Saturday, August 11, 2012

Not a Nigerian Scam: Chief Commander Ebenezer Obey

Chief Commander Ebenezer Obey and His Inter-Reformers Band.

As Deepak Chopra says, let that sink into the deepest corners of your consciousness.

What a name! What a sound!

The Chief Commander, as suits a man with a larger than life name, increased the participation rates in juju bands significantly.  His bands were large, often up to 20 people picking and drumming away, often as seemingly uncoordinated and chaotic as a Lagos rush hour in the rain. Talking drums, rhythm sticks, police whistles with guitars sliding and tweeting in and out of everything.  It can take some effort but focus helps to appreciate this music.  There are simply so many sounds and textures and beats happening at any given moment it is a challenge to find the golden thread that holds it altogether.  But it is there and it is Chief Commander’s liquid guitar runs.  Lightening quick. Barely visible. Building into a massive storm front.

The Chief of Juju music is someone who not only has an outsized sense of Self but a man who made his name massaging the egos of the rich and famous Nigerian set. He is also a true disciple of the Lord the most ultimate of all Chiefs and never misses a chance to sing praise to Jesus.

Intoxicating. Hypnotic. Complex. Rich.  This live concert album from 1989 is all of these things.

            Track Listing:
01.  Ose Olorum Oba
02.  Sisi Ba Millionaire Lo
03.  Ile Ti Ya
04.  Koseni Tomo Ojo Ola
05.  To Ba Je Tere
06.  Erawa Oloyon Momo
07.  Awa Eve Iwoyi
08.  What God Has Joined Together
09.  E Ma Se Lo-Finale


Goofy said...

Your description of Ebenezer's music is pretty accurate. In case you are new to Juju, check King Sunny Ade also. Another fascinating Nigerian music "genre" is Fuji. It is more percussion driven. As for the great name, the Nigerian goups/ artists often have pompous names; General this, Commander that. King Sunny Ade is King because he IS royalty.
Anyway, thanks for this Ebenezer album.

sjaak said...

thanks for this great music.from holland

ajnabi said...

u r welcome my friend.