Friday, 30 July 2010
I have not met Jimmy Jatt physically, but he's always been in my imagination since the early 90's. I don't know if Literary Days are still held in Nigeria's Secondary Schools, but back in the 90's, this special day was foremost on the events calendar of our Grammar, Comprehensive, High Schools and Federal Government Colleges. Though the day was called Literary and Debating Day, it was mostly characterised by dancing, choreography and miming of popular artists and their music. The DJ was the most important person of the day and not the guests on the high table who were usually teachers in the schools hosting the event. The organisers in my school, Ijebu-Ode Grammar School [ J.O.G.S ], were fond of paying Jimmy Jatt to perform at the event. Jimmy would then send one of his boys to deejay for him because of other engagements he had. I never saw this amazing DJ with my eyes, but I witnessed what he could do on the Wheels of Steel through his proxies.
Jimmy Amu was born and raised up in Lagos Island, an old section of Lagos State, Nigeria's former capital. He grew up with music all around him and he developed a deep interest in this genre of the arts. He started listening to a lot of Rap and Hip-Hop albums from the late 70's. It was not long before he started to collect albums of American acts like LL Cool Jay, Kurtis Blow, African Bambaata, NWA, etc. Jimmy Amu's [ JATT is an acronym from the initials of his brothers who encouraged him and gave him a hand up in his early days as a Disc Jockey ] rise as a phenomenal party DJ started when he opened shop on Odo Street in Surulere. Odo Street was located strategically in the sense that it was close to Ojuelebga, a very busy and commercial part of Surulere. This made Jimmy's Studio very accessible to budding Hip-Hop artists in the country. He started organising talent shows in his studios and ended up discovering many talented rappers in the process. He networked with Radio Stations and helped his discoveries get their unreleased songs on air.
There are a few Hip-Hop artists in Nigeria today that do not owe their breakthrough to Jimmy Jatt. He has been in the jockeying game for so long that he's become the Don King of Nigerian Entertainment. Long before we started having modern music labels like Kennis Music, Storm Records, Dove Records and the rest of them, Jimmy Jatt had been producing and promoting budding artists in his unique way. This is what has made him popular. Hip-Hop hopefuls identify with him and help spread the word about his skills. He also helped to nurture the careers of spin doctors like DJ Waxy, DJ Funky J and Mix Master Tee among others. Jimmy's Road Block Street Carnival brought famous artists like Ruff, Rugged and Raw, Daddy Showkey, Daddy Fresh, Junior and Pretty and Aladin [ He was known as Chuck Da Bone before his name change ] to our attention. Jatt has also performed at many concerts in Nigeria and internationally. He has made a Disc Jockeying a noble profession in Nigeria. Jimmy can be referred to as a legend.
If you've listened to the song 'Stylee', a collaboration between Jimmy Jatt, Tuface Idibia, Mode 9 and Elajoe, you'll understand what I've been saying all along about this amazing DJ. The song is out of this world and brought together Nigeria's Hip-Hop dons on a track. 'Stylee' the lead single of his career defining mix-tape 'Definition' was named as the 'Best Collabo' at the 2008 Hip-Hop World Awards and the song's video also won Best Music Video at the same event. Jimmy has two daughters and a beautiful wife. He survived a serious car crash on the morning of Saturday March 15, 2008. His GMC SUV ( Which was purchased from the US in 2005 ) was a total write off after the accident. We thank God that Jimmy Jatt is still with us today. He's currently working on a project called 'Battle Field'in an attempt to discover new DJ's. The project has rolled out and winners will be awarded sums of money and other incentives. His TV programme 'Jimmy's Jump Off' is presently being aired on local and international stations. Jimmy Amu is a man of many firsts and RV is proud of this great Nigerian. Keep the flag flying, mate.
Where To Find Jimmy Jatt Online: www.djjimmyjatt.net, twitter.com/jimmyjatt
Contact us: email@example.com
Thursday, 29 July 2010
British-Nigerian singer, Sadu Adu, will once again keep us entranced with her amazing voice when she graces the stage alongside Jay-Z and Alicia Keys during a charity event on September 30. The seventh annual Black Ball will be held at the New York Hammerstein Ballroom and it is being organized by Keys' Keep A Child Alive Organization . Alicia Keys, who is expecting her first child with Producer-Rapper, Swizz Beatz is delighted that Sade and Jay-Z have agreed to be part of the event. According to Keys-
'Sade and Jay-Z are both icons and both major influences of mine. I'm overwhelmed by their generosity in helping us continue the tradition of making the Black Ball the best fundraiser in NYC.'
The UK version of the Black Ball was held in London this past May with Kasabian and Bryan Ferry performing as guest artists. The Keep A Child Alive Organization assists families struggling with HIV/AIDS throughout India and Africa and has generated more than $10 million since 2004. The KCA has assisted more than 250,000 people since it was co-founded by Keys in 2003. The organization also gives financial grants to Clinical centres and Orphan Care in countries like Uganda and Rwanda. Last year's Black Ball in New York which was also held at the Hammerstein Ballroom raised more than $2 million with a range of celebrities like Nick Cannon, Mary J.Blige, David Bowie, Halle Berry et al supporting the cause.
Sources: mtv.com, RV.
Tuesday, 27 July 2010
We've just come across vital information that Nel Ust Wyclef Jean, popularly known as Wyclef Jean, is considering running for the Presidency of Haiti. Haiti's presidential election will hold in November as the much maligned outgoing government of President Rene Preval cannot seek re-election. In a statement sent to the mainstream media yesterday, the family of the ex-Fugees star confirmed for the first time that he was toying with the idea of running for Haiti's top job. According to Wyclef's family-
' Wyclef's commitment to his homeland and its youth is boundless, and he will remain its greatest supporter regardless of whether he is part of the government moving forward. At this time, Wyclef Jean has not announced his intent to run for Haitian president. If and when a decision is made, the media will be alerted immediately.' the statement read.
Our credible sources say that paperwork for Wyclef's candidacy at the November elections has already been completed and submitted. With the statement released by the Jean family, rumours of Clef contesting for the Haitian Presidency has been confirmed. The rumours had increased after the January 12 earthquake that took the lives of 300,000 Haitians and rendered 1.5 million people in the country homeless. Wyclef, who was born in Haiti but raised in New York, USA, is very popular in his country of birth where half of the citizens are under 21 years of age. His Yele Haiti Foundation which was set up in 2005 provides scholarships and relief materials to victims of natural disasters. Clef has also served as a roving ambassador with the current Haitian administration.
Though he has good intentions and a desire to bring real development to the devastated land mass of Haiti with his Presidential ambition, there are some hurdles that Wyclef has to surmount. He has to prove that he has lived in Haiti for five consecutive years and that he has property in the country. Wyclef is required to hold Haitian citizenship only. This is where the problem arises. Clef has an American Passport by naturalization. His political opponents in Haiti might use his American citizenship against him. Political analysts are also wondering if the Hip-Hop artist and philanthropist can survive in the dangerous waters of Haitian politics. There are people who also believe that running a country is different from recording songs and performing at concerts. What cannot be waved aside is Wyclef's cult status in Haiti. Wyclef is a former member of The Fugees, a hip-hop unit whose second album, 'The Score' , sold more than 18 million copies and won a Grammy in 1996.
Sources: uk.news.yahoo.com, guardian.co.uk, Wikipedia, RV.
Monday, 26 July 2010
Hi, thanks for taking the time to view this blog. You're one of those that have ensured that traffic to this site has increased. I want to let you and other fans of this blog know that I put in a lot of effort in updating the site. Getting and processing information online takes a lot of time. Getting a post researched and uploaded can take up to two hours. However, I promise you an exciting experience anytime you visit this blog. As you can see, a lot of features are being added to my page consistently. I will place a chat room on the blog very soon. I'm also going to register on Twitter so that I can give you tips, news, events etc as they happen.
I want REDMAN'S VIBEWORLD to be interactive. Therefore, I'll be glad if you can comment on the stories, articles and videos that we post. Your comments will give us the motivation to work harder and sustain the growth of this Media Product. We also want to know what you think about RV and the kind of things you want us to write about. You'll need a GMAIL address to comment on this blog. We'll also be happy if you tell your friends, family and loved ones about RV. Thanks once more for dropping by. Cheers.
K'naan, the Somalian-Canadian Hip-Hop artiste cum singer, has the world at his feet at the moment. Apart from holding us captive with his well produced song 'Wavin Flag' and appearing on many television shows recently, Keinan Abdi Warsame has won the hearts of Producers in India's biggest entertainment industry, Bollywood. Music composers, Vishal and Shekhar have signed the rapper and songwriter and have already started working with him on some projects. Vishal had travelled to London to discuss another project with a colleague when he discovered that he was sitting on the same table with K'naan's team. K'naan's Manager, Sol Guy, came up with the idea of a K'naan-vishal/shekhar collaboration and the respected Indian Producer agreed on the spot.
Apart from the famous Indian composers mentioned above, K'naan also met with Bollywood actor, Imran Khan. Khan was in the Republic of South Africa for the World Cup finals and was staying in the same hotel with K'naan who emigrated to Canada at age 13. The singer had performed some of his songs including 'Wavin Flag' for a select audience just before the Germany-Uruguay third place match was played. Imran watched K'naan perform and he has this to say- 'I did not know who he was. I had only heard that 'Wavin Flag' was his track. I was mesmerised. As he is a Somalian, his music has that African beat to it'. Imran Khan who believes K'naan's coming to Bollywood is great endorses Coca Cola, the same soft drink which used the Somalian-Canadian's song for its World Cup campaign. K'naan is currently performing at different music festivals in Canada. Some of his songs receiving heavy patronage on YOUTUBE include 'Fatima', 'Take a Minute' and 'I Come Prepared'.
Where To find K'naan online: www.knaanmusic.ning.com, www.myspace.com/knaanmusic
Sources: movies.indiainfo.com, planetradiocity.com
Sunday, 25 July 2010
I came back from West London to my crib about an hour ago. As I was browsing in order to update this blog with current events in the Music Kingdom, I stumbled upon a link. It was about Nneka Egbuna's remix of her famous song, 'Heartbeat' with Nas. After listening to this joint, I went to Youtube and found this video. Though it is a slide show, it is lovely watching it. Here is the link I found on the web-
You can copy and paste the link above to listen to the song. Nneka Egbuna is holding the world spellbound at the moment. Enjoy this video. Cheers.
Friday, 23 July 2010
Hip-Soul artist, Nneka Egbuna, has been nominated in two categories for the this year's Nigerian Entertainment Awards. She was selected as a nominee in the 'Indigenous Artist of The Year' and 'Best Soul/Neo Soul Act of the Year' Categories. The Awards ceremony will take place on the 18th of September 2010 at the BMCC Tribeca Performing Art Centre, New York, USA. Kick off time is 5:30pm EST. Nneka is a Nigerian-German musician who has been creating a lot of stir in music circles since she debuted in 2005. Her first album, 'Victim of Truth' ( Released in the UK in 2007 ) was praised as a great effort by the British Media. She has opened for Lauryn Hill and Lenny Kravitz at concerts and she's currently on tour in the United States. Her Distant Relatives tour with Damian Marley and Nas will continue at Newport,Rhode Island, on the 31st of July 2010.
The Nigerian Entertainment Awards is an annual event that recognises the contributions of Nigerians to the Entertainment industry across the world. The anchor for this year's event is Omawunmi. If you are a fan of Nneka Egbuna, you can vote for her through the link below:
Source: nnekaworld.com, RV.
My father must have been a passionate music lover when he was young. I've come to this conclusion because of the number of records he owns and how he keeps them stacked in the Sanyo Stereo Unit in the sitting room. While going through this stack of records in the late 90's, I came across an album of the Lijadu Sisters. The album was still in a good condition and had as its title 'Sunshine'. The sisters on the album's sleeve were identical in their looks and they were dressed in 70's clothing. I noticed that one of the tracks was titled 'Reincarnation'. I tried to listen to the album back then but other activities made me forget about the Lijadu Sisters until last year. I stumbled upon their music on YOUTUBE, and my further research has shown that the music of Taiwo and Kehinde Lijadu is currently in high demand.
The Lijadu Sisters grew up in Ibadan and were inspired by the music of Aretha Franklin, Victor Olaiya and Miriam Makeba. I could not garner enough information about their teenage years, but they released their first album 'Iya Mi Jowo' ( Mother,Please ] in 1969 on the Decca Records Label. Their music was a mix of Jazz, Afro-beat ( Taking into consideration that they began performing in an era that had Joni Haastrup, Akanka Isidore and Fela Kuti & Koola Lobitos as their contemporaries ) reggae and waka. The sisters worked with the late Biddy Wright [ Biddy was the consumate musician and producer behind the group, Wura Fadaka ] on their third album 'Danger'(1976). This album had tracks like 'Life's Gone Down Low' and 'Amebo'. Another album of their's was 'Sunshine'(1978). This was the album I talked about at the beginning of this piece. A favourite song of mine 'Reincarnation' is on this album. You need to listen to this track. It is well produced and the beat is great. 'Double Trouble'(1984) seems to be the last album the sisters released before they moved to the United States.
Have you taken the time to listen to 'Orere Elejigbo'? This track really made me appreciate the Lijadu Sisters. The lyrics were well composed and the sisters were strong in the vocals. I'm not surprised that they jammed with Ginger Baker, Twins Seven Seven and Orlando Julius Ekemode. Taiwo and Kehinde Lijadu were also in the video of Orlando Julius Ekemode's amazing song 'Adara'. The were the ones in the white clothing and beads. Reliable sources also say the twins had a show on NTA in the late 80's which was known as 'The Lijadu Sisters Show'. I was still very young when the sisters were reigning but their music sounds great today. They have four children between them and it is said that their offspring did not know which of the women was their mother. They also wore each other's clothes. This shows the deep bond between the sisters. The sisters are currently living in New York City, USA. RV does not know if they are still performing gigs or are still in the music business. The sisters have not granted interviews to any Newspaper or Magazine since they left for the States. They have a website which seems to be under construction. There is no central place on the web where their CD's can be bought and their Facebook Page is not interactive. The sisters should realize that they have a lot of fans who want to hear from them and possibly see them at a concert in the near future.
I decided to write this feature on the Lijadu Sisters because we often tend to forget that some people set the pace for artists of today. Before the coming of Yinka Davies,TY Bello, Lara George, Asa, Nneka Egbuna and Ayo, we had the Lijadu Sisters, Theodora Ifudu, Christy Essien Igbokwe and Onyeka Onwenu. I feel it is time our current artists should start drawing ideas from the music of legendary performers like the Lijadu Sisters. I'm not talking about sampling alone here but also the need to bring our local instruments into mainstream Nigerian R&B and Hip-Hop. Why don't you listen to Nigerian Old School Sounds today? Hmn.
Sources: Google.com, Combandrazor.blogspot.com, RV.
Tuesday, 20 July 2010
'Though Wale hasn't had a chance to fully prove his mettle, he's shown flashes of brilliance on his mixtapes and guest verses. 2008's 'A Mixtape About Nothing' was more compelling than most people's albums, and he almost stole the show from veteran Black Thought on 'Rising Up'. Still, I'm not drunk enough on the Wale Buzz to crown him the 'next great' anything. I'm witholding my judgement until we see how much of his mixtape skills and guest features translate to an album worth shelling 15 bucks in these hard times for.'
- Henry Adaso ( Henry's Rap and Hip-Hop Blog )
This comment about Wale was made before the release of his debut album 'Attention Deficit' ( Allido Records/Interscope ) in November 2009. Hopefully, Henry Adaso will swallow his views about this talented dude with some humility. What I particularly like about Olubowale Victor Akintimehin [ Folarin ] is that he has not denied his Nigerian background. He still has the a bit of the Yoruba accent when he speaks. In the video of his lovely track 'Diary', the names of the ladies are distinctly Nigerian. Do you remember Akinyele? He was that rapper that we all thought was Nigerian in the 90's. I loved his song 'Da Bomb' but he's since fizzled out. Wale is a breath of fresh air and this guy will be around for a long time.
Wale was born in 1984 to Nigerian immigrant parents in Washington DC [ Nonchalant's Crib ] and he's an American Rapper cum Producer. After attending loads of High Schools, he finally graduated from Quince Orchard High in 2001. A keen footballer, Wale dropped out of Bowie State University in 2004 to pursue his music career. He has released 5 Mixtapes and his latest Mixtape 'More About Nothing' will be dropping on August 3, 2010. Making a living with our natural gifts is not an easy task, but Wale is holding his own in the competitive Hip-Hop Industry. He got his break with the help of WKYS-FM's DJ Alizay who played his songs on his show which was heard in DC. Soon, his single called 'Rhyme of The Century' began getting heavy radio airplay and he got featured in the June 2005 'Unsigned Hype' section of Source Magazine. Wale, who supports the Washington Wizards, has taken his career to greater heights since then.
I don't want to dwell much on Wale's story to fame. I've spent enough time listening to his music online and I'm really impressed with his delivery. He has a lot of tracks on Youtube and I feel you should hear him out and make up up your mind about his talent. I love his combo 'Chillin' with Lady Gaga. Another favourite track of mine is 'Roof'. Wale's flow on this track reminds me of the early material of Nas. I can listen to 'Roof' all day. Other good tracks include 'Pretty Girls', 'Nike Boots' and 'Wale Dance'. Wale's profile is rising by the day and if he does his homework properly, his sophomore album should make the world acknowledge him as a rapper to be reckoned with. I would also love to see Wale working with Nigerian Rappers like Mode 9, M.I, Weird MC and Eldee. This will help him break into the Nigerian Music Market. The future is very bright for Wale and with many people asking for the return of real hip-hop, he is sure to lead the new movement of conscious Hip-Hop artists.
Where To Find Wale Online: www.myspace.com/wale, http://walemusic.ning.com
We love to bring you videos that are amazing and at the same time reflecting some Nigerianess. I came across a short article on Wale in XXL Worldwide Magazine in 2008. I did not think much of him back then and I felt he was one of the Nigerian hustlers trying to make it in the States. I deserve a beating for following that line of thought. Wale was born in Washington DC, USA to Nigerian Immigrant Parents in 1984. He's a Rapper and Producer with lyrical creativity. His debut album, 'Attention Deficit' ( Allido Records/Interscope ) was released in November 2009. I love this video of his song 'Diary'. Wale is really gifted and his music makes sense. To me, he has the intelligence of Nas and the fearsome delivery of Krs One. He is an artiste to watch out for. His story is also on this page. Enjoy!!
Monday, 19 July 2010
I feel GT The Guitarman has a lot to offer us. I also believe he needs to leave Storm Records and team up with a Record Label that can manage him properly. I'm not saying Obi Asika [ Storm Records CEO ] is incompetent when it comes to artist management, but GT is a gifted musician that needs special handling. Gbemiro Tokunbo Akingbogun [ He is the cousin of my good friend, Siji Akingbogun ] has not achieved much as an artist since he joined Storm Records in July 2005. Though he has built up a fan base that is really passionate about his music, Storm Records has not been able to capitalize successfully on the momentum built by the Ogun State native. As I write this piece, GT The Guitarman does not have a website of his own. Nigerian artistes need to move beyond being featured on the websites of their Record Labels or having Myspace Pages.
It took Storm Records more than three years to release GT's first album, 'The Truth'. Sometimes, I feel Obi Asika's label cares more about the Hip-Hop and Rap Artists ( who obviously have more commercial appeal and would bring in the bucks ) it manages than deep thinking guys like Gbemiro Akingbogun. I doubt if Asa and Nneka Egbuna would have blown up big time if they were managed by Nigerian Record Labels. Yet GT The Guitarman is in the same class with the two gifted ladies I've mentioned. It is just that he has not been able to record in the western world and perform at concerts in Europe and the United States. This is the same guy that appeared in Akon's 'Mama Africa' video which was shot in Ghana. GT has also performed at a lot of shows including Club Nru in South Africa. He has warmed his way into our hearts with his strong vocal skills and his cute look.
From all indications, it seems GT will leave Storm Records soon. The rumours about his impending severing of ties with Storm Records have been in circulation for some weeks now. Gbemiro himself has admitted that he won't be with Obi Asika's outfit forever. Though Mr Asika insists GT is still with Storm Records, Just like Nas, it ain't hard to tell that GT wants to take his career to the next level. What he needs is an International Music Label that will expose him to the world. He also needs to start playing at music festivals [ And there are loads of them ] in Europe and North America. Besides, GT The Guitar Man needs to write and record new songs that have more depth with universal appeal. This does not mean he has to change his style or sell out to the Commercial Music Labels. Gbemiro needs to start collaborating with western artists. To do this, he has to live in Europe or the States for a while.
GT was born in London in London in 1984 and he grew up in Nigeria. His childhood years were rough with his mother being the sole provider for him and his siblings. He began playing the guitar in 2003 and performed in churches with different groups. He got his breakthrough in 2005 when he was approached by Omobaba, a comedian, who liked his music. Omobaba mentored him and took him to a lot of shows before taking him to Dare Art Alade. Dare was impressed after listening to Gbemiro's material and quickly introduced the singer to Obi Asika who signed him immediately after a brief audition. GT has an album in the market titled 'The Truth'. You need to listen to tracks like 'Hustle' [ Bobby Boulders did a good job on the song's video ], 'Osima Gbomi' [ You'll Still Hear Me ], 'Truly' and other memorable songs. GT was truly amazing on the album. His gifts must not be allowed to waste. He needs to move on to avoid being forgotten in the scheme of things.
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Saturday, 17 July 2010
A film that is based on the life and times of the late but hugely talented Nigerian rapper, Olaitan Olaonipekun [ A.K.A DAGRIN ], will soon hit the screens. Titled 'Ghetto Dreams', the film which will be directed by Lancelot Imasuen [ Imasuen is the guy behind the Issakaba movies which chronicled the activities of the Bakassi Boys in Eastern Nigeria ] is the story of the growing years of Dagrin, his struggles, rise to fame and his untimely death. The Film will be bankrolled by Stingomania Entertainment. RV has also gathered that a Foundation has been set up in memory of the late rapper. The Foundation, known as The Dagrin Memorial Project, was created to ensure that the family Dagrin left behind is taken care of and that his death is made more bearable for his parents and siblings. The Project will also provide a lasting structure and means to encourage budding entertainment stars.
Dagrin died on Thursday, 22nd April, 2010 after sustaining deep injuries in a car crash. He grew up in the Meiran/Alagbado area of Lagos State, Nigeria. Dagrin's father had three wives and the rapper was the 4th child out of 8 children. His family is originally from Owu in Ogun State. Dagrin's musical talent was noticed while he was a member of the choir at the Redeemed Christian Church of God [ RCCG ] Living God Parish, Meiran, where he used to sing and rap. His death caused a huge uproar in Nigeria and among Nigerians in Europe and America. Some of his songs like 'Ghetto Dreams', 'Pon Pon Pon' and 'Kondo' have become anthems among his fans. He has been called Nigeria's 2Pac due to their similar background, raw lyrics and thug image. Rest in Peace, Dagrin.
Sources: www.vanguardngr.com, RV.
The news about the possible release of a new Lauryn Hill album put a smile on my face. Different thoughts danced in my head and I started to think of what her new material would sound like. Would she retain her old musical style that was sweet like chocolate but also admonishing us to take a careful look at our lives, or would she come up with fresh music and infuse other genres into her sound? I've not received answers to my questions, but what I'm sure of is that L.Boogie is not going to pander to what the executives running her record label want. She will remain true to herself and her fans as usual.
Lauryn Hill told USA Today: 'There were a number of different reasons why I left, but partly, the support system that I needed was not necessarily in place. There were things about myself, personal-growth things, which I had to go through in order to feel like it was worth it. As musicians and artists, it's important we have an environment and I guess when I say environment, I really mean the music industry that really nurtures these gifts.' Lauryn has not been around for about 11 years. She has spent her time loving her husband, Rohan Marley [ Robert Nesta Marley's son ], taking care of their five children and recording new songs. After thrilling us with her critically acclaimed solo album 'The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill' ( Columbia/Ruffhouse 1998 ), Lauryn dropped another album titled 'MTV Unplugged No 2.0' in 2001. This album contained songs she performed at that year's MTV Unplugged Special. Though the album was panned by a good number of music critics and not seen as a good follow up to 'The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill' by a section of her fans, it went platinum four weeks after release.
Lauryn's staying power remains one of her enduring qualities. I find it amazing that her song 'Mystery of Iniquity' got nominated for a Grammy Award though it was not promoted or played on the radio. While she was away, a lot of blogs and websites were dedicated to her with many of her fans practically asking her to get back into the studios. I missed Lauryn Hill terribly during her self imposed exile from music. I'm playing her debut CD as I write this piece. 'The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill' had the highest first week sales of any album by a female artist in History ( 423,000 copies sold in first week after release ). The album also topped the Billboard 200 albums chart for 4 weeks with Lauryn earning $25 Million from record sales and touring between 1998 and 1999. 'The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill' received 10 Grammy nominations with Lauryn taking home 5 Grammy Awards including Album of the year [ 1998 ].
Lauryn Noel Hill, who's written and produced hit songs for Aretha Franklin and Cece Winans, was born in 1975 to Valerie Hill and Mal Hill in South Orange, New Jersey. She displayed her artistic abilities to the world when at age 13, she appeared on 'Amateur Night' on Showtime at the Apollo. Though she lost the competition, Lauryn's vision was strong. While in High School, She formed The Fugees with Wyclef Jean and his cousin Prakazrel Michel. The group's album 'The Score' won two Grammy Awards for Best Rap Album and Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group. Fugees became the largest selling rap group of all time and the members dispersed to work on individual projects later on. Though Wyclef Jean has been the most consistent Fugee in terms of musical output, Lauryn Hill has remained larger than life and popular than Clef and Praz.
Though I'm excited with the prospects of Lauryn's return to the music scene, I've got my doubts about the news. RV has gathered that the 35 year old gave a brilliant performance at the Harmony Festival in Santa Rosa, California, early this month. We've also been told that Lauryn Plans to perform at the Rock The Bells Festival series in August. However, we've always been told of Lauryn's comeback for many years only to be disappointed. What about the concerts she bungled at the last minute and her clash with officials of the Roman Catholic Church in 2003? Lauryn had denounced the church due to molestations of boys by Catholic priests in the USA during a concert at the Vatican. The Catholic League responded by saying she was 'Pathologically Miserable' and that her career was declining. She has also failed to calm down and ensure a Fugees Reunion. And what about the average performances she gave out at concerts in recent years? I'm only holding on to what she told Npr.Com-
' It is just time. I'm starting to get excited again'. Lets hope she sticks to her words this time around. Welcome back, L Boogie.
Sources: timeslive.co.za, mtv.com, Wikipedia, tv.com, RV.
Wednesday, 14 July 2010
The organisers of the Black Entertainment Television Awards ( BET Awards ) need to answer this question: Is the event meant to honour Black musicians that are based in or have origins in the Western World alone? I must admit that I started following the BET Awards from 2009. What irks me is the way African artistes were treated at this year's ceremony. We saw American Artistes like Chris Brown, Kanye West, Alicia Keys, T.I, Drake, Eminem etc perform but not one single African Artiste was on stage that night. Are Africans not black too? Another grudge I have against BET is the Award that was given to Dizzee Rascal as the Best International Act. The nominated musicians for this Awards Category were- Kojo Antwi [ Ghana ], Chipmunk [ UK ], Dizzee Rascal [ UK ], Estelle [ UK ], Hip-Hop Pantsula [ South Africa ], M.I [ Nigeria ], P-Square [ Nigeria ], K'NAAN [ Somalia ] Sade [ UK ] and Corrine Bailey Rae [ UK ].
With the rapid development of African music in recent years, BET should have encouraged artists from our continent by giving the Best International Act award to one of the African nominees. Personally, I believe K'naan should have won the award. His music is mind blowing and 2010 is his year. How can an artiste whose song 'Waving Flag' has become a global anthem be relegated to the background at the awards? K'naan was not even allowed to display his skills to the world through a performance. And how is Dizzee Rascal better than Sade Adu? Sade is a legend in her own right and should have been given better recognition at the event. There has been a lot of talk in the States about the Nigerian Hip-Hop industry [ Rest In Peace, Da Grin ] and Nigerian musicians have been performing at Music festivals in America for ages. At least P-Square or M.I should have been allowed to perform at the main event anchored by Queen Latifah. It would have encouraged upcoming acts in Africa to take their careers seriously.
BET has to realise that Africa is the source of black music and entertainment. The organisers of the BET Awards are descendants of slaves who were shipped to America. These slaves did not forget their music forms and as time went on they started singing Negro spirituals. Then came Jazz, soul, blues, Hip-Hop and Rap. African music has come of age and the internet has made it easy to share music files and watch music videos anywhere you are in the world. BET has to make amends at next year's event. If African musicians can be honoured at the Grammy Awards, I wonder why Africa is being ignored at the BET Awards. K'naan has proved that it is possible to blend African sounds with western instrumentation and still come out with something great. I hope my rant will get to the BET Awards organisers. RV says things as they are.
Ibinabo Fiberesima is a Nigerian actress, ex-beauty queen and Events Manager. She is from Rivers State, Nigeria, and she is the child of Dr J.B Fiberesima and an Irish woman. Ibinabo attended the Y.M.C.A Play Centre, Port Hacourt and had her secondary education at the Federal Government Girls College [ F.G.G.C ], New Bussa, Niger State, Nigeria. She graduated from the University of Ibadan with B.A Degree in English Language and Literature. She got into entertainment after winning the Miss Wonderland Beauty Pageant in 1997. She was the First Runner up at the Miss Nigeria 1991 beauty contest. Due to her love for music and the arts, Ibinabo went into Night Club Management in the 90's and she ran her club, Pyramid and Karaoke, [ A gift from a lover who was besotted with her ] for six years.
As the years rolled on, Ibinabo also started acting. I hope you've not forgotten her solid performance in 'Most Wanted' ( Nigeria's version of 'Set It Off'. An American movie featuring Queen Latifah in a Gangster role ). Besides acting in other movies, She has also produced a movie 'A Night In The Phillipines'. She also contributed positively to the Nigerian Music Industry by appearing in Music videos especially those of Edward Inyang, whose stage name is Blackky. Ibinabo is the National Director for Nigeria to the Miss Earth Beauty Pageant and Miss International Beauty Pageant [ RV is not sure if the named Paegants are still being organised these days ]. She has three children [ The father of the last child is Fred Amata, a noted Nigerian actor and Movie Producer ]. Ibinabo has been in the spotlight in recent years after accidentally killing Dr Suraj Giwa in a car crash in 2005. She has been to court several times and has been handed a jail sentence. However, she has been able to avoid going to jail. It is not clear when her court battles with the Giwa family will end.
We love doing things differently on this blog. Ibinabo Fiberesima is one of the most beautiful women in Nigeria. She continues to blossom through the years and age has not been able to stop her shinning. We recognise Ibinabo because she has contributed to the growth of the music industry in Nigeria. It should be noted that she was once the owner of a Night Club, Pyramid & Karaoke [ Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria ] which she ran for about 6 years in the 90's. We all know music is a vital part of Night Clubbing, and I'm sure some artistes must have launched their careers at Ibinabo's Club.
Ibinabo was also in the music videos of Edward Inyang [ Popularly known as Blackky ] and she really added colour to those videos. Her sexy looks in Blackky's 'Bang Belly'( Hmn, Blackky is a lucky man sha. Ibinabo kissed him in the video as he lay beside the Swimming Pool!! ) and her stunning figure in the red dress she wore for the video of another Blackky song 'Divorce' shows her support for Nigerian music. RV believes in Ibinabo Fiberesima and we are behind her as she comes out of the storms of life blowing hard around her. You're a queen, my dear.
Monday, 12 July 2010
Controversial Nigerian Rapper, Eedris Abdulkareem, has swallowed his pride by apologising to Nigeria Breweries Plc on Sunday during the album launch of a musical group known as The Pulse. The event was held at the La Cachette Restaurant in Lagos, Nigeria and Eedris used the opportunity to ask Nigeria Breweries officials at the event for forgiveness over his behaviour in 2004 which resulted in the withdrawal of American Hip-hop Star Artiste, 50 Cents, from a scheduled concert in Nigeria. Eedris had embarrassed Nigeria Breweries PLC by getting himself involved in a scuffle with 50 Cent's entourage at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos. There are different angles to the story of the fight between 50 Cent and Eedris, but it is generally believed that one of the Nigerian rapper's men was hospitalised as a result of the fight over seats. 50 Cents returned to America and refused to perform in Port-Harcourt after the incident.
The ex-member of The Remedies [ Eddy Montana, Tony Tetuila and Eedris Abdulkareem started the Hip-Hop. Things did not work out among the trio and they embarked on solo careers as the years rolled by ] who was accompanied by Kenny Ogungbe, the top gun of Kennis Music, tendered his apology in a sober mood and thanked the Beer Producing Company for assisting him in developing his career. The Kano born artiste also publicly declared that he was paid 3 Million Naira for the abandoned concert by Town Criers, an events company. Eedris, who started his music career in 1996, had previously denied that he was paid any appearance fees by Town Criers.
After the 2004 showdown with 50 Cents, Eedris had embarked on a campaign against Nigeria Breweries PLC. He composed a song that mocked the Brewing Company and he also told the audience at a show in South Africa that 50 Cents called Nigerians monkeys. Due to the rapper's aggressive behaviour and the falsehood he was spreading about the company, Nigerian Breweries banned him from performing at any concert it would be organising. Though officials of the company heard his apologies on Sunday, RV does not know if Eedris will be forgiven. Eedris Abdulkareem has been out of circulation for sometime. He's said to have lived in Brazil for sometime and has fathered two children with a Brazilian wife. His sons are appropriately named Lucas and Thiago. RV hopes Eedris has changed finally and will soon cease to be Nigeria's Poster Boy for Thuggish Behaviour.
Sources: modernghana.com, RV.
When I added her as a friend on Facebook, I didn't realize she was already a great woman. Then I started reading comments posted on her profile and found out that she was many things rolled into one. Tosyn Abisona Bucknor is a radio presenter( Top FM, Lagos, Nigeria ), writer, blogger and founder of THESE GENES [ An organization that creates awareness about the misunderstood Sickle Cell Disease through fashion and entertainment ]. Her popularity is gradually reaching cult status and she's got this knack for coming out with new ideas in all her endeavours. However, Tosyn has also shown that she can sing and she has come out with some great songs that are receiving good airplay in Nigeria. Her music is what RV will be really focusing on in this post.
Tosyn sings under the name CON.tra.diction though she's got other alter-egos. I have listened to her songs and I'm impressed with her delivery. The songs were well produced and I've seen a couple of her videos. Let me start with 'Dreams'. This song deals with issues of love and sacrifice, and also inspires us to move and pursue our dreams while staying with those we love. The video of 'Dreams' is on YOUTUBE and it was shot by AK One. It is a colourful video with great camera work and lovely people. You need to listen to this song to get my drift. 'Hidden Motives' is another great track of hers that I listened to on the internet- http://www.ilike.com/artist/Tosyn+Bucknor+the+CONtradiction. This song sounds like a Rock song from one of the numerous British bands I've heard recently. Tosyn also sounds like Corrine Bailey Rae with her philosophical lyrics. 'First' is also available through the link I've given above. It is a song that acknowledges the importance of cherishing the person that we first fell in love with. I'm also of the opinion that the first love Tosyn is talking about in this song is God.
After listening to this great woman's music, I have some questions on my mind. Does Tosyn Bucknor sound too foreign? Can her music sell in Nigeria? Will an average Nigerian music lover pick up her CD when it is eventually released? Tosyn's songs are deep and I'll place her in the category of Asa, GT The Guitar Man and Nneka Egbuna. I feel Tosyn should explore the international market more with her music. With all the swagger and bling that is displayed by the artists making waves in Nigeria, Tosyn's music might appeal to just a small section of Nigerians. While issues concerning the marketability of her music gives me some concern, I'm really proud of what she's achieved so far. Tosyn Bucknor is really versatile and talented. With the energy she puts into her work as an on air personality and musician, it is hard to imagine she has the sickle cell disorder. While growing up, she fell ill many times and had to make several trips to different hospitals where she was given injections, drips, blood transfusions with lots of money being spent in the process.
Her ailment has not stopped her from chasing her dreams. She has this to say to us:
''Most people do not understand that a person living with sickle cell can do anything a person not living with sickle cell can do. The difference is that we have to be more careful.'' Tosyn's story has made me realize that I can achieve anything I set my mind to notwithstanding the circumstances around me. She's a qualified lawyer and also the CEO of S.h.a.r.e.s [ A Network that connects people together ]. I love her music and I feel she has messages she wants us to hear. Tosin Bucknor Rocks!!
Where To Find Tosyn Online: www.speechgirlbucknor.blogspot.com, twitter.com/tosynb
Sources: bellanaija.com, www.ilike.com
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Friday, 9 July 2010
If you've always been concerned about the music being played on radio these days, I feel respite is at your doorstep. I got hooked to the music of Outkast back in the mid 90's. I was in Lagos, Nigeria on holidays as a student of Ijebu-Ode Grammar School, Ijebu-Ode, Ogun State and I'd rented a VHS tape of MTV Raps from a Video Store in the Ogba, Ikeja area of the Centre of Excellence. I discovered Buckshot Shorty and Black Moon through the tape, but I was stunned with the video of Outkast's 'Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik'. Over the years, I've become a huge fan of the group. You just can't ignore the amazing creativity of Andre Benjamin ( Andre 3000 )and Antwan Andre Patton ( Big Boi ). The fact they've received 6 Grammy awards and have sold 25 Million Albums as a group cements their name on Hip Hop Music's Walk of Fame.
Big Boi has just dropped his first official solo CD 'Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty' ( Def Jam, 2010 ) and hip-hop heads are already feeling his effort. Boi has been working on the album since 2004. He tested the waters by releasing 'Royal Flush', 'Something's Gotta Give' and two other songs on the internet. He got positive feedback from his fans but his Record Label, Jive Records, thought otherwise. Jive told him his album was not commercial enough and refused to release it. Big Boi was told to emulate Lil Wayne in order to appeal to people. Our hardworking brother ended his contract with Jive and teamed up with Def Jam in order to push his material. Although the executives at Jive Records stopped Boi from including some dope tracks he recorded with Andre 3000 on this album, we're still left with a good album in our hands.
Boi has stayed true to the Outkast style and I particularly love the single 'Shutterbugg' and its accompanying video. The song is enjoying heaving rotation on the web. Try and listen to 'Follow Us'( A collaboration with Vonnegutt ) and you'll feel getting a Time Machine and disappearing into the roaring 90's. Other songs like 'For Your Sorrows' and 'Royal Flush' will surely make your day. You need to get this CD as soon as possible. I'm happy that Big Boi did not sacrifice creativity for recognition. According to him- ' Nowadays the industry has gotten to be everything other than music, such as who you're sleeping with or getting locked up or beef. I'm here to get back to this music. ' His album was already No 4 on Amazon's hip-hop best-selling pre-orders chart before it was released some days ago. With rappers like Wale, J-Cole and Yelawolf laying bars, we might just be seeing a revival of real hip-hop music.
Where to find Big Boi online: www.bigboi.com, www.myspace.com/bigboi
Sources: bigboi.com, The Independent,UK, RV.
RV believes in great music no matter where the vibe comes from. The video above remains a classic. It just goes to show that there are not many good hip-hop artistes around these days. Snoop Dogg's 'Doggy Dogg World' inspired many budding rappers all over the world when it was released in 1993. I love the song and the accompanying video to bits. The old school setting, the clothing, and the chorus done by The Dramatics reminds me of Soul Train [ That Old famous Dance Show which was aired on Nigerian TV stations in the early 80's ]. If you look at the video properly, you'll see your favourite rappers in it- Dr Dre, Warren G, Foxxy Brown, Kurrupt, Daz, The Dogg Pound Clique et al. I refer to the greatest era of Rap Music as the roaring 90's. I mean 1990-1996. Cheers.
After losing out to Britain's Dizzee Rascal as Best International Act at the BET Awards 2010, P-Square [ Paul and Peter Okoye ]has continued to make the headlines in a great way. RV has gathered that the group is set to sign a four year endorsement deal with Globacom, a respected African Telecoms Company. The deal is said to be worth 240 Million Naira and an official announcement will be made any moment from now. According to our reliable sources in Globacom, all that is left is for the company's chairman, Mike Adenuga, to give the final approval for the deal to be sealed. Globacom has been interested in P-Square since 2009 after the company started thinking of dropping its biggest music ambassador, D'banj, after the Koko Master's demand for a raise in his endorsement fee. Globacom is keen to add P-Square to its list of ambassadors but we are not sure if the Okoye twins will be replacing D'banj. The twins who are currently on tour in the United States have refused to comment on the new development.
Apart from the Globacom deal, P-Square was recognized at this year's Sierra Leone Music Television Awards [ SLMTV ] awards ceremony. They won the Best African Artists Award at the event. This is the first time SLMTV is honouring non-Sierra Leonan musicians. P-Square are very popular in Sierra Leone. The group has toured many countries around the world and has succeeded in maintaining a high standard. Active from 2004, the twins who are from Ifite Dunu, Anambra State, Nigeria, have a solid fan base in South Africa. Their current album is 'Danger'(2009) which features Tuface Idibia, Frenzy and J Martins.
Sources: RV, Peace Online FM.
Tuesday, 6 July 2010
Be prepared to hear slogans like 'Nothing Dey Happen', 'Omo, which levels?', and 'Man wey God don bless, no Man can curse'[ He who God has blessed, no Man can curse ] on the July 30 2010 when Nigeria's Innocent Ujah Idibia, popularly known as 2Face, rocks the audience at The Troxy, East London, England. The concert which is being organised by Starmix Management will also feature Mario, an American R&B Pop singer and dancer who has received Grammy Award nominations. The major performer of the night will be Tuface Idibia and he will draw in a lot of Nigerians and Britons of Nigerian descent to the concert. It should be noted that there are a lot of Nigerians in London and 2face is very popular among the Afro-Carribean community in Britain and the United States.
2Face was born in Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria and was a strong member of the Plantashun Boyz, a R&B group that has since broken up. He attended the Institute of Management and Technology [IMT], Enugu, where he did his National Diploma Course in Business Administration. He performed at shows and in parties at IMT and neighbouring institutions like Enugu State University of Science and Technology, Enugu [ ESUT]. A singer-songwriter, 2Face has a rich discography. He has three albums to date: Face2Face [ Kennis Music, 2004 ], Grass2Grace [ Kennis Music, 2006] and The Unstoppable [ Hypertek Label, 2008 and 2010 (International Version)]. 'African Queen', his Award Winning track was the sound track of the 2006 comedy film 'Phat Girlz'. 2Face has won a lot of awards including Best African Act at the MOBO Awards in 2007 and the Best R&B Act at the MTV Africa Music Awards in 2009.
DETAILS OF THE TROXY CONCERT:
The 2Face concert will be hosted by the Award winning MC Jazee Phizzle. Solid Disc Jockeys will be on hand to set the venue on fire with their skills. They include DJ Exclusive and DJ Jam Jam.
ADDRESS: The Troxy, 490 Commercial Road, London, EH1 OHX.
For Ticket Bookings: www.starmixmanagement.com
Sources: Wikipedia, starmixmanagement.com, RV.
Saturday, 3 July 2010
Glastonbury 2010 has come and gone. This year's event was well packaged as usual. 70 acts thrilled the hordes of music fans at Worthy Farm for almost a week. The event was also used to celebrate the 40th year of the Festival. There were crossover acts from the USA like Stevie Wonder and Snoop Dogg while Corinne Bailey Rae and the Gorillas held forte for our lovely country, Britain. The major setback for Glastonbury 2010 was the withdrawal of the headline act, U2, from the Festival due to frontman Bono's back injury. Notwithstanding the absence of U2, the Festival was memorable with all kinds of artistes holding their own on different stages. Next year's event will be holding from June 22-26, 2011. RV thinks you need to register for next year's event to avoid being left out. Michael Eavis and his family have done well. They are a blessing to the United Kingdom. Cheers.
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This song by Nneka Egbuna gives you pure eargasm!! The first time I listened to this track, I felt like chatting up Cheryl Cole. It is a love song with a deep meaning. 'Love' is just one of Nneka's cache of amazing songs. To really discover her music, you need to log on to YOUTUBE for an experience you're likely not to forget for a long time. We at RV will also appreciate it if you can visit her well designed Myspace page and her website: www.nnekaworld.com
You will find information about her upcoming appearances on her website. She is performing at different places and events this summer. Step into the world of this charming lady. Cheers.
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Video courtesy of YOUTUBE.
I don't know how to begin this piece on Nneka Egbuna. I'm lost for words and I must confess that I spent hours researching her online, and wondering whether I've got the right to describe her music and lifestyle. Nneka is indeed beyond description. I'm smitten with the way she sings, raps, talk and answers questions. To me, she is just incredibly talented.
Nneka is from Amawbia in Anambra State, Eastern Nigeria, though she was born and raised in Warri, Delta State. Her mother is German while her father is a full blooded Nigerian. However, Nneka grew up in Nigeria without her biological mother, and instead was taken care of by her step-mum whom she helped in running a local restaurant. Her father was a disciplinarian who did not spare the rod but consistently flogged the young Nneka for any bad behaviour. Nneka's family was not rich and she had to be contented with what she was given. Living in Warri [ A city in the Niger-Delta, Nigeria's oil region ] opened her eyes to the steep poverty and struggle for survival around her. Her Spartan upbringing has influenced her music and lifestyle as an accomplished artiste.
In 2001, Nneka Egbuna left the shores of Nigeria for the first time. It was a journey that she did not choose to make, but which she had to embark on to fulfil her destiny. She arrived in Germany without a knowledge of the German language and her European background. She was taken care of by the German authorities until she got a place of her own. Nneka, a graduate of Anthropology, started singing in her bid to combat loneliness. She found her early years in Germany difficult as she was encountering a new culture and had to come to terms with her identity. In 2005, she started recording with Hip-Hop producers [ Including DJ Farhot, who has really brought out the best in her ] and also performed with a live band. Honestly, I'm really impressed with Nneka's rapid development and ascendancy musically. This is a lady that has been praised by the likes of Lauryn Hill and Nas [ She opened for Nas and Damian Marley on the duo's Distant Relatives Tour ] and has appeared on the David Letterman show in the States.
Nneka's music is a hybrid of Hip-Hop, Funk, Reggae, blues, soul and Jazz with an African touch. Her influences include Nigeria's Afro-Beat legend Fela Anikulapo Kuti and US rapper Mos Def. She's also inspired by the works of Ken Saro Wiwa, the late Nigerian writer and human rights activist, who was executed by General Sani Abacha's ruling junta in 1995 for his spirited campaign against corruption in the oil rich Niger Delta Region. Her affiliation with Ken Saro Wiwa can be seen in her call for Justice, the recognition of human rights, universal love and peace. Her hard work as a passionate musician has not gone unnoticed. She won the Best African Act at the Music of Black Origin Awards [ MOBO ] held in Britain last year. Her popular song 'Heartbeat' is a favourite of people at UK clubs, with the Chase and Status remix of the track captivating mainstream music lovers.
Nneka is signed on to SONY Europe for her first three albums: Victim of Truth (2003), No Longer At Ease (2005) and Tho and Fro (2009). In order to break into the American market, she was signed by SONY Epic and her fourth album 'Concrete Jungle'( A collection of lovely songs ) was released in the States this year. You need to listen to some of her tracks like 'Love', 'God of Mercy', 'Heartbeat', 'Beautiful' [ This song is really refreshing and brilliantly performed by Nneka ] and 'Kangpe'. Nneka is prolific and there are a lot of her songs out there for your listening pleasure. I find it hard to choose any of her songs as my favourite. As soon as you think you've found one of her songs that you can't do without, another hot track of hers pops up on the web. This goes to show the depth of Nneka's talent. She is currently performing in different parts of Europe and the USA. It should be noted that she performed at the Glastonbury Festival on the 25th of June, 2010. This mixed race artiste is garnering global acclaim by the hour. She has displayed a steely determination to be where she is today. Perhaps this comment made by a listener on YOUTUBE sums up my thoughts about Nneka Egbuna-
'' She is so special, So made of feelings...Her voice sounds like a fluttering flag on the top of a mountain, like the wind among the stars...or simply like a symphony..the blue harmony of sounds. ''
Where to find Nneka on the web: twitter.com/nnekaworld, www.myspace.com/nnekaworld, www.facebook.com/nneka.egbuna, www.nnekaworld.com
Sources: www.nnekaworld.com, www.comelime.com, Wikipedia, RV.