Mike Eghan

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Mike Eghan
Born (1936-03-14) 14 March 1936 (age 85)
Sekondi-Takoradi, Gold Coast (present-day Ghana)
OccupationBroadcaster
Known forThe Mike Eghan Show
MC of Soul to Soul (1971)
Notable work
The "Emperor's" Story – From the Centre of the World (2019)

Mike Eghan (born 14 March 1936)[1] is a Ghanaian broadcaster, also known as "The Magnificent Emperor".[2] In a career as a disc jockey and radio presenter spanning six decades, Eghan hosted programmes for the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC) and for the BBC World Service in London. He was the master of ceremonies for the historic concert in Ghana Soul to Soul, which took place in Black Star Square in 1971 and showcased many prominent African-American artists alongside Ghanaian musicians.[3]

Eghan's autobiography, The "Emperor's" Story – From the Centre of the World, was published in 2019.[4] In the words of Anis Haffar: "The man's kaleidoscopic knowledge of show business, broadcasting, entertainment and politics is cast in the trenches of personal encounters. He shares history from the strategic standpoint of his own roles in the making of it."[5]

Background[edit]

Born in Sekondi-Takoradi, Gold Coast (present-day Ghana), the fifth of nine siblings, Eghan was inspired by his civil servant father Ben Eghan's passion for radio to join the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC) in 1961, after giving up a job with Barclays Bank that had been secured for him.[3][6][7]

In 1965 he went to Britain, where he worked with the BBC Africa Service, hosting the programme Music with African Beat for four years.[8] for some years. Photographs of Eghan taken during this time feature among the iconic work of veteran Ghanaian photographer James Barnor.[9][10] Leaving the BBC, Eghan returned home to work with GBC, wanting to contribute to the development of Ghana and raise his children there.[8]

He has said: "One of the highlights of my career as a disc jockey and radio presenter was my role as emcee (master of ceremony) for the historic musical concert dubbed 'Soul to Soul'. The aim of this musical extravaganza was to bring Africans and African-American artistes together to jam on the African continent to retrace their historical roots. It was believed that such an attempt would galvanise Black people all over the world along with the vision that Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah had for the Black Race."[3] High-profile soul, gospel and dance groups participated in Soul to Soul, which took place in Black Star Square (now Independence Square), including Wilson Pickett, Ike and Tina Turner, Les McCann, Eddie Harris, The Staple Singers, Carlos Santana, Roberta Flack, Willie Bobo, the Voices of East Harlem, and others.[3][11]

Eghan's popular 1970s talk show, The Mike Eghan Show, featured guests including Miriam Makeba, Ephraim Amu and Captain J. H. Tachie-Menson.[12] Eghan subsequently took employment as a Treatment Manager with the Volta River Authority, then had another stint of work in the UK with the BBC.[3] Back in Ghana, he resumed work with GBC, and later ran the Sundown Hotel.[3]

He launched his memoir, The "Emperor’s" Story – From the Centre of the World,[13] at the age of 83 in Accra in August 2019 at the University of Ghana's Institute of African Studies, the occasion presided over by Professor Esi Sutherland-Addy.[14][15]

Awards and recognition[edit]

A documentary film in honour of Eghan, produced by Andrew Gyawu-Mensah, was screened in March 2017.[16][17]

Eghan's awards include the Grand Medal in acknowledgement of his meritorious service in the media.[4][12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Eghan, Mike, 1936-". Library of Congress.
  2. ^ "The Story Of Mike Eghan, The Magnificent Emperor", Spectator, 14 July 2007. Via Ghana Base.
  3. ^ a b c d e f Kweku Antwi-Otoo, "Mike Eghan Launches The Emperor’s Story", 3news.com, via Modern Ghana, 28 August 2019.
  4. ^ a b "Veteran broadcaster Mike Eghan launches autobiography", My Joy Online, 29 August 2019.
  5. ^ Anis Haffar, "Celebrating Mike Eghan’s unforgettable memoirs", Graphic Online, 19 August 2019.
  6. ^ "Personality Chat with Ace Broadcaster Mike Eghan On Live Chat With Paul", etv Ghana, 2 September 2019.
  7. ^ Maureen Dedei Quaye, "Ace Broadcaster Mike Eghan's Transition from banking to Journalism", e.tv Ghana, 2 September 2019.
  8. ^ a b "'I Quit BBC Because Of My Son'", Ghana MMA, 11 March 2011.
  9. ^ "James Barnor | Mike Eghan at the BBC Studios, London1967, printed 2010", Tate.
  10. ^ Alexandra Genova, "Party time! The photographer who captured the other swinging sixties", The Guardian, 29 November 2019.
  11. ^ Arts Council of Ghana, Soul to Soul, Black Star Square, Accra, Ghana, 6th March, 1971 : with American and Ghanaian soul, gospel and dance groups, featuring Wilson Pickett (and others) : M.C., Mike Eghan, Accra: Moxon Paperbacks, 1971.
  12. ^ a b "Mike Eghan to relaunch talk show on ETV Ghana", Modern Ghana, 11 March 2011.
  13. ^ Mike Eghan: The Emperor's Story – From the Centre of the World. Accra: Enigma Images Limited. ISBN 978-9988-8273-6-6.
  14. ^ GNA, "Mike Eghan’s autobiography launched in Accra", Ghana Business News, 8 September 2019.
  15. ^ Joseph Kpormegbey; Desmond Kofi Tawiah (29 August 2019). "Mike Eghan's autobiography launched". Graphic.
  16. ^ Edward Blagogee, "Documentary on Mike Eghan unveiled", Today Online, 20 March 2017.
  17. ^ "My show is a replica of the Mike Eghan show – KSM", GhanaWeb, 27 March 2017.

External links[edit]