Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Shatta Wale and Rashid Abu (R)
Controversial Ghanaian musician, Shatta Wale, on Sunday allegedly brutally assaulted a man at his East Legon residence after virtually kidnapping him.

The man, who gave his name as Rashid Abu, told DAILY GUIDE that Shatta Wale beat him up in the presence of his (Shatta’s) manager, Lawrence Nana Asiamah Hanson, aka Bull Dog, and some ‘macho men’ over an amount of GH¢150 the musician owed him.

Attempts to speak to Bull Dog or the controversial musician were unsuccessful as their lines were not active.

Text messages sent to Bull Dog’s phones also did not elicit response before press time.

Shatta Wale, known in real life as Charles Nii Armah Mensah Jnr., and his purported hoodlums allegedly picked Rashid from his shop at Adabraka Sunday afternoon under the pretext that he was going to pay GH¢150 he owed the young man at his East Legon residence.

“He came to pick up some outfits worth GH¢150 from my shop five months ago but refused to pay. After some time, when I called he refused to answer. I called him on Sunday; he picked it and started insulting me. He even told me that he was not going to pay me my money. Later he came to my ‘Blow Money Fast’ boutique at Adabraka in the company of some ‘macho men’ and Bull Dog. He asked that I join him in his car so that he pays me my money,” Rashid Abu stated.

He asserted that he was reluctant to go but after pleadings by Bull Dog, he entered the car, adding that Shatta Wale drove him all the way from Adabraka to his house and later forced him to kneel down and apologise for calling to demand for his money.

GH¢50 Notes
According to the young businessman—who is believed to be in his 30s—Shatta Wale gave him several slaps with a bundle of GH¢50 notes while Bull Dog looked on.

Rashid, who naturally tried to defend himself, was cautioned by the ‘macho men’ not to venture, else they would kill him.

“When we got to his house, the ‘macho men’ opened the gates and once we got in, Shatta Wale asked me to kneel down and he began slapping me with a bundle of GH¢50. I tried to defend myself but his thugs warned me to stop, else they would kill me right there. Bull Dog even told me to do what Shatta would tell me else I would be severely beaten up,” he narrated.

Rashid told this paper that Shatta gave him the bundle of the GH¢50 notes he used in slapping him and instructed him to pull his money out of it. “I refused but after the ‘macho men’ had threaten to give me more slaps, I took the money, counted GH¢150 for myself and gave him the rest,” he added.

The victim has since reported the incident at the Central Police Station in Accra. He was prepared to purse the assault case in court, he told DAILY GUIDE.

Shatta Wale, as an artiste, has gained notoriety for insulting persons and institutions whose opinions about him he does not agree with.

He was recently in the news for publishing on his social media page, some four videos of himself making derogatory and insulting statements against Charter House.

The musician also hurled insults at his colleague musicians, workers of Charter House and owners of the company. A portion of the video has even been said to border on threats.

Charter House, a private company with expertise in events management and production, later sued him for defamation.

They are demanding GH¢10 million as damages for the defamatory comments made in the four videos that the artiste had uploaded on the social media.

At the first hearing, the court granted an order restraining Shatta Wale from making further defamatory remarks about Charter House.

Shatta Wale is now begging for an out-of-court settlement of the case and has formally written to lawyers of Charter House to that effect.

The case has been adjourned to November 2, 2014.
Rev Eddie Coffie
Veteran Ghanaian actor Rev Eddie Coffie has been elected new president of Ghana Actors Guild, (GAG), the umbrella body for Ghanaian actors.

He takes over from Nii Odoi Mensah who had been the guild’s president for several years.

Rev Coffie used to be the vice president of the Guild during the tenure of Odoi Mensah.

Veteran actress Vivian Achor, a popular face in the movie industry, was also elected the vice president of the Guild.

During Nii Odoi’s tenure of office, one of his major problems was getting current hot face actors to be involved in the activities of the Guild. He has complained several times that majority of such actors are not members in good standing. Not every one of them is a member. The few who are members too don’t pay their dues.

NEWS-ONE is yet to confirm the number of the current big name actors in the industry who were at the congress.

There is however no doubt that the new president’s major task will be uniting Ghanaian actors into a strong voice in Ghana’s creative industry.

By Francis Addo (Twitter: @fdee50 Email: fdee500@yahoo.com)
Steve Asare Hackman
Steve Asare Hackman, President of the Film Producers Association of Ghana (FIPAG), has asked stakeholders in the film industry to encourage upcoming producers to churn out high quality movies rather than criticising them.

In recent times, film critics and even some movie producers have been expressing worry about how some films produced in Ghana have low standards and are affecting patronage.

Speaking to NEWS-ONE about that situation, Mr Hackman stated that the issue of falling standards in the film industry has been of great concern to the association.

“Since we came into office, this thing has been a great concern for us.  We know that the fact that about 85 per cent of those who are producing Ghanaian films don’t have formal training is worrying. One of our agendas that we had in our manifesto is to provide training or to talk to film training institutes in Ghana and outside Ghana to organise training for our members,” he said.

Mr Hackman disclosed that FIPAG was currently in talks with the National Film and Television Institute (NAFTI) and other training institutions to design curricular that will encourage these producers to enrol and upgrade themselves.

“When we had our stakeholders’ conference in Kumasi, one of the things that came up for discussion was the scripting. We all concluded that for a film to be good, the initial thing is the story. We also spent a lot of time to find out how we would train some of our members. If a producer, who is already a member of FIPAG, has his money and interest in film and he has started, what do we do? Do we stop them? No we can’t. What we are doing now is to talk to NAFTI and other training institutions and see how best we can come out with a curriculum which will suit that requisite requirement to enter these schools. FIPAG is working tirelessly on this,” he said.

However Mr Hackman was quick to add that rating a film as high or low standard was mostly discretionary since what one may term as a good film may be a bad one for another.

“Not all Ghanaian films that are produced are low standard. Rating a movie as low standard is mostly discretionary because there are so many things one will have to use—like the storyline, acting, editing and directing among others—before arriving at such a conclusion. What you term as a good film might be termed as a bad film by another,” he noted.
Obour(left), Roshi Motman, CEO of Tigo(right) and another Tigo executive.
Bice Obour Osei Kuffour, President of the Musicians Union of Ghana (MUSIGA), has commended telecommunications company Tigo for their efforts to help digitize Ghanaian music.

Last Friday, Tigo Ghana announced the launch of ‘Tigo Music’ and a partnership with Deezer, an international music streaming service, that will provide Ghanaians with unlimited music experience.

The partnership allows Tigo customers to enjoy Ghanaian and foreign tracks on their phones and tablets through pre-paid data bundles and the Deezer application.

According to the MUSIGA President, the partnership was in order since it would create more wealth for the industry.

“As a Union we are very interested in this and for us, one of our key aims is making more wealth for the industry and that is one of my personal passions. Since 2011 we have been trying to create a digital portal that gives access to digital music for musicians to earn money in their pockets. We have had several discussions with different bodies and what Tigo and Deezer have presented is a very solid platform and we feel it was worth the try,” Obour told NEWS-ONE.

As part of the deal, artistes who sign on to Deezer would earn some amount of money anytime someone streams and listens to their works.

He disclosed that any member of the Union could submit their works at any of the MUSIGA offices and sign the contract to enable them get their songs on the platform and enjoy its benefits.

Tigo would also be sourcing exciting new and local content through a new venture with the digital music company, Africa Music Rights, which funds, acquires and manages music rights across the African continent.

“MUSIGA endorsed the Deezer platform and we play a key role to ensure that all musicians spread around all the 10 regions of Ghana and wherever MUSIGA has offices are able to bring their songs and sign the contract. We play that intermediary role to ensure that are members are on the platform so that they can also benefit from this income generating activity that is more or less going to be a boost and an add up to the revenues that the music industry already has. And then, of course, once Tigo is speaking with music in their DNA now, we are also interested in this partnership because it is going to lead  to a lot more talent discovery activities,” he stated.

Music streaming is the fastest growing area for the global music industry and music content is already the second most popular mobile phone feature in sub-Saharan Africa.

As part of the launch, Tigo will have a party for its customers at the Accra sports stadium on October 31, with some artistes like Miss Vee, 4X4 and Guru, with Davido being the guest artiste, scheduled to be present that night.
Funny Face and Akorfa Adjeani- Asiedu
Popular Ghanaian comedian Funny Face has made public his feelings for elderly woman and veteran Ghanaian actress Akorfa Adjeani-Asiedu.

According to the comedian, he was a secret admirer of the popular actress and had a crush on her when he was a kid.

Funny Face made the revelation when he spoke on YFM in Kumasi over the weekend.

He was in Kumasi on Saturday to support Lydia Forson to premiere her new movie, A Letter From Adam, at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology.

The movie stars Akorfa and she also made appearance on the red carpet to hang out with student fans.

Ahead of the event, the crew had interviews on YFM and Luv FM.

Funny said on YFM that it was a privilege for him to have made the trip to Kumasi with Akorfa because he had a crush on her long ago when he was only 13.

“I must say I had a crush on Akorfa when I was only 13. I used to watch her on our black and white TV and it feels good I’m here with her,” he also told NEWS-ONE.

By Francis Addo (Twitter: @fdee50 Email: fdee500@yahoo.com)

Ghanaian musicians over the weekend put up spectacular performances at the just ended Felabration music and arts festival in Nigeria.

Felabration is an annual festival of music and arts to celebrate the life and works of Nigeria’s foremost musical icon Fela Anikulakpo Kuti.

The six-day music and arts festival took place on October 13 with a massive climax on October 19.

Veteran palm wine highlife musician and father of Mεnsa from the FOKN fame, Tumi Ebow Ansa, Yaa Pono and Yasmine Helwani, among others, took turns to thrill the audience with some indigenous Ghanaian tunes.

To crown the event, which took place at Ikeja in Lagos, Femi and Seun Kuti—sons of Fela Kuti—performed some hit songs from their father’s collection.

The event also brought together renowned musicians like Hugh Masekela, Awilo, Baba Maal, Les Nubians, King Sunny Ade, Lagbaja and Asa among others.

Felabration is known to attract a lot of artistes—both locally and internationally—as well as music and art lovers around the world.

Fela is remembered as the creator of afrobeat, a social critic, political activist and a philosopher of his own political ideology. He is still celebrated as a hero by millions for his contributions to society.
Kojo Antwi
Ghanaian highlife maestro, Kojo Antwi, has waded into the ongoing debate over the determinant factors of the trend of music in Ghana and what musicians consider before coming out with songs.

According to Kojo, TV and radio stations, and sound engineers, have in recent times become agents responsible for determining the direction Ghanaian music should go.

“I think that in recent times, if you watch critically, TV, radio and then sound engineers determine the direction of our music. Right now, if you produce the song and you do not shoot a video to go with it, it becomes difficult to sell it,” Kojo Antwi stated on Peace FM’s Entertainment Review.

He explained that in their era, musicians told sound engineers what instrument(s) to play during the production, noting that but now young musicians walk into the studios and sing or rap to an already cooked up beat.

“These days the young artistes only think about dance music and nothing else. Our generation was different. We used to go into the studio and tell the producers that for this particular song we want piano or organ. But what we see now is that before these young ones go into the studio, the beats would have been cooked up already. They only have to go there and rap or sing or something,” he said.

He disclosed that even though he is sometimes influenced by the imaginary trend, he always has a game plan anytime he walks into the studio to record a song.

“But for someone like me, when I go into the studio I know I have maybe 12 different songs I can do on an album. I will look at different things, like the trend, before I will look at what people want to hear from my songs.  Then I will do some to take my fans on an adventure.  I study to find out which songs will bring my fans closer to me and which ones will take them on a journey,” he said.

Kojo Antwi admitted there are times when musicians are influenced by some trending beats and styles. But he was quick to add that having an identity as a musician is the best way to stay unique.

“Definitely you will be influenced with some sounds and others but when you have an identity as a musician, then you have an advantage over the new artistes,” he noted.

Kojo Antwi has over the years produced some timeless hit songs which have won him various awards both internationally and locally.
Kumi Guitar
Highlife musician Kumi Guitar has stated that unless his management directs him to stop commercial driving, he has no intention of giving up his profession as a Taxi driver.

Nana Yaw Kumi, his official name, has worked as a commercial cab driver for years now and believes it is one of the reasons his fans like him.

“I do not feel discouraged at all that I still drive a Taxi. I feel my Taxi driving is part of the reasons Ghanaians like me. It was through the Taxi driving that I met my boss, Mark Okraku Mantey. The Taxi also feeds me at some point as well. Until my management says I have reached a point in my career where I should stop driving a Taxi, I won’t stop driving my Taxi,” the ‘Break Into Two’ singer stated.

Kumi, who is currently managed by Mark Okraku Mantey, Chief Executive of Slip Music, disclosed that since he came into the limelight, there has been some instances where passengers get into his Taxi, negotiate the fares with him and later realise he is the musician they have been listening to.

“My Taxi is at the workshop being fixed and it will be back on the road soon. But I have had the experience, like twice, where passengers sit in my car and then later recognise me. I believe that by driving a Taxi I am indirectly working for Ghanaians,” he said.

He is currently working to finalise his album which is expected to be released later in the year.

“Currently, I’m in the studio working on two songs for the completion of my album. My boss, Mark Okraku Mantey, also has all the plans. If God permits, we will release some videos to go with it as well. Then Kumi Guitar will be unveiled as an artiste,” he added.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Celebrated Ghanaian rapper Obrafour has expressed worry over the rate at which some young artistes release songs that follow the imaginary trend that DJs create.

According to Obrafour, his experience in the industry has taught him that music is not only about dancing, therefore it is better for a musician to sit back and write songs that are from his heart rather than rushing to put out songs that follow DJs’ trend.

“If I have to speak in general, most of the time what I see is that if a new trend arises then a lot of people begin to follow it because they think they can get a hit from there. A lot of the time too, you can apportion some of the blame to the DJs who play the songs. The DJs want a tempo which, if they mix the songs, will fall in place. Sometimes they find it difficult to play a slow tempo song and mix it with an up-tempo beat.

“This influences most musicians to produce songs that fall in the line. For me, I think it is a mistake that most of them do. Most of the time, music is not only about dancing. In my opinion, I think it is better to sit back and plan your songs before you release them, but not to come out in a rush,” he stated on Peace FM’s Entertainment Review.

Born Kwabena Okyere Darko, Obrafour recently released his ‘Odasani’ single from his upcoming album. The song which features rapper M.anifest has been receiving a lot of airplay since its release.

He added that the DJs cannot be left out of the problem since they are the ones who enjoy using a certain tempo, making it difficult for them to try other tempos.

“In the broader perspective, I blame the musicians who write the songs and the DJs who seem to enjoy using a certain tempo, making it difficult for them to try other tempos,” he said.

Obrafour has in the past produced some timeless and thought provoking songs. He is currently in the studio putting together his album, which is expected to be released early next year.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Highlife musician Kwabena Kwabena has explained the motive behind his ‘Adult Music’ hit song, saying that he wanted the song to amuse Ghanaians in the various aspects of their lives.

Despite the various debates among entertainment pundits and the general public as to whether ‘Adult Music’ is an x-rated song or not, it has been receiving a lot of airplay both on radio and at social gatherings.

“At a point I realised that people wanted songs that will amuse them and then again a song that was a little explicit.  But then, again, I didn’t want to lose what makes me a Ghanaian; that was why I chose a beat that was like the ‘Adowa’ beat,” Kwabena Kwabena stated.

He added that he also wanted a song that could be played in the clubs as well as at some social events.

“Also being able to bang it into a time that it can be played in the club.   Those were the things running through my head when I was writing the ‘Adult Music’ song,” he said.

For some time now, Kwabena has battled to clear the perception among a section of Ghanaians who are of the view that the ‘Adult Music’ is a profane song, which should not be played on radio or on TV.

‘Adult Music’ has gained so much popularity among lovers of highlife music.  The song basically speaks about what lovemaking is. Reggae act Samini, who was featured on the song, added his ‘Midas touch’ to the fast tempo highlife fused with Afrobeat track.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Kwabena Kwabena
Highlife musician Kwabena Kwabena has admitted that Disk Jockeys (DJs) in Ghana sometimes put pressure on musicians to produce songs that fit their playlists.

Kwabena Kwabena’s submission adds to the ongoing debate by entertainment pundits, industry players and musicians about who determines what kind of music trends at a given time.

“As to whether DJs determine the songs which musicians should produce, I will say that if you study how the presentation has become currently, people want to play songs that sink in back to back to back and as a result this creates some sort of pressure on the musicians. When this happens, you will have to keep the songs in the peak times and you are forced to do something that falls in line with the trend,” the ‘Adult Music’ hit singer stated on Peace FM’s Entertainment Review.

Kwabena Kwabena, who is part of the few young musicians putting Ghana on the map through highlife, was also quick to add that despite the fact that DJ’s sometimes prefer songs that fit their playlists at specific times, “I think if your song is good, the DJs will play.”

“For me as an artiste, I feel that you create something so that your fans will be amused by it. But then no one can run away from the fact that you want some publicity too and you need to study the trend that is banging around the time you are doing your song so that you won’t go way out of line.  You need to keep up with time and as an artiste that is how I see it,” he said.

The ‘Aso’ hit maker also disclosed that sometimes several factors—like beats and who produces the songs—go into play before music trends are established within a certain period.

“With the trends too for me, I think there are so many factors. You have to consider world beats, African beats and then you consider your local beats. It also starts from the studio. There are times when a producer emerges and begins to play according to a certain line or his sample or tones are quiet appealing for the time so that can sway anyone. But then as an artiste, you are to get bits and pieces of that so that your originality will not be lost. It is quiet dicey,” he added.

However, Kwabena noted that before he decides to bring out a new song, he studies the trend in order to produce a tune that will fall in place.

“This doesn’t have influence on me. My only headache is, I just have to study the trend, how people have to jam and try to bring a tune that can fall in place. But as to how the rhythms are going, I don’t think about it that much. I just want to keep up with time,” he said.
AWARD WINNING movie producer Shirley Frimpong-Manso has told the world she hopes to use the stories in her movie  to change the role of women in Ghana and in Africa at large.

“I feel very responsible, I do. Nobody in particular gave me that responsibility. I just felt I needed to do my part, especially when it comes to young women in Ghana. I think I have come across a number of young women that have a lot more potential than they have been made to think and it makes me extremely sad. And I like to use my stories to change that perception and let the young Ghanaian woman understand that there is a lot more than, perhaps, just going to school and getting married and just settling,” Shirley told CNN’s Sori Methu during an interview for the station’s Inside Africa.

The interview, recently aired to a global audience, was on Shirley Frimpong-Manso rewriting the future of women in Ghanaian films, with particular reference to her new production, V- Republic, which focuses on four women and the complexities of their relationships.

The 37-year-old Ghanaian movie producer is one of the few from the country who have earned international recognition, respect and acceptance in the movie industry.

Shirley, a working mother and inspiration to many women, told CNN what inspires her advocacy for women issues:

“I have been a strong advocate for women and women issues. I think this has been because, growing up, I mostly spent time with my mother and my sister so we were like the Three Musketeers sort of thing; and I sort of got to see the kind of things that my mom went through as a woman who was trying to work and still be able to take care of two girls. I guess that was where it all started.”

“Where in the past, it used to be the father who was making all the decisions on where the child is supposed to go to school or what classes they are supposed to take during vacation. When I take my son to school in the mornings, I see a lot more women who are actually on their way to work and are dropping their children and stuffs like that,” Shirley added.

Also captured in the CNN interview was award winning actress and TV host Joselyn Dumas, who has played leading roles in several of Shirley’s productions.

Joselyn spoke about her working relationship with Shirley: “we did not see that many female producers and directors until she came on and she pushed the boundaries. She tells the stories really well and she tells them tastefully. Even if there is a love making scene or some scene that is a bit uncomfortable, Shirley has a way of handling it and it does not even look too bad and it is tastefully done. I can see that a lot of people are following in her steps because most women are quiet shy and they hold back where pushing the boundaries are concerned.”

Shirley Fimpong-Manso happens to be the first female voice on private radio broadcasting in Ghana, a former model, a former organiser of the Miss Ghana Beauty Pageant, and the one taking credit for some of Ghana’s best movies ; Life and Living It, Scorned, Perfect Picture, A Sting In A Tale, Checkmate, 6 hours To Christmas, Adams Apple, Contract, Potomanto and recently addedDevil In The Detail.

By Halifax Ansah-Addo (Twitter: @HalifaxAnsahAdd)

Friday, October 10, 2014

Controversial Rapper Wanlov the Kubolor has stated that most Ghanaians who insult and criticise him wish they were like him.

Wanlov has, over the years, been consistent in generating controversy about himself and has been called many vulgar names because society is unable to relate to his style.

Some individuals on Twitter yesterday started lashing out at the ‘Beatrice’ hit maker over some pictures and comments he posted.

But he stated that Ghanaians often insult individuals they wish they were as a result of jealousy, adding that they wished they were like him.

“Ghanaians often try to insult by proclaiming pity for someone while being secretly jealous#WishingYouWereMe#SoakInYorSterileLife,” he posted on Twitter.

Known is real life as Emmanuel Owusu Bonsu, Wanlov is often referred to by many of his fans in Ghana as a ‘Half-Caste’. He was born in Romania to a Ghanaian father and a Romanian mother.

It would be recalled that Wanlov was recently in the news for saying Ghana’s “sickness” was bigger than the dreaded Ebola virus and Cholera.

Wanlov and his lyrical twin, Mεnsa, are known for their unique pidgin rap style, which has a touch of the Ghanaian language. The duo who call themselves ‘Foes of Kwame Nkrumah (FOKN) Bois’ are the first Ghanaians to put together a pidgin musical film titled ‘Coz Ov Moni’.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Nino with BBC’s Sophie Ikenye
Upcoming Ghanaian opera singer, Nino, has added his own flavour to the genre, making opera music more contemporary.

Nino, who recently appeared on BBC Focus on Africa, stated that growing up, his father used to play a lot of classical and opera music which challenged him to add “a touch of Africanism’ to the genre.

“Basically, I was brought up in a home that really appreciates good music. My daddy used to play opera and classical music at home; so if you didn’t even love it, you got to listen to and appreciate it. It reached a point I just decided to challenge myself with opera and also add a touch of Africanism to it to make it more contemporary,” he told Sophie Ikenye on BBC.

Opera music is an art form in which singer and musicians perform a dramatic work combining text (called a libretto) and musical score, usually in a theatrical setting. It also incorporates many of the elements of spoken theatre, such as acting, scenery, costumes and sometimes dance.

Nino disclosed that he is able to blend opera music with palm wine, salsa and other local genres into a new genre he calls ‘Nuslam’ music.

“Nuslam is my music genre. It is more like a synchronisation of genres like opera blended with palm wine music or salsa music,” he added.

It is amazing how Nino was able to sing this genre of music so effortlessly and also in about seven languages including French and Italian.

“In Ghana opera music is picking up gradually because we are not really exposed to it but I think with time, they will get to appreciate it. Opera music is meant for good listeners and good music appreciators,” he said.

Ghana is lucky to have such a young musician like Nino to put such a unique style of music on the world’s music map.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Hammer of The Last Two
Award-winning sound engineer, Hammer of ‘Last Two’, has stated that most of the musicians in Ghana do not attach any professionalism to the trade.

According to him, most of these artistes now do their music in a freestyle manner, and noted that this is affecting the industry.

Edward Nana Poku Osei, as he is known in real life, disclosed that he had converted his ‘Last Two Music Group’ studio into a private one which allows him to handpick certain breed of artistes who are creative and exhibit professionalism when it comes to music.

“It seems to us that most of the artistes now do things like the freestyle; they just do things from the head. The way they go about their stuff is not quite professional, so we decided to go back and deal with artistes that we feel deserve to work with us.

“I don’t do mass production. My studio is a private studio now and I have the power to choose who I want to work with. It is not like the commercial studio that you can walk into and just pay money and record.  We are quite ‘choosey’. We want a particular breed of artiste to work with. With regard to professionalism and creativity, we want a certain calibre of artistes,” he told NEWS-ONE.

Hammer is one of the producers responsible for training and producing some of Ghana’s recognised hip-life acts like Obrafour, Edem, Okra Tom Dawidi and Kwaw Kese among others.His ‘Last Two’ record label recently signed on a new lyrical soldier called Tee Flow.
Kojo Antwi
Ghanaian music legend, Kojo Antwi, has tasked young and upcoming musicians to see music as a tool rather than a product.

According to the music maestro, a lot of young people venture into music because of the money and fame it brings, which in turn results in poor output.

I hear a lot of music right now and the only thing I hear, lyric wise, is shake your booty, make your body and baby you are that and this and all that. To us   Africans, music means more to us than these things,” he told NEWS-ONE.

The ‘Densu’ hit maker explained that for a country, which is being confronted with Ebola and Cholera, it is only wise that music is used to uplift people.

“We are confronted with Ebola, so much filth here in Accra and we are dying because of Cholera;   so we cannot sing about shaking your booty all the time. We must use music as a tool to uplift people. The young ones need to see music as a tool and not a product,” he said.

Kojo Antwi, who was unveiled as the recipient of the 2014 edition of the annual Legends & Legacy Ball, stated that he never set out to be a legend but to churn out great music that will last for eternity.

“If you sow the right seed then you will rip the right fruit; but if you go cashing money from the beginning, a lot of things will elude you.  I never set out there to become a legend. I just came out to do great music, music that my grandson will listen to in 10yrs time and say oh granddad you did very well on that song,” he added.

Kojo Antwi has over the years produced some timeless hit songs which have won him various awards both internationally and locally.
Reggie Rockstone
HIP-LIFE Artise Reggie Rockstone says he finds it more comforting that as part of the revolution to ensure fairness, transparency and equity in the distribution of royalties, an interim board of the Ghana Music Rights Organisation (GHAMRO) has taken over.

Reginald Rockstone Ossei was among the several music right owners who took up the crusade to kick out the old GHAMRO board.
“Just the mere fact that they are there and something is happening is more comforting.

The old system was terrible and it has been a long road of so much discrepancies. But the beautiful thing about the whole thing is, here we are today talking about it and doing something about it. 

Nothing goes on forever; and so this is a good day that we can actually acknowledge that there was some effort,” he toldNEWS-ONE.

According to Reggie, if the three main objectives for the revolution fairness, transparency and equity in the distribution of royalties are heeded to by the current GHAMRO administration, all the problems
facing the organisation will be solved.

“It will go back to my original slogan, which is accountability, transparency and equality in the distribution of royalties. These three are very important to this revolution, and once we set off on that note, everything else will fall in place like a domino effect. These things pretty much cover everything.
I don’t want it to sound like it is a witch hunt, but those three things mentioned above will definitely bring us the answers to the issue of recommendation,” he stated.

Meanwhile, it would be recalled that Carlos Sakyi, the ousted Chairman of the Ghana Music Rights Organisation (GHAMRO), was invited by the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service for what is suspected to be financial fraud and secret buying of a car without going through the legitimate procedure.

But Reggie Rockstone disclosed that the issues arising from the offices of the old GHAMRO are really dicey and scary.

“With the issue about the car and the others before the CID, if we have to look at it for what it really is, then yes, it is criminal; and this is where it gets really dicey and scary,” he added.
Kojo Antwi with his wife
Music Maestro Julius Kojo Antwi has been announced as the recipient of the 2014 edition of the annual Legends & Legacy Ball.

Despite various speculations in 2013 that but for some technicalities Kojo should have been the recipient, he confirmed to NEWS-ONE that even though he was approached by the organisers last year, this was the best time to be named legend.

“It took me a year to prepare for this. Everything that I do, I prepare ahead of it; and I knew this was coming. For me, it was like getting a stamp on a letter when I was chosen; it made it more official. Good things come to those who wait. This is the best time for me. This is an institution; they have their plans and arrangements. For me, I’m looking at now and the future, so forget about the past,” he stated.

Legends & Legacy Ball is an annual event aimed at paying homage to music legends who have churned out good tunes over the years, and have made Ghana’s music industry what it is today.
Imajin Advertising Company, organisers of the event, officially announced Kojo Antwi as the receiver last Thursday at an unveiling event at Oak Plaza Hotel in Accra.

The main event, slated for November 1 at the Accra International Conference Centre, will have some young talents like Samini, Edem and Bisa Kdei sharing stage with the ‘Tom and Jerry’ hit maker.
Mr Music Man, as he is popularly known among his fans, disclosed that he felt good that among all the pioneers who equally deserved to be honoured by this country, his name came up.

“It feels good to be honoured by your country. This is Ghanaians doing it for themselves.  I believe a whole lot of my pioneers deserve to be on this platform. But right now, this is what God wrote in my book,” he said.

Kojo Antwi has won several awards locally and internationally, namely, All Africa Music Awards, Our Music Award, Kora Award, and West Africa Tourism Award among others.
The event was graced by personalities like MUSIGA president Bice Osei Kufour, MTN officials, A.B. Crentsil and Anita Owusu among others.

Since the ‘Legends &Legacy Ball’ started in 2010, highlife kings Daddy Lumba and Amakye Dede have been honoured.
After the long vacation from music, hip-life legend Obrafour is set to premiere his new single onStarr FM’s STARR DRIVE today.

According to his management, Obrafour, known in real life as Kwabena Okyere Darko,will be on STARR DRIVE with host Bola Ray at 3pm to premiere the new single titled ‘Odasani’.

The single, which happens to be the first to be released from Obrafour’s upcoming album, features Rapper M.anifest.

This will be the second time the ‘Rap Sofour’ has teamed up with M.anifest. Last year the two came out with the ‘No Shortcut To Heaven’ hit song.

“This will be the first from Obrafour’s upcoming album. All of this is part of preparations towards his album launch. We will be dropping few singles as time goes on until the album is finally launched,” his manager, Hammer of the Last Two Records, told NEWS-ONE.

The ‘Odasani’ single was produced by award-winning sound engineer Hammer of the Last Two Records.

Obrafour has in the past produced some timeless and thought-provoking songs. This new single, according to his management, will be no different.

He is currently in the studio putting together his album which is expected to be released early next year.
Ghanaian rapper Brenya has stated that he had to shelve his University degree, as well as an opportunity to work in a prominent corporate firm, so as to build his music career.

The rapper, known in real life as Kwasi Brenya Baah, is a graduate of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) and has a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science.

“I had to sacrifice my Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science and recruitment by a very prominent firm right out of school for music, because I believed more than anything that I had a story to tell. My family thinks I should work and do the music part-time; but I see this music thing as a full time job and want to concentrate on this and nothing else,” Brenya said.

According to him, he derives inspiration from good music which serves as blueprints for him to follow in his music career.

“When I listen to good music, I get inspired to produce works that can match them. I don’t work from a vacuum. I know the blueprint is already there and all I have to do is find those who take the craft seriously and study their works and try to outdo that. By so doing, my works stand out and come out very good,” he added.

Brenya is currently in the studio working with ASEM and Kofi Knaata among others. He is set to release the video for his new single ‘Barikisu.’

“I am trying not to use the collaborations too much because I feel I have to work and make good music and more people will like to work with me. I am releasing a video for my new single ‘Barikisu’, which is on heavy rotation now across major radio stations,” he disclosed.

The talented artiste claims he does not believe in competition when it comes to music because his sole aim is to please the people who listen to his music and not his fellow musicians.

“I see it as a market and if you bring the best product, people will flock to it. It’s about knowing what the people want to listen to at every point in time and serving them nothing but that. They are the taste-makers. The more you satisfy them, the more hits you gather in your catalogue.”
Rapper M.anifest has been spotted in town with US director Garth Von Glehn shooting the ‘No Shortcut to Heaven’ music video.

The ‘No Shortcut to Heaven’ hit song is an inspirational hip-life song which was released in December 2013. The song is about hard work and determination on the road to success.

According to sources, Garth Von Glehn flew in from New York last week to direct the music video which features Ghana’s rap legend Obrafour.

Von Glehn has directed music video for some crème de la cream artistes like South African rapper Proverb, Flavour, K Cee and Davido among others.

This is the first time M.anifest is working with a producer outside Africa on a music video.
M.anifest, known in real life as Kwame Ametepe Tsikata, recently released a video for his ‘Jigah’ song shot on the streets of Johannesburg in South Africa.

The ‘ No Shortcut to Heaven’ video, which is expected to be released later in October, was produced by TTD Media. The production house has been working with M.anifest for some time now.
Hammer of the Last Two
Legendary beat producer, Hammer of the Last Two, has called on the interim Receivers and Managers team of the Ghana Music Rights Organisation (GHAMRO) to adopt an electronic logging system to make the distribution of royalties among musicians accurate.

The present GHAMRO currently uses a fixed price quota system to collect royalties on behalf of right owners.

But Edward Nana Poku Osei, as Hammer is known in private life, says it is better to monitor separately and allocate royalties on behalf of music right owners based on airplay.

“I agree with the logging system that is done internationally, where the individual works are monitored separately. Maybe one artiste performed better in terms of airplay than the other. With that you can’t give them the same amount of money. We need to fix the logging system that will determine who exactly got that much airplay and who didn’t. The information has to be accurate. So I think they should change the fixed price system to the electronic logging system,” the Chief Executive of Last Two Music Group told NEWS-ONE.

It would be recalled that Carlos Sakyi, the ousted Chairman of GHAMRO, had been invited by the Criminal Investigations Department of the Ghana Police Service over some huge cash withdrawals made from the organisation’s accounts by the Carlos Sakyi-led Board which could not be accounted for.

However, Hammer stated that if the allegations turn out to be true then it is criminal and the culprits must be dealt with.

“If that is true, I won’t blame the system; I will blame the individuals who are in charge because the system at that time, even though it wasn’t the best internationally, was working for them. But when it comes to acquiring things for themselves  using funds from the organisation, then I think it is a crime and I will blame the individuals,” he said.
LG Electronics, global leader and technology innovator in consumer electronics, has unveiled its new G3 smartphone in Accra.
The smartphone has a stunning Quad HD display feature, which offers an exceptional picture quality and an immersive experience for customers.

It has a classic metallic body with lighter weight adding comfort to make the device much thinner to allow the easy one-hand control.

The LG G3 phone also has a 13megapixel camera with an auto optical image stabilization (OIC) function which reduces blur while taking pictures.

It comes with a laser auto focus technology that measures the distance to the object instantly, giving you perfect quality photos.

According to Y.C. Choi, product manager for LG Electronics, the LG G3 smartphone provides users with a customized knocking pattern of 3 to 8 digits to unlock the phone.

“Our motto for the LG G3 phone is simple is the new smart. We run a study and then we came to the conclusion that what makes the customer appreciate a smartphone is when they have what they need on their phone.
The G3 provides customers the easy way to use applications to access the phone.  If that customer can use the phones easily, then that will give him value for service and customer satisfaction," Y.C. Choi told BUSINESS GUIDE.

The phone is currently available in all LG electronic shops and accredited dealers across the country.

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I am a Creative Arts Writer who is also into Strategic Communications, Public Relations, Photography and IT consultancy. I am also Social media enthusiast and an alumni of the Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ).


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