One of my favourite Ghanaian musicians is a man many pundits refer to as ‘the Michael Jackson of Ghana’. He has close to 30 albums to his credit and his contribution to highlife is very phenomenal. His albums have yielded more number one and top ten hits than any other Ghanaian musician.
He is on record as the first musician to be honoured by Imajin Advertising as a living legend at the Legends and Legacy Ball, which has now become an annual event. The musician I refer to is no other than Charles Kwadwo Fosu, aka Daddy Lumba (DL).
My all-time favourite among his songs is ‘Aben wo ha’. I vividly remember the hullabaloo the song generated when it was released somewhere around 2000. Ironically, the so-called profane song helped him win about five awards at the Ghana Music Awards (GMA) that year.
The latest song coming from Daddy Lumba’s stable is ‘Yentie obiaa’, to wit ‘We shall not be bothered by other people’s utterances’. The song has currently hijacked the airwaves and can be heard in every nook and cranny of this country. It’s also being used as ringing tone by me and many of compatriots. Barring any machinations, it’s the song to beat in the Song of the Year category in the next episode of the GMA.
Many people have fallen in love with the song, and Yours truly is no exception. It must however be stated that our appreciation of the song can be evaluated from different perspectives. While some of us understand the song to be a response to busybodies who want to poke their noses in people’s personal affairs, others have misconstrued it to mean rubbishing rational and constructive criticisms. However one looks at it, the value is the same.
The Great Osono’s former General Secretary, Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie aka Sir John has never hidden his admiration for the song. Yentie obiaa was his theme during the recent rigorous contest for the General Secretary position which he lost. On his first visit to the party’s national headquarters a few days after the loss, the only song that could be heard blaring from the speaker of his vehicle was Yentie obiaa.
The Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) is also a great admirer of the song. Amidst the recurring ‘dumso-dumso’ and the cries of the masses for the ECG to improve upon its efficiencies and deliver a better service, one can hear the ECG gleefully singing Yentie obiaa. They are not bothered by the cries of their consumers.
The ECG’s response to the appeal to make the World Cup period ‘dumso-free’ is not only curious, but comical as well. They say ‘dumso-free’ World Cup would only be possible if consumers switched off gadgets like freezers and air-conditioners. Knowing full well that we have no way of checking, they would simply come out later to say the consumers did not heed their advice so ‘dumso’ continues unabated- just another way of saying Yentie obiaa.
By their sayings and deeds, one cannot be far from right if one says the Mahama-led government is a true believer in the song. Despite the public uproar that greeted the intended sale of a local bank to their cronies at a giveaway price, the government went ahead with the smelly transaction.
Some government appointees continue to engage in shady deals with very dubious companies, while others brazenly plunder state resources in the name of bridging the gap between the North and the South.
With the sad and stinky SADA saga and the ‘create, loot and share’ stories making rounds, I know you don’t need any more examples to believe me.
During his recent working visit to the Ashanti Region, the tone of His Excellency John Dramani Mahama, his language, utterances and the song he chose left some feathers ruffled in the region. The song, Yentie obiaa, blared through huge speakers mounted on a vehicle that followed the President wherever he visited, as party officials and supporters danced in a very choreographed manner. The President also gleefully danced to the song with his version of the azonto dance.
Joseph Yamin, the Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports, has taken a leaf from the President’s book. He had verbal diarrhoea on radio and when told to retract his divisive statement, he decided to sing his version of the song.
Without a doubt, Yentie obiaa has become the theme of the moment. I’m very enthused because of one thing. Though one can decide to use the Yentie obiaa theory, the person may end up laughing at the wrong side of his mouth. The Hen dances beautifully to the Yentie obiaa tune, but that does not stop the Hawk from pouncing on its children.
So Mr. President and his ilk can continue singing and dancing their versions of the Yentie obiaa song and azonto respectively. We shall also sing and dance our versions of the song and dance on December 7, 2016. So sing on, Mr. President.
See you next week for another interesting konkonsa, Deo volente!