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A Wiz (Kid)’s embrace for a RESCUE MISSION & a Patapeezy ‘Skelenke’ night of fun – 8th Ghana Meets Naija – A REVIEW

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“Ghana, I have a big surprise for you tonight”, announced headliner WizKid, midway through his explosive Ghana Meets Naija set over the weekend. The crowd, 15, 000 strong, was expectant. The euphoria with which his “second coming” had been greeted (his first appearance was in 2013), remained at a sternum-rattling decibel.

“Yo E, bring down the lights”, he continued, panting. “Ghana, I have my brother with me tonight. Make some noise for the dancehall king!” If one thought the noise at the Fantasy Dome in Accra couldn’t get any louder, one was terribly wrong. Shatta Wale, of whom Wizkid spoke, is mayor of the city, and like Jesus Christ, his entry is always triumphant. Donning a red tracksuit, his hair bleached, the controversial singer charged unto the stage, and headed straight into the waiting arms of WizKid for a brotherly embrace. Wale went on to perform two of his most notable hits recently; “Freedom”, and “Gringo”. He also called Wizkid his “fucking blood”, which, in regular English, means “brother”. It was pure chaos.

The gesture was a key highlight of the concert, and marked the deflation of any fracas that existed between them –a situation which had been sparked by Wale’s November 2017 comment, that he did not perceive the “Ojuelegba” singer to be a superstar. The remark, when it was made, had generated friction between the two West African nations; while some perceived Wale’s statement a legitimate posture by an artist confident in his craft, others called it blasphemy, emphasising that on the African continent, WizKid remains unrivalled.

It is instructive that their “reunion” happened on at Ghana Meets Naija particularly. For eight years running, the show has served as grounds to play out sibling competitiveness that has existed between both nations for as long as can be remembered. Put together by Bola Ray’s Empire, the concert is among the most significant on Africa’s music calendar. A major proving ground for anybody who is “anybody”, the show has been mounted by top musicians including Davido, Tiwa Savage, Sarkodie, R2Bees, Naeto C, Don Jazzy’s MAVIN crew, Falz and a host of others.

Because of his clout today, WizKid is not only aeronaut of the African sound, but also an influential unifying force. Like his forbear, 2Baba, his running message for a long time has been this: “one Africa, one love”. And though he’s been a darling of Ghanaian music lovers since the start of his career in 2011, bringing out Shatta Wale during his performance, endears the Surulere native deeper in the hearts of Ghanaians.

There’s a disparity between “best” and “favourite”. WizKid’s claim to the first adjective may be contested, but there’s hardly any question about his legitimacy as the second. Often, while performing, he would boast; “the problem is, WizKid got too many hits”. It’s founded, because very few colleagues have as many everlasting anthems in their catalogue. And when an artist has solidified his foundation in this manner, everything else falls in place. WizKid’s stagecraft is effortless, and the charming smile that vivified his face proved how much honest fun he was having. The man is loved! Every few seconds, a zealous fan would slip past the many muscled men who constituted WizKid’s onstage security, if only to touch the helm of his garment (a neat white sweater on whose chest the letter “A” was carried by a red heart symbol, over blue denims).

Fans charged to the stage to party with their idol.

Save for Ghana’s Patapaa, who earned widespread praise for his “man of the match” performance, no other act was ceiling -shattering  as anticipated –perhaps due to the sound challenges; perhaps, due to how long the event dragged (it ended at 4 am, June 10). Best known for his 2017 breakout single, “One Corner”, Patapaa’s big night was heralded by appellations from an eloquent young girl clad in colorful kente and traditional regalia. Via songs as “Kumchacha”, “One Perma”, “That Thing”, “Akwaaba” among others, spirited dance moves, and the determination of a warrior, the man also known as Patapeezy, left a lot of head scratching among his skeptics. Many brushed Patapaa off as a flash in the pan, certain that after “One Corner”, his talents were incapable of securing him permanence in the music industry. When he lost out on “Most Popular Song of the Year at the Ghana Music Awards months ago, it was expected to dispatch him into oblivion – but no – it turned out to be momentum for him; a momentum that has seen him appear on works on established colleagues as Medikal, Guilty Beatz, Article Wan, Shatta Wale, and FlowKing Stone. His thrilling set brings the following proverb to mind: “the stone the builders rejected became the head cornerstone”.

Patapaa earned widespread praise after for his “man of the match” performance

In the final analysis, the Fantasy Dome did witness a party for sure – a solid lineup as the one that was paraded on the night, would guarantee that; Mayorkun, Dice Ailes, Mr Eazi, Fancy Gadam, Stonebwoy, Yaa Pono, Kuami Eugene, TIC, KiDi, Kurl Songx, Sista Afia, NanaYaa, Wisa, KME, Asamoah Gyan, Tiwa Savage, King Promise, Mugeez, etc. The ultimate African playlist was on rotation, and it was a sumptuous buffet. DJ Nii Ayi Tagoe, DJ K Crakk, DJ Vyrusky, and Vision DJ were also efficient in holding the crowd; with timely interludes or as sidekicks for performing acts.

Without question, West Africa commands African melody. Led by Ghana and Nigeria, the sub-region enjoys a shared musical spice and ancestry, thus, bears a sonic sameness that has birthed numerous collaborations between these countries.

At this point, the franchise is bigger, and has become an African affair. At this edition, themed the “rescue mission”, the show welcomed Gambian acts signed to Sierra Leonean record label Kabaka Multimedia and Entertainment (KME). A UK leg was also recently held, and organizers have announced European editions in coming months. WizKid maintains that the continent is home to musical gold, however, the quest to become a strong global force must be done on the back of an African agenda. “Together we push”, he reiterated at the show which is indispensable in the attainment of the goal of world dominance.

This year, the show welcomed Gambian acts signed to KME.

To musicians the continent over, Accra is a second home – testament of Ghana’s identity as a hospitality hub. The nation, while it holds firm its musical identity, is also welcoming of “sounds from the other side”. It has constantly served as a solid peripheral support base for many acts on the continent, and a bonding agent for music lovers across Africa. This solidarity is best witnessed at Ghana Meets Naija, on which, lifting a finger above his head, WizKid proclaimed: “one love to Ghana, one love to Nigeria. Africans, we are one”.

Sponsors of Ghana Meets Naija 2018 include Kasapreko Alomo Gold and Storm Energy Drink, Allied Oil, Somoco Ghana Ltd, Nasco Mobile, Kirusa, Point and Play, Rova Surveillance, Dame lashes, Pernod Ricard, Tang Palace, Fix Consult, EIB Network (Starr FM, Live FM, Gh One TV, Kasapa FM, Empire FM, Ultimate FM, Abusua FM), Graphic Showbiz,  Y FM, Aftown Music, Muse Africa, Ghana Music.com, West Hills Mall, Achimota Retail Centre, Accra Mall, and Timepiece Gh.

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Kuami Eugene fortells current troubles with “Wish Me Well” – WATCH!

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Jointly-produced with Willisbeatz, Kuami Eugene’s latest song, “Wish Me Well”, appears to have anticipated his current woes —specifically, for claiming in a GH One TV interview, that he wouldn’t partner Patapaa for a song because the latter’s sound was too “noisy”.

Eugene has since apologised for the statement, stressing that his comments may have been taken out of context.

Visuals for “Wish Me Well” were directed by Rex:

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Hear Teephlow tout his lyrical aptitudes on “Red Velvet”

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Teephlow touts his lyrical aptitudes further on “Red Velvet”, his latest offering. Produced by Elementbeatz & Kopow, the hiphop number sees the rapper also honour fans and other supporter of his craft over the years.

Teephlow is current holder of the VGMA “Record of the Year” laurel.

Listen to “Red Velvet here:

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YOU DO ALL! Samini joins Deon BOAKYE on new reggae offering

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Deon Boakye’s got his first blessing from Samini on a song. “You Do All” is Deon’s latest cut with an official video to it featuring Samini. It was produced by Peewezel and video was shot by Jwillz.

Deon Boayke was introduced by Samini in April this year during Vodafone Ghana Music Awards 2018 as the newest addition to the HighGradeFamily.

This first cut is a manifestation of the journey Samini promised the young musician, Deon Boakye.

The official video is due to hit the screens this week.

Listen below:

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“Could this be Love?” ponder R2Bees in new collab with EFYA — WATCH!

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Afropop duo and BET honourees, R2Bees, mull over an age-long question: how can one tell if a set of actions constitute love or a futile undertaking? And who better to tap than chanteuse Efya, who has sung about the concept throughout her career?

Produced by Killmatic, the song is carried on  a lean R& B swing, and sees Efya bounces back the question Mugeez’s poses in the hook —and delivered in a troubled wail — in  the exact same words: “could this be love, is this forever? Or ebi say I dey waste my time, you dey waste your time?/ Are you loving me, or just for pleasure? Or ebi say I dey waste my time, you dey waste your time?”

On his part,Omar Sterling —the rapper half of the duo — relates in a sobering session — profound worship for a lover, admit to “falling deeper”, while at the same time digesting antipathy that often characterises love —and the compromises thereof, rapping in part; “I put my trust in you, put my hopes in it/ I put my heart on my sleeve, put my soul in it/If you ever break my heart, that will be all for me/ but I’d rather die for you than live with somebody”“girl you’re picture perfect/ is this picture worth it/ could this be love or a bitter lesson?”, “even when I’m right, I try to be the bigger person”.

Could this be Love is released under R2Bees Entertainment. Get it on iTunes.

Watch the accompanying video, directed by BABS below:

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STATEMENT: Shatta Wale apologises for “unpleasant exhibition”

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For an “unfortunate display of obscenity” that was “mistakenly posted” by an associate on social media Tuesday, June 19,  and a fit of diatribes targeted at media personnel for republishing the video, controversial dancehall singer, Shatta Wale, has expressed remorse.

A statement, dated June 20, and signed by the singer, pleads for pardon from his family, fans, record label, and corporate Ghana for the shameful act and embarrassment that it may have brought to them.

Furthermore, the statement sees Shatta (born Charles Nii Armah Mensah) reiterate his brand as being “a law-abiding one; one that will not do anything untoward to bring it and its partners into disrepute”.

“The brand would also not do anything to affect the sensibilities of the large following and support it commands.” he adds. Read the full statement, published on his Facebook page:

Meanwhile, his latest single, “Man Like Me”,  is out now:

 

 

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Ko-jo CUE & Shaker, Mr. Eazi named for upcoming Ms. Lauryn Hill tour

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BBNZ rappers Ko-jo Cue and Shaker have been named alongside global music icons as Talib Kweli, Nas, Busta Rhymes, A$ap Rocky, SZA, and an array of other top artists for Ms. Lauryn Hill’s ongoing tour to commemorate 20 years of the release of her groundbreaking debut; “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill”.

The album, published in August 1998 by Ruffhouse/ Columbia is considered as one of the most influential bodies of work by in modern times. A fusion of Neo-soul, hiphop, and R&B, the album birthed such hits as “Doo Wop (That Thing)”, “Ex-Factor”, and “Everything Is Everything”, going on to win five Grammy awards from ten nominations.

Ko-jo Cue and Shaker are the only Ghanaian representatives on the tour. In the past, rapper EL, and neo-soul act Jojo Abot have both appeared on Ms. Hill’s tours. Nigeria’s Patoranking, and Mr. Eazi are also listed as gust performers.

The tour will see the former Fugees vocalist and actress perform across the US, the UK, Belgium, Norway, Canada, Finland, Sweden, among other key global spots.

More soon…

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