Thursday, January 18, 2007

Better Half


Best Couple Award

Eleven years and one month ago, I fell giddily in love with a boy. My hormones had played similar tricks on me before, but unlike all my prior loves, he was actually in my age group and I actually knew him in real life. I felt very certain that I was his girl for ever. Although he is a most delightful friend, I guess I can be grateful now that my willpower wasn't enough to make us marry.

I remember the week we fell in love. I remember too how Saamu (camp clown) organised an impromptu award contest on the bus back home. There were categories, nominations, votes, most of which I was oblivious to, being engrossed in my Beloved's speech as I was. I was embarassed - blushing red despite my dark brown skin, I was told - to find that we were Best Couple.

I was also secretly pleased to have won a cool award. It was nice to get attention for something not serious or schoolish, but Away-an: foreign, Western,

Some things haven't changed much. I'm still waaay more geeky-cerebral than cool (although at Caltech, I was considered radically cool, which just shows that "in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is the King.")

Nigerian Blog Awards

I nominated myself for a bunch of Bloggies this year. You should nominate your blog(s) too. Or other deserving blogs, if you're so inclined :)

According to TaureanMinx, another blog award organiser, a few people are now authorized to wear this badge of honour on their blogs:

These are only some of a multitude of fabulous Naija blogs out there. Next year, the awards will be even more awesome, because more people will vote, for more diverse blogs.

See all the 2006 Naijablogger winners!


t said...

The music I really want to post is Salawa Abeni. It has a part that goes "iwo ko lo da (x6), iwo ko lo da mi..." I can't find any Salawa music online at the moment (would she be thus left out if she was a man?)

My second choice would be a nice ghettofabulous Kollington song like "buroda mo fe kampala, o ti di poku lowo o, poku lowo e!" or Barrister's "Fuji Garbage," or like KWAM, or...

What's funny is that we used to make fun of this genre, the KWAM and Orlando Owoh, the "Fuji Ropopo" and the - who could forget - "OK now. Keep on rocking. orobokibo." Now I'm yearning to dance again, to listen to the music from back in the day, street or highlife.

Online, it's much easier to find the music of Osadebe like the classic "Osondi Owendi," and of course Fela, King Sunny Ade, Onyeka Onwenu, and their younger ones like Lagbaja, Femi Kuti, ...

Right now I'm listening to Bright Chimezie's "Respect Africa" from which I remember his agile dance on the video, which in my house was called "Okoro Bia."

Surprisingly, I couldn't find many recorded samples of Dan Maraya's music. There are some here - very funny and highly recommended.

One day when I speak fluent Arabic and more-or-less-fluent French, I'm going to learn Igbo and Hausa well well. Hausa is reportedly simple to learn (I took it in Junior Secondary as "L2" so I only know greetings and such, and Igbo is reportedly more difficult, but you know, as different as it sounds from Yoruba, they're still related languages with shared roots. It could be easy in that sense.

After learning all this, I would be a baby in Ekiti (my "dialect," that is, my father's dialect) and likely Fulani (another major Nigerian language.) Meanwhile, the really long compund words in Edo languages make me want to crack that code, not to mention the langue-ing of the Efik-Ibibio languages - what's that about? Is there enough time in this life to learn that many languages?

t said...

Now I'm searching for Stella Monye (sang Oko Mi Ye: oko mi yeeee, duro ti mi ye o, duro ti mi ye o, lojo ale re. Ki o ma se gbagbe mi o to ba dara fun e...oko mi ye ye ye, oko mi ye), Christy Essien Igbokwe (sang Seun Rere: omo mi seun rere tire a dara o, omo mi gbo temi tire a dara o...) and it's not getting easier. But I will find and pick a song soon.

t said...

more searching - for "iya mi o, baba mi o, egbon mi o, aburo mi, omo dudu lo wu mi o, o ti n sufe pe mi ni'ta" which may or may not be by Yinka Davies. It would be a really apt accompaniment to this post, since it means "my mother, my father, ..., it's a dark kid that I want, infact he's calling (whistling?) for me outside right now."
No luck finding anything on this song, I don't even know if the title is "Omo dudu."

I may end up with Miriam Makeba, South African - not Nigerian - music, which was also prominent on Nigerian TV in the 90s. Much easier to find online.

It would be really fun to find the Jigida song, by Uche Ibeto. It was a dance along activity song for the whole family. Fun!

Funmi Adams did ahaiye yaro, which was a cool Hausa (or Fulani?) song, with the maiden and cowherd dancing games. Most artistes worked in multiple languages (besides Pidgin english and maybe the Queen's English, they'd also do more than one Nigerian Language. ) Remember Sonny Okosun? Evi Edna Ogholi?

The internet rocks, sha, because I can see other people's writing on their beloved songs. That's something.

Maybe rather than use some Naija music, I'll use the anthem, "by the Rivers of Babylon."

t said...

More on Nigerian music: The writer of this review of West African hip-hop sent me some music: "Oko mi ye" and "Seun Rere"
Isn't that sweet?
I'm enjoying listening so much.

Alex said...

In dire need of Stella Monye's ''Oko Mi Ye Duro Timi O''. Why's it so hard to get (buy) old 9ja classics?

t said...

It's getting better, Alex. The other day I was looking for old footage, a music video - Let Them Say - with King Sunny Ade and Queen Onyeka Onwenu.
"Ma da won lohun o, let them say o, jeje life na im we want // I no go lie o, I love you well well, make we try make life better // Sweet Sweet Life o, we .. together, nothing wey we no fit do ..."

Sadly couldn't find it, but another joint project - Wait For Me - was on youtube. But not the other popular one 'Choices' , on family planning.

sad :( too that Shina Peters' famous videos are not publicly available online - Ace , Shinamania...both were once.

Remember this song Fine Girls (them are too dangerous, fear them all) ? I keep trying to find it. At least I got some information about the performer, some guy named Mustapha Amego aka Funky Mallam, who passed away in 2013 . The little music video affects my life because I remember the dark short-haired lady with simple hoop earrings was very beautiful to me, such that nowadays I'm happy to be a black beauty, I don't feel a need to change to a Puerto Rican look or whatever, you know?

The thing to be thankful for is their messages and their flavour remain with us. And there is the new generation producing art every day too. For example I think of Loose Kaynon's Halleluyah (music video) as a successor to Fine Girls.
Some day, museums. Amen.

Pingaustin said...

I'm wondering if @t eventually found the song "Madawonlohun".
It's been a decade of relentless search for me too, but I'm happy to say that I found the song.
Not many people know it, whenever you search for Onyeka and Sunny Ade duet, only "Wait for Me" pops up.

Here's where I found "Madawolohun" :

I had to sign up to download for free, but it's worth it after all these years of searching.

Hope you enjoy the song.