Ogbogu Okonji

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Ogbogu Okonji is a Nigerian Anioma popular traditional musician and the leader of the band Ogbogu Okonji and his Anioma Brothers. He is known in the Anioma music industry as OGB or The Message Man.

Biography[edit]

Ogbogu Okonji was born in Ogboli Quarters in Ibusa, Oshimili-North Local Government Area, Delta State, South-south, Nigeria. He began his professional career in music in Ibusa in 1979 but would later move to Lagos where he gained prominence. He is a self-taught musician who joined a traditional music group as a secondary school student, on completing his secondary education, he joined Customs and Excise Department which then was the vogue for the youths of Ibusa but would soon retire from the department to fully pursue a career in traditional music. He further described music as something that gives him joy and fulfillment. "I am happy when I make people happy," he also said.[1]

Ogbogu began his career by singing in a various musical groups called "Otu" in the local dialect of Ibusa in which he sang alongside notable musicians from Ibusa such as the famous Agility Okonji, and his first cousin, Etiti Okonji. Quite early in life, Ogbogu and Etiti lost their fathers (Egbuna and Amukaji Okonji)in a mystery circumstances after they were both alleged poisoned through food in 1967. After Ogbogu and Agility parted ways, he released some Albums with his cousin, Etiti as both musicians were united under one "Otu" (Dancing group) both would later part ways abandoning the "Otu" as they both pursued their individual careers in traditional music.

Ogbogu Okonji in a documentary televised by the African Independent Television (AIT) Tuesday, September 2, 2008 (10.00pm) stated that he began his musical career in 1978. Ogbogu has gained wider popularity among the various Anioma towns and in the southeast, and has particularly excelled in praise-singing for rich Anioma (Igbo) business tycoons. Almost every known business tycoon of Anioma extraction has been praised in his music.

He initially started with traditional Anioma or Ibusa style of music using traditional musical instruments such as Udu, Uboma, Agogo, Akpele, Isaka but in 1991 shifted to Ekobe-highlife fusion, which is now a style of his music. Ogbogu's style of music has been quite informative as it exposes the ills and abominations in the Anioma society thus his nickname name, "The Message Man." Ogbogu told a gathering that "he was tired of being a big fish in a small pond and that now was the time for him to swim in the mighty ocean, stressing that he had got all the experience , skill and agility to swim in the ocean without sinking[2] He would also tell Q Club, Lagos that "I am tired of being a local champion; though I'm known by people who have supported and keep supporting my musical career, I want to be known beyond my area , that is why I have come to you people whom God has given the power to make people popular ,"

Ogbogu described his greatest challenge as securing a viable label that will release, market and distribute his works, he admittedly said he was unlucky in this area thus a major reason he still remains unknown in the Nigerian music world.

Discography[edit]

  • Egusi Special
  • Apapa (Groundnut)
  • Alusi-Ego
  • Eje-Ana
  • Ekene
  • Ekene II
  • Ndi-Eze
  • Wayo Pastors
  • Ndi-Uka
  • Dutchess Club
  • Onicha-Uku
  • Adam and Eve
  • Obi Oma Special
  • Mbodo
  • Chukwu Bu Eze
  • Kenenu Igbuzo
  • Enu Soba Uso
  • Onye Aga
  • Anioma
  • Obiageli-Aku
  • Ndudi Elumelu
  • Louis Ndukwe
  • Onwa Welcome
  • Chukwu Bu Eze
  • Chiedu Chichi (Obute Ohusi)
  • Chukwudumebi
  • Chukwudifu Awolo
  • Onyeze
  • Apapa (Groundnut)
  • Ose (Peper)
  • Fred Onyeoma
  • Princess
  • Ije Enu
  • Ego Bia
  • Egwu Elue
  • Asaba/Ogwashi-Uku
  • Oyi Negbuoyi
  • Ka Nwulu Ashu
  • Onwu-Iwe
  • Love
  • Nwanneka Oraegbu
  • Ekpele
  • Olime
  • Telibe Egwu
  • daudu Ojoko
  • Uwadinachi
  • Late Albert Okonkwo
  • Okwu Ogoli
  • Ogo

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Ugbogu Swims in Bigger Waters". Thisday. 21 September 2008. Retrieved 2009-09-15.
  2. ^ Daily Independent, 10 September 2008

External links[edit]