EXTRA: Oh, Pele going ‘unsung’, By Bamidele Johnson

frontpageng
frontpageng
EXTRA: Meeting with a bonafide crackpot, By Bamidele Johnson
Bamidele Johnson

The versions of Juju and Fuji music I grew up knowing would have found a space, however small, for Pele in death. Or they wouldn’t have, given that Pele was not a Nigerian.

Both genres were big on tributes to those who lived grand lives across all walks of life that their exponents wanted to write parts of their history in songs. Kollington’s separate tributes to Awolowo, Okwaraji and Oschoffa, founder of the Celestial Church of Christ; Obey’s congratulatory ditty to Odegbami when the latter got married; and Sunny Ade’s grief-encrusted cut on the 1976 coup that killed Murtala Mohammed are among those I remember. Even Hakeem Ikandu, a soft sell editor, had a song dedicated to him by Kollington. Many of those songs were big hits.

Both genres were big on tributes to those who lived grand lives across all walks of life that their exponents wanted to write parts of their history in songs

That trend died a long time ago.  I don’t remember any fuji or juju artiste dedicating a song to Gani Fawehinmi, Aka Basorun or Pa Abraham Adesanya. Perhaps there were, but didn’t get to hear them. There’s a chance that the Yoruba society’s appetite for such has waned or wilted, even.

- Advertisement -

That trend died a long time ago.  I don’t remember any fuji or juju artiste dedicating a song to Gani Fawehinmi, Aka Basorun or Pa Abraham Adesanya.

Or is it that we no longer have people with the X-Factor/ genuine heroes? I don’t think that is so, as many are doing great things. However, the fields they’re in may not be great fodders for popular music. The soul-of-the-party type, yahoo boy, drug runner, dodgy business people and thugs of various strains are more likely going to have songs made for them than poets or inventors.

That’s where we are.

Share this Article