PRESS RELEASE For Immediate Release From America to Africa, warm welcoming melodies ring true in a new 3-track EP released by Atlanta based Afrofolk/Afrosoul Nigerian Singer-Songwriter, TOSINGER. The new EP titled ‘Ode to Accra’ was birthed and recorded in Accra during a 3 day sojourn. It was inspired by the vibe and love for the city and her people.
The intro on the EP pays homage to Mama Africa, the Motherland, reflecting the sounds of Accra, rightly tagged “City Vibrations”. Track 2 – “Find Your Way Back Home ft Bubunaé” is a folksy acoustic number, a gentle plea to all to connect back “home” and on Track 3 “Se Daadaa Le Wa?” produced by Kunle Kuti which he laced with highlife guitar riffs, Tosinger’s vocals pierces through diasporic time and space as she checks on her audience in her native tongue of Yoruba .. singing “Se Daadaa Le Wa?” which means “Are you doing alright?”.
Ghanaian music artist, Bubunaé who co-wrote and featured on vocals on Track 2 also executively produced the project with Decorusbeats as the music producer. ‘Ode to Accra’ was officially released on June 21st, 2021 and is currently available on all digital platforms including Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes, Bandcamp, Amazon, Tidal etc.
ABOUT TOSINGER Atlanta based Afrosoul/Afrofolk Indie Singer-Songwriter TOSINGER, has been singing for more than two decades in Nigeria, the UK and now in the US. With a couple of published works to her name, her music displays a heartfelt conveyance of originality and inspirational lyrics. Tosinger expresses an afrocentric sublime musical flow that is soulful and folksy, sometimes jazzy, with subliminal messages incorporating her Yoruba language and cultural sounds which sits her comfortably in the world music space. An eclectic artist in her own right, Tosinger is also an actress and an event curator. For more info, please visit http://www.tosinger.com Twitter and Instagram @Tosinger
Heartwarming greetings from my African sunkissed heart to yours 🙂 and a Happy new month of August to you!
I just arrived from my home country of Nigeria the past month of July, promoting my debut album“Organically Singing” and garnering some press/media presence and on ground performances. Follow me at @Tosinger on instagram to have a sneak peak of that journey, see a few pics below. Thank God for His mercies, grace and favor and thank you Lagos for your hospitality.
I am also delighted to present to you a creative product of my visit to Nigeria which is officially released digitally today. I worked with the multitalented Producer/Musician – FloRocka– on my latest project, an audio drama/spoken word titled ‘Silent Thoughts’.
‘Silent Thoughts‘ is an Audio Drama/Spoken Word/Storytelling Project with an afro-theatrical edge addressing the issues of our times. As a spoken form of art on a musical backdrop, ‘Silent Thoughts’ intends to provoke and inspire thought towards change. Things have been quiet lately about the Chibok Girls. Whatever happened to #BringBackOurGirls? What is currently happening?
Loving the social campaign integrated as a marketing effort by the fashion retail site ‘The Limited’ tagged ‘The New Look of Leadership’. Brands are now developing ways to connect on the “real human” level with potential consumers/clients. Thanks to the new media age for making this easier and more effective.
TheLimited.com put together a selection of women from different fields, expressing a message of the perception of what #LeadingLooksLike :
Leading is a way of approaching life–and in today’s world, there are infinite shapes it can take. It’s time the definition fit them all. So we’re calling on leaders of all types to help build a vibrant community of inspirational women. Together, we will re-create the picture of empowerment to reflect the authentic, modern leaders we see every day—answering the question, “What does leading look like?” with you. And her. And us.THE POSSIBILITIES ARE UNLIMITED.
Click Play: : Watch the Video
In other news, my social media feed has recently been saturated with lovely & delectable designs from the just concluded Lagos Fashion & Design Week which took place towards the end of October, 2015. LFDW is a premiere fashion event which brings together media, industry, buyers and consumers to view the current collections of designers in Nigeria, West Africa.
For the past 5 years, LFDW has remained dedicated to the growth and promotion of creatives in the industry by nurturing, fine tuning, rewarding their skills and providing them with a solid platform for achieving their goals.
This vision is primarily centered on providing on-going support to designers via mentor ship, education and capacity building as well as opportunities to present their work before an audience that facilitates commerce.
And as is my custom with fashion weeks, here’s my 7 favorite designer selections from the showcases at the Heineken LFDW2015. All photos are via LFDW (Follow at @LFDW_NG) Photo Credits: Kola Oshalusi (Insigna).
The use of a denim pant as gele is such an eclectic idea. I love the unusual and this is such a welcoming one, something I would do. Brilliant!
LANRE DA SILVA AJAYI
The headpiece, the flow of the fabric!
The mustard color, the styling..
The work of an artist friend Laolu Senbanjo was incorporated in this fabric design. Kudos!
The simplicity, the flow, the vibrancy, the fabric texture combos.
The bohemian look :), the vintage feel, the nudes..
The girliness, the playfulness, the cuteness..
Last, but not least
The Art, the artsy backdrop..this is not just fashion, this is art on canvas.. very eclectic!
These are my personal preferences and in no way serve as an endorsement out of the about 25 designers who showcased at the event, check out the other designers to see their work.
Beautifully Dreaming…Positively Doing!
Organically Singing the album, now available for download here!
Seyi Voice, a Nigerian Gospel Music Artist releases two new singles today titled ‘Champion’ and ‘He’s Able‘ in anticipation of his upcoming album ‘Sound Of Victory’. Produced by ‘Dr Groove’ and recorded at G-Zone Studios, ‘Champion’ has an African highlife swing to it, a danceable rhythm with inspirational lyrics for everyone from all walks of life, to let them know that they can make it and to be assured that God is not a respecter of persons; “if you believe that you are a champion (in Christ), you are on your journey to success”
Listen and download here
About Seyi Voice
Seyi Voice is a dynamic worshiper, music director, singer/songwriter and a music producer. All his life he has been all about good music. He owns God’s Zone recording studio. Presently, he runs an outreach program called “Unusual Worship” which comprises of a collective of powerful anointed song ministers . His upcoming album is titled Sound of Victory due to be released at a date yet to be announced. He travels nationwide to minister in churches and events.
Seyi Voice says:
“Having gone through a lot and seen a lot, I discovered that pain is inevitable when birth is about to take place in one’s life. God’s people, I want you to know that in every situation, God shall always remain God”
Nobel Prize Winner, Wole Soyinka of Nigeria, makes the role of women like Funmilayo clear when he states, “I have always insisted that American or European feminism has little to teach most other societies —- here is proof [For Women and The Nation: Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti] in this portrait of a remarkable woman in remarkable times, brought vividly to life in a work that explores the often neglected crevices of history.”
Fela Remembers Being Introduced To His Excellency Kwame Nkrumah By His Mother
There are many who see Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti as not only the mother of Fela Ransome-Kuti and the Afrobeat Musical Movement but also as the mother of the modern African women’s resistance movements in the 20th century. Scholarship on the crucial roles played by women in their independence movements and in anti-colonial movements in Africa is still underexplored. What do we know about the relationship of a Nigerian leader like Mme. Ransome-Kuti…
The Lagos Photo foundation will be hosting an opening reception of Akintunde Akinleye’s solo exhibition entitledEach Passing Day, which will take place on Sunday, April 19th, 6PMat the Red Door Art Gallery, 51 Bishop Oluwole Street, Victoria Island, Lagos. Nigeria.
Each Passing Day is a careful selection from the hundreds of thousands of single images, extracted from different documentary projects and spot news events, which were inspired by the Nigerian space during the last decade and now.
This exhibition showcases Akintunde’s photography documentation of Nigeria by bringing together photographs categorized to reflect series of unrelated events and activities of the daily lives of ordinary citizens in Nigeria.
The pictures depict a truthful rendering of each passing day in the life of resilient Nigerians and show the political, social and physical landscape in which we exist.
Akintunde Akinleye, is the first Nigerian Photographer to have been awarded a prize in the prestigious World Press Photo, Netherlands in 2007 with an iconic photograph of a man rinsing soot from his face at the scene of an oil pipeline explosion in Lagos, December 2006.An award fellow of the National Geographic Society- All Roads photo project, Akintunde currently lives in Lagos and works for Reuters covering breaking news, documentary pieces and human interest stories.
The Akintunde Akinleye Exhibition is brought to you by The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria with its joint venture partners and the LagosPhoto Foundation.
LagosPhoto Festival is the first and only International Photography Festival in Nigeria. LagosPhoto is on the lookout for photographers working in Africa and from the African Diaspora telling unique and interesting stories.
send 5 low res images (preferably from one project), project synopsis, your CV+ bio + date of birth to: firstname.lastname@example.org The subject line: Talent Call_your name
Submission policy: Due to the high volume of submissions, they will contact you if they are interested in working with you. They are interested in all genres of photography. Get in touch!
Launched in 2010, LagosPhoto is the first and only international arts festival of photography in Nigeria. In a month long festival, events include exhibitions, workshops, artist presentations, discussions and large scale outdoor prints displayed throughout the city with the aim of reclaiming public spaces and engaging the general public with multifaceted stories of Africa. LagosPhoto aims to establish a community for contemporary photography which will unite local and international artists through images that encapsulate individual experiences and identities from across all of Africa. LagosPhoto presents and educates about photography as it is embodied in the exploration of historical and contemporary issues, the sharing of cultural practices, and the promotion of social programmes.
Produced and Directed by Joanna Lipper, ‘The Supreme Price’is a feature length documentary film that traces the evolution of the Pro-Democracy Movement in Nigeria and efforts to increase the participation of women in leadership roles. Following the annulment of her father’s victory in Nigeria’s Presidential Election and her mother’s assassination by agents of the military dictatorship, Hafsat Abiolafaces the challenge of transforming a corrupt culture of governance into a democracy capable of serving Nigeria’s most marginalized population: women.
“….Some of the best documentaries tell inspiring stories of people overcoming the unthinkable… With an uptick in kidnappings and killings, the situation in Nigeria is looking bleak. How exactly did the country get to such a state? Joanna Lipper’s film looks at the pro-democracy movement in the corrupt African nation but also gives a helpful tutorial on Nigerian politics….” – The Washington Post
Gidi Up is a Nigerian television and web drama series starring OC Ukeje, Somkele Iyamah, Adeyemi Okanlawon and Titi Sonuga in lead roles. The series is created by Jadesola Osiberu and executively produced by Lola Odedina. It is produced by Ndani TV and sponsored by GTBank. Episodes are first aired online through Ndani.tv web channel and the first episode was aired on 20 February 2013.
The series follows the lives of four young adults (Obi, Tokunbo, Eki and Yvonne) who are pursuing success and independence in the city of Lagos, revealing the challenges they are faced with at every step of the way in their quest to achieve their dreams. The title of the series is culled from the popular term “Las Gidi”, a nickname for Lagos city.
The first season of the series was an eight-part web miniseries, with a length of approximately eight minutes per episode and used to be broadcast only online.The second season was however converted into a full 30-minute episodial television and webseries, with the first season combined together, re-edited and aired on television as the pilot episode for season 2. (culled wiki)
I got hooked on Season 2 and the season finale Episode 12 was published today. This will not be a review, or an expose on my favorite or least favorite characters because I will not like to preempt your thoughts about it. I must say it however gives you a good perspective of contemporary modern life of the young and upwardly mobile professionals in today’s Africa plus it’s great entertainment. The script/film is quite impressive and the acting is on point. I have compiled the videos below for your easy viewing. Enjoy!
And if you want to watch a compact Season one, here goes
When it comes to music and general aura of the cultural creative, I am an old soul as evident in a huge section of my music taste. So it was with sparked interest and melancholy that I heard of the news of the death of Nigerian highlife, afrogroove, afrofunk musical legend ‘Bola Johnson’ who ironically, his discography included a title tagged ‘Man no die’ . I got the news of his demise, as posted on the wall of a fellow afro old-school music connoisseur who is a music historian, DJ & owner of ‘Comb & Razor’, Uchenna Ikonne. The news was broken to him this morning, however Mr Bola Johnson passed on recently, April 6, 2014 to be precise. No further info on the circumstances of his death. May his soul rest in peace. His music legacy lives on.
From the vaults of Philips in Nigeria comes this collection of mysterious trumpeter and bandleader Bola Johnson. Unmissable 60s and early 70s recordings for all highlife and Afrobeat fans. A missing jewel from a golden age of Nigerian music – Vampisoul Records
Bola Johnson & His Easy Life Top Beat
About Bola Johnson – as culled from a VampiSoul Publication which now links to Munster Records.
Up till now, Bola Johnson only seems to figure in the margins of the high octane Lagos music scene of the late 60s and early 70s. He may have never had the focus, the career longevity or the catalogue of titans like Afrobeat’s Fela Kuti, juju’s King Sunny Ade or highlife’s Victor Olaiya, but his music took its own magnificent route through the popular music of the time. His joyful treasure of a voice embellished every style in his repertoire, from the sweetly melodic heights of highlife and palm wine to the soulful skanking of Afro-blues/funk and Afrobeat; his red hot trumpet scorches its way to your yearning soul; his tunes vibrate with infectious hooks and undulating rhythms; he seems equally at home composing across the stylistic range… Funk? Calypso? Highlife? You got it!
Bola Johnson was born in 1947 into a musical family. He attended Livingstone Academy in Lagos and, after that, the prestigious Eko Boys High School. In 1962 he dropped out of school to follow his musical destiny. His trumpet dreams were inflamed by his time playing with Nigerian trumpet-playing legend and highlife maestro Eddy Okonta, but he joined Eric Akeaze’s highlife band as a singer and maracas player in that same year, then resident at the Easy Life Hotel, in Mokola, Ibadan, which was the hub of the music scene in Nigeria in the 60s. When Eric Akeaze and his band left the Easy Life Hotel, Bola was asked to stay and set up the Easy Life Top Beats. They also toured the northern part of Nigeria. When Bola returned south, this time to Lagos later in 1968, he and his musicians were match fit and ready to make their funkiest tracks.
In 1964, while still only 17 years old, Bola had been signed to the Philips West African record label, and he recorded many of the rootsier tracks you can hear on this album as 7-inch singles. In 1968, in Lagos, he recorded the funkier material on his “Papa Rebecca Special” LP and later a rootsier album entitled “Ashewo Ajegunle Yakare”. Given how great he sounds, you’ve just got to ask exactly why more material wasn’t recorded. According to Bola, the A&R people at Philips in those days allowed sentiment for the past to override their judgment in promoting new artists, because they had highlife giants on their label such as Osita Osadebe, Rex Lawson, Victor Olaiya and Bobby Benson, and so it was hard for younger artists to get their attention, backing and consequent exposure.
Additionally, it was always difficult for him to own musical instruments, and bandleaders were the people who owned and supplied their musicians with musical hardware. Of course, you must factor in the civil war and the consequent decrease in popularity of highlife. Then the rise of juju, Afrobeat and the briefly fashionable Afro-rock. Classic and unique as Bola’s approach was, it didn’t seem to light the same kind of fuse for young Lagos. As his musical opportunities began to go off the boil, Bola went into broadcasting, firstly at Radio Nigeria Ibadan in 1970 and then he moved to the FRCN (Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria) in 1973. Sometimes he played at the Cool Cat in Ebute Metta, Lagos.
Bola Johnson 1947 -2014
Listen to his “Lagos sisi” track
Boomkat product review of ‘Man No Die’ CD
The irrepressible Vampisoul label presents a wonderful overview of Nigerian legend, Bola Johnson. With all the attention afforded to Fela Kuti, Victor Olaiya and King Sunny Ade, Bola seems to have slipped by all but the most ardent collectors and Nigerian natives, that is until Kayode Samuel painstakingly researched and dug deep in the crates to collect these twenty two track, spread over two discs. As you’ll discover when dipping in, Bola was a charming personality who could adapt his charming vocals and trumpet playing to a range of styles, from Calypso to Funk, Highlife and Afrobeat. Disc 1 contains the Afrobeat spiced palm wine styles of ‘Asewo Ajegunle Yakare’, the frisky merengue-like rhythms of his house band Easy Life Top Beats on ‘Oro Aiye’, and the swinging highlife of ‘Iyawo Kokoro Mi Da’ with its charming soap opera intro. Disc 2 opens with the killer drums of ‘Mimo Mimo Loluwo’ (sample hunters beware), before firing up the deadly James Brown-debted Yoruba Funk of ‘Ezuku Bozo’ and ‘Lagos Sisi’, plus the infectious blues licks and conga shake of ‘Lagos Special’, and heartwarming rootsy Highlife in ‘Edumare Soro’. Once word gets out about this album, there’s gonna be a stampede from the Afrobeat lovers!
Whatever happens to music royalties of legendary Afro musicians? What is the structure in place for African musicians to get what they rightfully and legally deserve when they are long retired or gone? or after foreign music tastemakers see the treasure in their work and take over representation/distribution, do they get what they rightfully deserve? This will be a great “look into” for future and I’ll be checking with my friend, Uchenna Ikonne, on his thoughts on that soon.
Talking about mysterious legends, this video documentary about William Onyeabor,the man and his music, intrigued me so much, to say the least. It is interesting how the relevance of ‘old music’ is now catching and riding on the waves of the ‘modern age’. Watch this.
Keeping the legacy of afro music alive, and promoting and supporting talented indie afro~artists today, who make contemporary afrofusion music on the continent and in the diaspora, is a passion/project of mine tagged ‘Afrodreamfest’. Check on it and be in the know and kindly spread the word. Thank you!