Entertainment of Friday, 16 January 2015
Veteran highlife artiste, Lee Dodou was on Happy FM’s ShowBiz Xtra with Dr Cann to talk about his long career in music and life in the diaspora.
The 62-year-old highlifer talking about taking care of himself and looking young revealed;
“I exercise a lot, I don’t drink but I smoke and it’s good for me. Many people smoke and even my father smoked and still lived till 90 years. I’m not saying everyone should go and smoke but it works for me. And I’m not talking about any other smoke, I’m referring to cigarettes.”
On why he smoked, the Akwankwa hitmaker revealed:
“During our time, I kept reading magazine and there was this group called Smokey Boys including Joe Coker, and I understand that he was an alcoholic, and many of the best singers of that time were either smoking or drinking but they train after doing this. And it gave them a unique voice.”
As one of the pioneers of Burger Highlife, it was shocking the singer said he wouldn’t allow his children to dabble their hands into music because it never made him rich.
“I wouldn’t want my children to pursue music because I haven’t benefitted in music. It didn’t make me rich.”
In answering Dr Cann’s question on why he never got rich singing all the classics, the Kantata Band leader alleged:
“Maybe it would have been better if I had not had my problems with the people I worked with during my peak.
“Because I had my moment – My breakthrough came but George Darko cut it short. I went through things so painful I don’t even want to talk about it. Even to the extent my life was threatened. And that’s one of the main reasons why I didn’t want to come to Ghana anymore.
“I was nearly even murdered in the 80’s. If you remember, there was a story about Lee Dodou and Kantata Band in 89 and we lost one of our guys mysteriously. It was catastrophic.
The Akpeteshie singer also revealed he was once in the same group with George Darko but after the group broke up, George Darko started picking on him because he was behind a lot of their creative works and so George felt threatened by his presence in the music scene.
“I was doing a lot of the singing too during our time in the group George Darko and the Bus Stop but because he was leader of the group, he took all the glory and he wanted it to stay like that. So he wanted me dead.
“When we made Akoo Te Brofo for instance; we were seven guys. George [Darko], Me, Sometimer, Jagger, Akoo, Bob Fishian, Stephen Mends. And it was George Darko who sang it. I brought that idea because at that time it was Cool and the Gang era with James Taylor as the singer.
But George Cool was the leader of the band and it was me who brought that idea that we should go the Cool and The Gang way and so we did George Darko and the Bus Stop. And when the problems started I didn’t leave the group, it was George Darko who left and everyone followed. So I didn’t understand why I became the target. So why George targeted me out of all the group is something I still wonder about.”
Listen to Lee Dodou’s ‘Akwankwa’ below: