Ghanaian band, Kyekyeku & Ghanalogue, thrilled a crowd in Etnosur, Spain, where they had gone to perform at the Vis a Vis festival.
At a busy square in the Spanish town, foreign hosts responded cheerfully to the band’s highlife genre, dancing to the inviting beats of otherwise, unfamiliar songs.
The band’s songs paid homage to highlife greats such as Nana Ampadu, J. A Adofo and Alex Konadu whose distinctly Ghanaian songs explored themes on the ups and downs in life, love and religion.
They played a 1972 folk song “Robert Mensah, Ghana’s Goalkeeper No.1” which told the story of how Ghana’s famous goalkeeper lost his life after he was stabbed at a drinking bar. The song condemned drinking.
Kyekyeku, a member of the band, told Hitz FM in an interview after the program, said it made little sense to leave Ghana to another country only to play foreign songs when there is rich Ghanaian heritage waiting for rediscovery and repackaging.
The band decided to relive the golden days of old, and repackage them for Ghanaians and hopefully, a global audience, he explained.
He said effort must be made to re-do several of Ghana’s forgotten highlife songs to allow the current generation to better appreciate the country’s musical heritage.
“It’s strange that kids nowadays are singing something strange” he expressed worry about how the country’s music fraternity was losing out on its own history.
He noted that it does not make any logical sense to leave the rich Ghanaian culture and promote something foreign.
Kyekyeku added the idea behind their music is to research about what Ghana has, what it has lost and try to rekindle it.
Advising up and coming music talents and enthusiasts, he said like the band, the motivation should not be about money or fame but good quality music. The benefits would follow, he explained.
The band expressed gratitude to the Creative Arts Council, the Spanish Ambassador and also the organizers of the festival, Casa Africa for supporting highlife music.