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Of SENA DAGADU/ RedRed @ REPUBLIC the other day

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In what they described as a farewell gig,  singer Sena Dagadu and pop group RedRed (consisting FOKN Bois rapper M3nsa and Hungary’s DJ Elo) took over the Republic Bar – Osu two or three Wednesdays ago –farewell because it would be their last performance in the country for many months as they honour a lineup of international engagements.

Wednesday nights are reserved for live band sessions at Republic, but an exception was made on that particular occasion. It was worth it!

Founded on significant freestyle offerings on a blasé night, the treasured performers, who had drawn hundreds to Alliance Francaise merely days before, led the well represented crowd through a collection of songs from their sterling catalogues, which span decades. DJ Elo steered background music from turntables and a laptop mounted on shiny steel drums, as Sena and M3nsa (taking turns in a seamless flow) dished out affective singing, or poured down our faces, torrents of powerful rap .

The crowd; a delightful cosmopolitan convocation, required little enticement –because, this was a pack not unfamiliar with whom they had turned out to see. They consisted a cult following which has been built over many years, and have cultivated an attachment with the profound artistry typical of both Sena and RedRed. Therefore, there was absolutely zero traces of cynicism in the way of the tender air which blew past our cheeks and noses. Rather, cheers accompanied curling cigarette smoke into the firmaments, beer bottles caressed  lower lips, eyes twinkled with genuine approval smiles, and applause kept coming. This kind of crowd is rare gold — the preserve/reward of those truly dedicated to essential art.

The show commenced later than the advertised 8 pm, and there were seconds of technical glitches at the beginning. That was rectified swiftly, and the show was in full force after that. M3nsa himself admitted minutes into the performance,  to how quickly “things had escalated”.

The concert itself was disarmingly frank, taking the manner of a long uninhibited conversation among friends.  There were neither MCs nor opening acts, nor other known constrictions of a “perfect”  show as extravagant lighting or ancillary stage effects. Even their attires as headline acts were uncharacteristic of many a modern performer. Without blinding jewellery, or excessively befuddling fashion impressions, Sena’s signature cheekbone dots, and the grey patch on M3nsa’s head, would serve as the “loudest” bit of their look. Profound, I know.

The Republic Bar gig came off the foot of a hugely success Connection Concert to crown the 2017 Hungarian Cultural Week celebrationHeld to highlight and strengthen the harmony between Ghana and Hungary, especially in the area of art, it saw a thrilling display of talent from both countries. Acts as Hungarian urban folk band Zuboly, Wanlov The Kubolor, Stevo the kologo player, hiplife veterans VVIP, fast-rising Worlasi, Gyedu Blay Amboley and Tumi Ansah all took to the stage on that historic Friday, March 17.

Surely, it is a profuse need to dispatch surplus energy from the Connection Concert that occationed the Republic Bar meeting. And it showed on Wednesday, March 22. Pure fire! Pure fire!

A pulsating marathon, M3nsa and Sena (who manned the microphones) traded verses, choruses, and provided rich ad-libs for each other’s songs, and of their collaborative pieces. This was all discharged with such astonishing originality that, it constantly invoked startled expressions on the faces of the beholding crowd.

The intimate make of the show is also worthy of mention. At the end of the day (artists will tell you), the “small” shows carry immense potency.

“I always like the intimate ones”, singer Worlasi told me in an interview before a March 18 Jameson Accra Connect gig at Cafe KWAE (One Airport Square). Incidentally an intimate gig too, he was joined by guitarist and Sobolo singer Six Strings, and they gave off impressive acoustic renditions of some of their best-known hits.

 “They don’t even know when the time is flying…with big shows, people can’t even ask questions, people can’t even make comments whilst you’re performing. Even if they do, you won’t hear it. And you can’t see them, so you can’t actually connect with them…”

That last part about the “connection” question, is what strikes me most about his answer. There was no doubt about the rapport available in the yard that night. Worlasi (who also graced the event) felt it heavily. So did Wanlov Da Kuborlor. So did Gyedu Blay Ambuley. So did broadcaster and fitness icon Giovanni Caleb. So did renowned contemporary painter Bright Ackwerh, and indeed everyone of us gathered there.

“There’s always something nice about connecting with someone”,  Worlasi concluded his response in that interview. I agreed with him after the Jameson show, and further, at the Sena/ RedRed gig.

Sena and RedRed come from deep and uncommon musical backgrounds, and their craft, littered with endless experimentation.  Sena has, since starting off in hiphop/drancehall collective Gimmeshot in 2001, gone on to publish several works of critical acclaim: Sena First One, Lots Of Trees, Grow Slow, Azdanê, Natural High, Take a Look, Only Solution Remix, Vol. 1, and DA 1 YAH EP 03. Months ago, she announced her latest: FEATHERS. Possessing a dynamic music palette, no one genre has successfully tamed Sena. And so, her influences have ranged from hiphop, reggae, funk, rock, among a host of others.

The third son of  Osibisa guitarist Tumi Ebo Ansah, M3nsa is an unlimited store of creativity, and so is restless –constantly seeking out new outlets for his boundless stream of ideas — as founder of hiplife group The Lifeline Family, as music producer (creating for  V.I.P, Obrafour, Tic Tac, Tinny, K.K. Fosu, Samini, etc), as solo act, and (simultaniously) as member of controversial duo FOKN Bois and pop band RedRed. He’s also a filmmaker, and sixty-two other things.

Social commentary is a core  in the music of both Sena and RedRed, and even as they thrilled fans present with toothsome melodies, and wrote realtime jokes from what was happening around, they still poked at our conscience intermittently…like when M3nsa, hearing the sound of an aeroplane in the skies far above, suggested that it was Chinese who had come to take our gold away. Ghana is at the verge of a water crisis as a result of illegal mining activities on our water bodies. Currently, production potable water has reduced to 60 percent, and all life in most of our rivers is gone, leaving behind only saddening brownness and disease. For residents in the city, the effects of galamsey (as illegal mining is called in Ghana) many not be as tangible as it is in the hinterlands. There therefore requires reminders as these, even at events as the Republic show, to awaken us to what consequences are impending as a result of our inaction.

Streets around Osu are always lively, because Osu is the hub of all nightlife in Accra. That Wednesday though, it experienced an extra pep.

 

See exclusive photos from the show:

          

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LISTEN: Keeny Ice ft Spicer – Elevate (Prod by Two Bars)

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Musician Keeny Ice is here again with another mind-blowing song,”Elevate” produced by Two Bars.

The song released under the management of Mo’shes Musik features Spicer, whose wonderful performance on the song is something worth talking about.

“Elevate,” tells Keeny Ice’s gradual success story; the hustle, disappointment, temptation and his flourishing career as a musician against all odds.

Signed by a Nigerian record label last year, the Rapper has been working passionately to impact his following and music lovers beyond borders.

Listen to the song below:

 

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BTS IMAGES: Black Avenue Musik’s S3fa readies new single ‘Marry me’ feat Jupiter

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Fast-rising Singer S3fa is getting ready to release her first official single ‘Marry me’ after her highly accepted Mashup.

The visuals accompanying the song, which features Dancehall act Jupiter was shot recently at locations in Kokrobitey in Accra.

The song was produced by in-house producer DJ Breezy and executive produced by Black Avenue Musik.

 

S3fa has been tipped by many as the next big thing because of her vocal ability after the likes of Becca, Efya and others.

See Photos and video below:

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MUSIGA’s “Top 20 Songs of 2017” merely an opinion – Joe Mettle

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Gospel singer Joe Mettle, has described MUSIGA’s recently-released  “Top 20 Songs of 2017” as merely   an opinion.

Compiled by Qisimah Insights, the list, which does not include a single gospel song, comprises solely, the most-played Ghanaian songs on radio. It includes offerings from such acts as Ebony, Shatta Wale, Kuame Eugene, KiDi, Patapaa, Stonebwoy among others.

The reigning VGMA Artist of the Year, during a recent interview with Accra-based Happy FM, challenged the Union’s list, wondering “how the research was done”. Indicating that many radio programmes commence with Gospel songs, he flatly challenged the veracity of the list.

He also stated that even “without research, one can tell gospel songs are played constantly on air”.

“ Until we are shown the bases of the research, the top 20 most played songs is just their opinion and that cannot be challenged,” he further said.

Born Joseph Oscar Mettle, the minister is author of several widespread hymns/medleys, including “Owawani”, which won him VGMA Artist of the Year last year, as well as “Bo Noo Ni”, featuring protege Luigi Maclean. Active since 2011, he has been associated with Danny Nettey, Nii Okai, KODA, Joe Beecham, Daughters of Glorious Jesus, Eugene Zuta, Yaw Sarpong among others.

 

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VIDEO: : Ephraim – I want to be rich feat. Opanka

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Quallo’s Production label frontman, Ephraim has finally released his highly anticipated first single of 2018, titled “I Want To Be Rich”.

The song, which features rapper Opanka, talks about the difficulties broke people go through before making it big in life.

“I Want To Be Rich” is accompanied by a clear-concept music video shot and directed by Bra Shizzle of Shi Studios Production.

The video was shot in locations around Jamestown environs in Accra.

The slow-tempo Afrobeats jam was produced by WillisBeatz.

Watch the video below:

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LISTEN: Jason El-A releases classic song ‘Things’ featuring Kwesi Arthur

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Jason El-A, host of the influential entertainment show on Tv “Rythmz on Ghone Tv” and campus show on Live FM “YWNF” who is also an artist drops new single with Kwesi Arthur and He calls this new Hit Single “Things”

Things is a song that basically talks about what people do for Love.The song’s video is expected to be released in February.

Jason El-A promises that this year, Ghana and the rest of the world are going to hear a lot of his work Musically”. Nana Dope “Right hand” Man of Jason El-A confirms that the musician has a lot of songs that When released, Africa will understand that He is in to Create Something Iconic with his Music because Music has always been El-A’s first love.

He also confirmed that Jason El-A has songs with Darko Vibes, Kurl Songs, Kofi Kinata, Medikal and others yet to be released with their Videos.

Listen to the song below:

 

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Patapaa drops long-awaited video for “One Corner” – WATCH!

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Swedru native, Patapaa Amisty, whose  breakout single “One Corner” proved to be the biggest song in Ghana last year, and hugely influential across the sub-region, has finally published visuals to the song.

Featuring viral footage from various celebrities and regular folk alike, partaking in the cultural phenomenon through dance, crouching, or climbing up structures, the video was directed by APOGA Studios and AFRIKABA.

Produced by Morgan Beat, “One Corner” exploded into national prominence along with its accompanying dance after Patapaa first performed it at the Akwambo Festival in the Central Region sometime in 2017.

Watch below:

 

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