Lagos – It was live music heard across the lagoon as the long awaited launch of ‘Asoju Oba’ the 5th studio album for the Afrobeat/Jazz Band Ayetoro took place at Ember Creek in Ikoyi Lagos on Sept 8th. It was colourful evening of live performances in two sets by the traditionally-attired 12 piece band led by music director, pianist, composer and founder of the band ‘Funsho Ogundipe.
Ogundipe, who has been described as a maverick in the Nigerian music scene, performed the new tracks like ‘Seeds in a Pod’, his Hip-hop Jazz tribute to Gil Scot Heron; ‘Baba don go’ a tribute to Fela Anikulapo Kuti; and title track ‘Asoju Oba’ a funky dance floor number with sax and piano solos and his imagination of what Afrobeat would sound like in the hands of the great Thelonious Monk.
Together they filled the cool night air and added colour to the lively venue overlooking the Lagos lagoon with some unreleased tracks like ‘Revenge of the Flying Monkeys’, ‘Something Dey’, ‘Itchy Fingers’ ‘Dzorwulu Blues, Akwaaba and ‘Langa’ from previously recorded albums Naija Blues, Afrobeat Chronicles I & II ‘. The performances brought out Ayetoro’s Afrobeat and Jazz experimental fusion with Hip-hop, Neo-soul, spoken words and highlife with supporting acts from Jazz vocalist Yinka Davies, Rapper Hakeem Yusefu (aka Mendo) and Akinyemi Ogundipe (aka Skillz), and crooner Verony Odili (aka Sista Soul).
The well attended evening was compered by Yinka Akinkugbe and drew music enthusiasts and fans like the Lagos State Commissioner for Tourism Disun Holloway, veteran writer and music critic Benson Idonije, Yeni Kuti artist and daughter of Afrobeat father Fela Anikilapo Kuti, photographer Don Barber, finance guru & writer Nimi Akinkugbe, guitartist Wole Adamolekun, columnist Jimi Disu, various TV & radio on-air-personalities and many more.
The launch solidified the band’s posterity in working with outstanding artists, great instrumentalists and musicians worldwide since starting out in 1996, and has set the stage for a well deserved local and international recognition.
Photos by Ladipo Soetan
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