by: michael eli dokosi/blakkpepper.com/ghana
Most musicians and especially those of the hiplife fraternity tend to be brash and daring in their first singles and even on the whole album.
In a cluttered market, they must make noise to be heard and it perhaps explains why they throw challenges. For some, their first commercial music remains priceless and secures them occupancy in the music realm.
Obrafuor’s ‘Pae Mu Ka’, and Tinny’s ‘Makola Kwakwei’ can be mentioned so can Obour’s ‘Atentenben’ album and track bearing the same be cited.
//Light a spliff y’all
Should a road obstacle be present, shall traverse it with speed
Should it be a nut, would pound it ‘pim pim’
Should it be fufuo, shall swallow it ‘tim tim’
When cold, better sleep before the cold overbears you
Chorus: I am fearsome, Obour I am fearsome
Able to roll a stretch of road like mat
Vocal delivery breaks down buildings, if in doubt you can bear witness
Hurry and witness my deeds as if they were on a mirror
Even when shot at, shall bend the bullet
Can use the teeth to chew glass
Can even dance ‘Adowa’ using bare bottoms
Never snores lest sleep dominates me
When Lucifer is engaged for a game of ‘dami’, overwhelms him just as I overpower him in a game of ‘ludo’
Whiles others have difficulties being porters of heavy load, I use one hand to lift loads
I run on slippery slopes
Beverage which dazes many, I drink and stand strong
Spliffs which make folks to flounder, I smoke 16 rolls with ease
Not short yet not tall
Not a noise maker yet not an introvert
Rivers serve as my mirror
Taken on hundreds of men yet haven’t tasted defeat
Without wings yet flies as a hawk
Chorus: upon hearing my deeds, you must be petrified
Surprised? I chew iron roads with my teeth
Can grind you into flour
Have laid so a truck loaded with cement can pass over me without being killed or torn
What folks can’t do in the day, I perform at the break of dawn//
Obour was so spectacular in his audio delivery and flawless in the video that it became a matter of debate as to if indeed Bice Osei Kufuor could chew glass, cart away a fully loaded truck with his bare hands or indeed sprout from the earth as the video suggested. Little wonder then that ‘Atentenben‘ won three awards for Soul Records at the Ghana Music Awards in 2002 including Video of the year.
Obour was gingerly as he was fit and his lean frame aided his jumping and running. But in life except all other things being equal we don’t always have our way and so it is that a once fit ‘broda’ is today mocked for his plump frame especially his belly.
When one is tasked with a busy life style, health can suffer and in the MUSIGA president’s case, a charitable match in Kumasi pushed forward the need to engage in a series of action to regain fitness especially when the jersey could barely contain the bulge Obour had. Stunned observers and acrimonious ones took the chance to impugn wastefulness of the MUSIGA purse.
Thankfully, the ‘Dekyemenso’ native heeded wise counsel and has begun a program to shed some weight and already about 10 kg have been burnt although more work lies ahead.
While food surely can lead to increase and decrease of weight when not consumed in a balanced way, late night eating is the true culprit as the body has little time to work on the ingested particles before sleep leading to bloated tummies of which the president of the Musicians Union of Ghana got exposed by so wickedly.
Certain folks can be plump yet catching a glimpse of them is not displeasing to the eye. Such folks including Hammer and Zap Mallet although are fleshy have the advantage of height so counter the unpleasant sight of being fat and short. Obour lacks a few inches in height and explains why although there are other potbellied media folks like Henry Harding aka Papa Nii and Psalm Adjeteyfio he was fingered for special lambasting.
Thankfully Ben Asare, a fitness instructor whom Obour is working with seems keen to ensure the musician is delivered of his load in the midsection. Weighing 113kg some months before the media onslaught, the ‘Mesu Daiye’ hitmaker strives to reach the 70 kilos mark thanks to much exercise, good sleep, healthy eating involving soups, oatmeal, fruits and vegetables.
“I made a firm decision to do it for those who care about me, as a leader, I needed to do it. I had started snoring and could not play football as I used to do in the past so I realized I needed to do something about my weight,’’ he said.
Months into the lifestyle change Obour conceded: “ I can now fit comfortably in my clothes and the feeling is just great. No more tight fitting attires. And my tummy has gone down too.”
Seeking a second term for any president is never easy and such is the fate which faces the MUSIGA president who wants the music family to elect him again to complete his projects but who faces stiff competition from good old Gyedu-Blay Ambolley whom he beat last time around but has continuously heaped hot coal on the ‘Kokontiba’ musician.
For Ambolley, Akosua Adjapong and likeminded folks, Obour’s divide and rule tactics cannot be countenanced and must be booted out but the University of Ghana alumnus is not one to be cowered.
His sheer victory bringing him to power astonished many who wrote him off considering the opposition he faced (Gyedu Blay Ambolley, Nana Tuffour, Willie Roy) and it appears the ‘Stone’ remains resolute in the face of adversity.
On why he deserves a second term as a MUSIGA president, the social campaigner states that he has brought goodwill to the MUSIGA brand, put in structures to address disputes and internal affairs, sought the financial welfare of members, organized the MUSIGA ball, given young musicians the chance to shine at administrative work while tapping into the wisdom and experience of the elderly.
The Adwinfi and Family Tree Entertainment label boss is not averse to adversity but one who embraces it and forges on. On December28, 2003 a near death accident for Obour which claimed the life of his then girlfriend at Lartebiokoshie could have ended his thriving career but Obour rose to the challenge shooting a record breaking video ‘Men Wu Biom’ estimated to have cost 32m cedis in 2004 chronicling his victory over death.
And in similar fashion, Bice Osei Kufour; Ghana’s music export, the poet and inventor of heart pumping stage performances must not be allowed to waste in ‘Obeseland’, he ought to be encouraged by all music lovers to continue to write music and perform them to keep the body in action whether he wins the MUSIGA bid for the second time or not.
His albums include Atentenben, Akademua, Dondo and Atumpan. The first recipient of the World Bank Music for Development Award has churned out classics including Palm Wine, Konkontiba, Atentenben, Me Su Dayie, Nana Obour and sounds done with highlife icon A.B Crentsil.