Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Jùjú music

Jùjú is a style of Nigerian popular music, derived from traditional Yoruba percussion. The name comes from a Yoruba word "juju" or "jiju" meaning "throwing" or "something being thrown." Juju music did not derive its name from juju, which "is a form of magic and the use of magic objects or witchcraft common in West Africa, Haiti, Cuba and other South American nations." It evolved in the 1920s in urban clubs across the countries, and was believed to have been created by AbdulRafiu Babatunde King, popularly known as Tunde King. The first jùjú recordings were by Tunde King and Ojoge Daniel from the same era of the 1920s when Tunde King pioneered it. The lead and predominant instrument of Jùjú is the Iya Ilu,"' talking drum. Some Jùjú musicians were itinerant, including early pioneers Ojoge Daniel, Irewole Denge and the "blind minstrel" Kokoro.

Afro-juju is a style of Nigerian popular music, a mixture of Jùjú music and Afrobeat. Its most famous exponent was Shina Peters, who was so popular that the press called the phenomenon "Shinamania". Afro-juju's peak of popularity came in the early 1990s.

Following World War II, electric instruments began to be included, and pioneering musicians like Earnest Olatunde Thomas (Tunde Nightingale), Fatai Rolling Dollar, I. K. Dairo, Dele Ojo, Ayinde Bakare, Adeolu Akinsanya, King Sunny Adé, and Ebenezer Obey made the genre the most popular in Nigeria, incorporating new influences like funk, reggae and Afrobeat and creating new subgenres like yo-pop. Some new generation juju artistes include Oludare Olateju and Bola Abimbola. Although Juju music, like apala, sakara, fuji, and waka was created by Muslim Yoruba (NOTE: Tunde King was a Muslim and an alhaji until his death in the 1980s); however, the music itself remains secular. King Sunny Adé was the first to include the pedal steel guitar, which had previously been used only in Hawaiian music and American country music.

King Sunny Ade - Mount Sinai
"King" Sunny Adé (born Sunday Adeniyi, September 22, 1946) is a popular performer of Yoruba Nigerian jùjú music and a pioneer of modern world music. He has been classed as one of the most influential musicians of all time.

Sunny Adé's music is characterised by, among other instruments, the talking drum - an instrument indigenous to his Yoruba roots, the guitar and his peculiar application to jùjú music, that would easily put him in the same class as guitar musicians like Santana. His music is in the age-old tradition of singing poetic lyrics ("ewi" in Yoruba) and praise of dignitaries as well components of Juju (traditional African belief) called the Ogede (casting a spell). Hence, Adé's music constitutes a record of the oral tradition of his people for posterity.

Sunny Adé was the first to introduce the pedal steel guitar to Nigerian pop music. He was the first to introduce the use of synthesizers, clavinet, vibraphone, tenor guitar into the jùjú music repertoire such as dub and wah-wah guitar licks.

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