countries, states and organisations in Nigeria and Gala Night.

He said that Dr Ahmadu Ali, who was also the chairman of the festival in 1977, would also chairman the opening ceremony.

Anikwe said that former President Olusegun Obasanjo would be crowned "Ruby King of FESTAC" and "Patron of African Culture" for his contributions to the promotion and development of African culture and heritage.

"He will be crowned by the Ooni of Ife, His Royal Majesty, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, the Ojaja1," the CBAAC director-general said...

Anikwe said that Prof. Union Edebiri from the University of Benin in Edo, would present the keynote address at the event.


Nollywood is demonizing the Nigerian culture

Azuka Onwuka
Twitter: @BrandAzuka
Azuka Onwuka
~Punch Nigeria. Tuesday, October 31, 2017

The Nigerian film industry, popularly called Nollywood, has been a big source of pride since it officially took off in 1992 with the production of Living in Bondage. It has provided wealth, fame and prestige to Nigeria and thousands of Nigerians.

Ironically, right from Living in Bondage, producers of Nigerian movies have tended to cast the Nigerian traditional life as evil, as well as portraying Nigerians as people who make their money through the power of the occult and human sacrifice.

The reason Chinua Achebe wrote Things Fall Apart and Arrow of God was to present a balanced view of the African life before the advent of the European colonialists, thereby puncturing the negative portrayal of Africa by Europe as barbarians. Achebe did not seek to glorify Africa; rather, he chose to present a society that was not irrational or lawless, even though it had its flaws.

Sadly, many Nollywood writers and producers have adopted the neo-colonial mindset in their films which focus on Nigerian traditional ways of life. For the sake of specificity, I will focus on Igbo culture in this discourse.

Anytime a Nigerian film focuses on an Igbo village as well as the city, there are some constant narratives: 1. The village is the home of poverty, while the city is the place of wealth and good life. 2. The village is the home of witches and wizards while the city is the home of good men and women. 3. The traditional religion in the village is evil but the Christian religion in the city is the good that always overcomes the darkness in the village. 4. The village is a lawless society where one man can seize the property of anybody, especially widows, with nobody stopping him except by divine intervention, while the city is the land of order.

It has become a joke passed around that once you see an actor like Pete Edochie or Chinwetalu Agu in a film set in a traditional Igbo community, a widow will be dealt with mercilessly. Her goats and chickens will be confiscated in broad daylight. She will be barred from farming on her husband’s lands. Sometimes, the terror is a king in an Igbo community that acts as he wishes, confiscating people’s property as well as daughters and wives, arresting people and even killing some.

One is forced to ask: In which fairy Igbo village do these things happen? If they were old events, in which fairy Igbo society did these things happen?

In the distant Igbo past, a girl could be pushed into a marriage with threats by her parents, but no girl could be forced into a marriage if she chose not to marry a particular man. During the marriage introduction, a girl was expected to visit the bridegroom’s home and spend at least four market days with the mother of the bridegroom, without any sexual relations with the bridegroom. This was the opportunity for her to be studied by the prospective groom’s family and for her to study the man’s family. If she returned and said she did not like the family or the man, the marriage would not proceed.

Nollywood actor, Hanks Anuku exits Nigeria, turns Ghanaian

~Vanguard Nigeria. Sunday, March 5, 2017.

Actor Hanks Anuku turns Ghanaian with new name
Nana Kwame Fifi Kakra Anuku.
Nollywood Actor Hanks Anuku has become a Ghanaian having naturalised, relocated and changed his name to Nana Kwame Fifi Kakra Anuku.

The veteran actor Hanks Anuku has finally embraced Ghana as his adopted country, Ghana Link reports.

The actor who has relocated to Accra has now become a naturalized citizen of Ghana.

In a recent interview with Ghana Creative Arts, Hanks said he is going to stay in Ghana for the rest of his life in order to help Ghanaians.

On why he left Nigeria, the actor said the crisis in Nigeria forced him to leave the country and send his family to London while he hustle in Accra Ghana.

He added that his adopted Ghanaian name is Nana Kwame Fiifi Kakra Anuku.

TheCable€├»€² Verified account├»‚™ @thecableng tweeted Hanks Anuku saying that " God told me to leave Nigeria... I have found peace in Ghana ''.

BROWN CHYNA€ @Brown_Chynah also said Anuku comfirmed: " I'm Ghanaian Now!''

He said aActor Hanks Anuku Changes His Name To Nana Kwame Fifi Kakra

Sobontone€ @Shubomi_said "Anuku Ditches Nigeria & Becomes Ghanaian; Changes Name''.

Congolese musician, Koffi Olomide, deported from Kenya, arrested in Congo DR

Congolese musician, Koffi Olomide, has been arrested in the Democratic Repbulic of Congo.

The 60-year-old singer had been arrested and deported from Kenya on Friday after being caught on camera assaulting one of his dancers.

He had kicked out violently at a dancer in full view of two Kenyan policemen as he arrived at Nairobi's international airport, the AFP reported.

Following his deportation, Zambian authorities said on Sunday they had called off aplanned show by him.

Olomide was scheduled to perform at the annual agricultural trade show in Lusaka this week.

“Following the reported unfortunate incident in Kenya concerning Koffi Olomide, the Agricultural and Commercial Show Society of Zambia has decided to cancel his performance during this year's show,” Ben Shoko, head of the society said in a statement.

The incident sparked a storm of criticism after footage of the incident went viral on social media

Four years ago, Olomide, who has put out more than two dozen albums and won several industry awards, was given a three-month suspended jail term in Kinshasa for assaulting a producer.

Supreme sacrifice to watch the beautiful game

Writtenby Adokiye Amiesimaka - Nigeria. 

Adokiye Amiesimaka 
Football aka soccer is internationally acclaimed as the beautiful game, the king of sport, with the largest and widest fan base all over the world. In Nigeria, it is even credited with having the greatest unifying potential. Since it became an international sport over a hundred years ago more passionate fans have been attracted to football stadiums to savour the game’s delightful experience on a weekly basis than to any other sport event. Tragically, there have been too many ‘spectator incidents’ from every part of the world that have been the antithesis of joy.

While football’s most famous quote attributed to Bill Shankly (Liverpool FC Manager, 1959-1974) – “Football is not a matter of life and death … it’s much more important than that” may have been edited down and interpreted out of context, the fact remains that no other sport has had more venue tragedies than football.

Over the years, several factors like hooliganism, poor stadium construction, inefficient entry and exit protocol, unprofessional law enforcement response, etc. have been responsible for turning many stadiums into arenas of death and destruction.
Chris Valentine has done well to document many of such unpleasant events, but let me highlight the most devastating ones among them.

At the National Stadium, Katmandu, Nepal, on March 12, 1988, at least 93 people were killed and 100 more were injured when fans attempted to flee from a hailstorm inside the stadium. Ice pellets rained down on the 30,000 fans watching a match between Nepalese and Bangladeshi teams. Witnesses said screaming spectators rushed to the stadium’s eight exits but found only one open. Police and hospital sources in the city confirmed more than 70 people, including two police officers, were trampled to death or suffocated. Government television reported 73 persons were killed, and witnesses said 20 other bodies were later retrieved by relatives.

Holy Toasting...!

From  Lewis Okomayin - Nigeria
Boy: do you have a boyfriend?
Girl: No. I don’t want a boyfriend.
Boy: Genesis 2:18 “The Lord God said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him’.”
Girl: But I don’t love you.
Boy: 1 John 4:8 "Whoever does not love, does not know God, because God is love.”
Girl: So how do I discern that your words are true?
Boy: Matthew 12:34b “For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of."
Girl: But how can I be sure that you are faithful and honest?
Boy: Mark 13:31 “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away."
Girl: But why me? There are so many girls out there.
Boy: Proverbs 31:29 “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all!”
Girl: But what do you see in me, that makes you love me?
Boy: Song of Songs 4:7 " You are altogether beautiful, my darling; there is no flaw in you."
Girl: But really, I’m not that beautiful … you’re exaggerating.
Boy: Proverbs 31:30 “Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.”

Why I'll sue my mother

Twitter @ okeyndibe
MY mother has damaged my pristine image, and I am shopping for a lawyer to sue her. So, dear reader: if you happen to know a ruthless, take-no-prisoner's lawyer, please, please send me her or his contact details.

In case you don't get it, let me stress the kind of lawyer I wish to hire. I want a lawyer with a long record of suing defamers for the last cent, penny or kobo they have to their name. My dream lawyer would accept no pleas. She or he would disdain half measures. In short, I desire a lawyerly equivalent of Mike Tyson in his prime. No, don't send me any lawyer who floats like a butterfly. I'm not looking for a skelewu dancer!

I crave an expert at delivering devastating legal upper cuts, a knockout specialist who never pauses or stops until the enemy is fully, totally vanquished.
So why am I looking for such a lawyer, you ask?
I thought I told you already. Because I want to-I must-sue my mother.
What exactly am I suing her for?

You've not been paying attention, or you'd remember I already disclosed the rea- son. Okay, again: my mother defamed me, that's why.
Is it possible to talk it over, to persuade me not to sue her?
The answer is no. Nothing will-and no earthly force can-stop me from pursuing the said lawsuit. Let all the bishops in the world compose an episcopal epistle garnished with a hundred and forty-four citations from the Holy Writ, I won't be deterred in the least. If all the traditional rulers in Igboland (and the accompanying self-crowned monarchs in the diaspora) should expound on the cultural plague that awaits the son who drags his own mother to court, I will not listen.

Hear me, reader: This matter is way, way beyond the intervention of peacemakers. It's definitely bound for the courts!
All my uncles and aunts, siblings and cousins may waste their breath, but my ears are plugged to their pleas. And to my friends, I have only this to say on the issue: Keep your counsel to yourself. I won't listen.

The renaissance of Nigerian music

Written by Jide Ojo - Nigeria
Follow Jide Ojo on twitter @jideojong

"One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain" -Bob Marley
I love good music. If there is one thing I am addicted to, it is soulful, joyful noises. I listen to all genres of music from the traditional to the contemporary. I have a stockpile of downloaded music on my phones and personal computers. I have also invested a small fortune buying musical cassettes and compact discs. They range from indigenous juju, fuji, apala, Afro-beat, highlife, and sakara to the contemporary hip-hop, pop, jazz, and rap. I am also in love with country music and gospel. As rightly observed by Taylor Swift, "People haven't always been there for me but music always has." What do I love in music? I love the inspiration, the idioms, the creativity, the originality and the relaxation that good music offers.

Among my Nigerian music icons are Sir Victor Abimbola Olaiya, I.K. Dairo, Adeolu Akinsanya (Baba Eto), Tunji Oyelana, Chief Commander Ebenezer Obey, King Sunny Ade, Lijadu Sisters, Sir Victor Uwaifo, Sikiru Ayinde Barrister, Chief Stephen Osita Osadebe of the Osondi Owendi fame, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, Christy Essien-Igbokwe, Sunny Okosun, Onyeka Onwenu, Oliver De Coque, Lara George and a host of other artistes too numerous to mention.

The evolution of Nigerian music is phenomenal. There was a time highlife ruled the Nigerian music world. Then came juju, fuji and Afro-beat popularised by Fela in the sixties. Thereafter came the Nigerian brand of hip-hop in the early eighties. I remember the likes of Mike Okri, Felix Lebarty, Danny Wilson, Blackky, Chris Okotie, Dizzy K. Falola and Alex Zitto. On the reggae side, we had the Mandators, Oritz Wiliki, Majek Fashek, Ras Kimono and Evi Edna Ogholi. The evolution gave way to revolution in the 90s with the emergence of new kids on the block like The Remedies, Plantashun Boyz, Daddy Showkey, Papa Fryo and Daddy Fresh. There was also Junior and Pretty, Maintain group and the Styl-Plus group. The split of The Remedies and Plantashun Boyz gave rise to star artistes like Tuface Idibia, Tony Tetuila and Eedris AbdulKarim.
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