OS E-Magazines: August Edition COLUMN 1
his Black face Band
And his palongo music concept
Oluseyi Solagbade is a Nigeria born artiste with an extraordinary versatility.
He is a renowned musician whose experience in the originality of diffrent genre of music in West African music gave birth to authentic futuristic music. His music has been making powerful impact both home and abroad. He started his musical career from the church as a soloist in early 80’s. He is an icon of repute .
Seyi Solagbade who has come to define himself as the hallmark of Professionalism, Proficiency, Commitment and above all, Originality in the Nigerian music scene. The brand of music offered by his band BLACK FACE is (Palongo Music as a concept) Afro rhythm. The band is of horns and percussions closely knitted together by socially relevant lyrics.
What the senses encounter with this is a synthesis cuts across world music cultures with something in it for everybody. A major Nigerian Art critic once commented that the band plays a rewardingly boisterous rhythmic pattern tending towards a fusion of Highlife, Juju, Jazz and other varied forms. What the eyes behold in this band is a rich performance partly given life by the dexterous dance movements of the back-up singers and dancers.
Seyi Solagbade, the leader of the band cuts a combination of the rough and tough aero-smithian rock character with the smooth and romantic mien of a ballader. The critic says of him he is mean and soft, tough and smooth, non-descript and the Futuristic Nigerian Artiste with over 30 years experience as a professional musician. So much authenticity to show for it. MATUWO 1996 from his first band, FORTIFIED SPIRITUAL to the present THE BLACK FACE BAND. The albums BLACK FACE 1999, NO KING AS GOD 2010, BAMIJO (DANCE WITH ME) 2012, RETURN TO GOD A VIDEO 2014-15
The band on stage is different from anything you have seen before. At every performance, there is always something new to watch out for.
This is a band that has survived the overwhelming and stifling environment of the Nigerian music industry with.
a promise of better tomorrow.
Concerts in different part of Nigeria and other West African Countries. Command performance/ Music coordinator for CORA. committee for relevant art (s) of Annual Lagos Book and Art Festival 2001 till date. Centres major events which includes the World Music Day from 2001 till date with French cultural center Lagos. West Africa tour by French Cultural Centre Lagos initiative (2004-05). The Goeth Institutes has witnessed the creative innate talent of Seyi Solagbade as different occasion (2001-2007 ).
Seyi Solagbade did the command performance in the Nigeria Breweries at Enugu for the presidency, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo which was a grand performance. Also for the Nigerian film festivals in 2003.
Seyis connection to his root as a typical “Egba Boy” whose craving for cultural identity and passion for his origin has placed him prominently in the heart of the amiable ex-Gov. Gbenga Daniel since year 2004 performing consistently the states annual functions and also as music agent for the state still 2011. Outside the shore of Nigeria, Seyis innate stage dexterity has been witnessed in major countries around the world, Italy tour initiative by TORINO PUNTIVERDA/CITTADI TORINO/TST and AFROFESTIVAL ASSOCIATION.(Rhythm and voice from Africa 2006.citys:- Torino, Padoval, Napoli, Rome, Trestel )UK tour 2008 initiative by CAGO LIVERPOOL street LONDON.CORA Award 2005 in South Africa. Rep. Of Benin 2005,2008,2014,2015 (Ensemble centre le traffic) EQUATORIAL GUINEA initiative by CENTRO CULTURAL ESPANOL MALABO 2008.United State of America tour perform in over 6 state 2011-2012. His dexterity musically was well in displayed at African Cultural Day, Ghana 2016. He also gave a good account of himself in various Christian music festivals home and abroad such as, LULI, HAMOSHIA in 2016.
At the well-hyped AFRIMA, a globally recognized reward for excellence, the enigma of our time, Oluseyi performed alongside notable artistes in Nigeria, such Femi Kuti, Tuface Idibia, Ras Kimono. The Kunle Afolayans Culturecentric Monthly Gig at the Airport Hotel, Ikeja area of Lagos as star performer to mention but a few
A ten peace band that is consist of HORNS, PERCUSSION, RHYTHM SECTION and BACK UP VOCAL.
The horns section:- a tenor saxophonist ,a trumpeters, and a trombonist while Seyi play the alto saxophone.
Percussive Section:- Is made up of the set drummer, the congeries, and traditional talking drummer. The talking drummer as another 3 drums (dundun ensemble), which are played as the track demand. This section provides the varied and rich. African Rhythm that is then infused into western instrumentation.
Rhythm Section:- Here, we have the keyboardist, the rhythm guitarist, and the bass guitarist.
A Vigorous Singer/Dancer:- She is practically trained in the band. Her dance steps explain and interpret the aggressive nature of the music, PALONGO. You will not fail to notice the vibrant sense of creative imagination behind each of their every move. They are a spectacle! They make use of the whole body instead of laying the whole emphasis on the buttocks. Apart from singing and dancing, the delectable young ladies also do native chants; on modes with other western instrumentations in progress. Seyi has been able to infused unconventional with conventional in his music which include doing the unexpected. Being a Nigerian, combing most genres of Nigeria popular music, most of which cannot be performed with some Western instrumentation, and if performed puts them in another category e.g. Juju music (King Sunny Ade), Apala (Haruna Isola), Fuji music, and Highlife. Most of the pioneer of this music are International Artistes who are recognized, and highly respected. So, my experiment is fusing these genres in new coat. The listener perceives the rhymes of these popular genres but the instrumentation most of which are in minor(s) (harmonic, melodies, or natural) and mode(s).
The stage performance: is a different thing entirely aside all technical aspects evident, the improvisation for all aspects of the music is conspicuously impressive. At every performance. Theres always something new to watch out for.
TOP 3 SONGS OF THE WEEK ON OS WORLD1 PLAYLIST
No.1- Boundless Love by Pastor Isaac Adigun
Boundless Love by Pastor Isaac Adigun is a powerful and inspiring track that teaches us how much God Loves us and Cherishes us.
About Pastor Isaac Adigun
Gospel music minister, worship leader, preacher of God’s word and songwriter, Isaac Adigun has being in the music industry for 15years.
He is a sought after minister in praise concert program and youth gathering.
His recent single titled ‘My Defender’ is a powerful confession track which was inspired by God.
He has two albums to his credit and several inspiring singles among which is ‘Divine Overflow’, a prohetic song. He is a registered member of GOMAN in Osun State.
He is happily married and blessed with children.
No.2-Tani ? – Jola Strings ft Pastor Isaac Adigun
TA NI? is a new debut single and dedication song by Jola Strings featuring Pastor Isaac Adigun .
It is a clarion call and allegiance to serve God and follow Jesus anywhere,any time and under any condition.
Listen and download here:
Idemija – Seyi Solagbade
COLLECTION OF POEMS
SEXUAL ASSAULT/RAPE AND THE RIGORS OF THE NIGERIAN JUSTICE SYSTEM
By. Pelumi Olajengbesi Esq.
It is rewarding to note that there have recently been various conversations of ways in which being a victim of sexual violence is synonymous with experiencing multiple forms of victimisation and re-victimisation. These conversations are a recognition of ways in which victims of sexual assault or rape are re-traumatised by the rigors of criminal justice systems world over while searching for justice. The search for justice usually involves contact with state actors like the police, public prosecutors and the courts, many of whom are staffed by personnel who more often than not lack the delicate skill and empathy needed to deal with rape victims in their search for justice.
While contacts with informal networks such as the media and the general public especially with regards to constantly speaking up in responses to allegations that a victim’s story is false, all add adverse nuances that tests the resolve of the most resolute victim hoping for justice, it is the courts but especially the Police Force in Nigeria who are rightly at the brunt of public criticism for failing to objectively investigate, prosecute and adjudicate rape allegations.
The Nigerian rape or sexual assault narrative is habitually one with its victim or survivor coming up against not just the accused within the framework of a difficult justice system but also one which pitches them against a set of cultural norms with certain prejudices against the victim. Those cultural norms, some of which shifts blame to the victim, have infiltrated the justice system, and influences outcomes much more than is often talked about. As a result, all over the country, sexual violence is employed as a weapon of demoralization against the victims and their relatives.
The demoralization begins with the crime itself which is a violent invasion and the commandeering of a victim’s body and virtue to vehement assertions that such experiences are made up, self-caused or even desired. The prosecuting police force (rape is a crime and as such within the purview of state prosecution through the police) and judge are inured to this false perceptions, and abetted by a substantively deficient legal system, constitute the re-traumatisation agents for sexual assault victims in their search for justice.
What, however, is “justice” to a rape or sexual assault victim? Conventionally, justice in this instance is a linear conceptualisation of state-run retributive systems premised on a set of formal legality from the incidence to police investigation, prosecution, judgement and punishment. Justice here is dichotomous- one either gets it or doesn’t, and more often than not, the victims do not have a say in defining what shape punitive justice should take. While the rule of evidence rules the day in our courts, and in the context of rape often depends on the recollection of the victim corroborated by other witness statement(s), and the strength of the investigation undertaken by the state through the police, the prosecution still has the onerous burden of proving said crime beyond all reasonable doubts.
The very nature of rape or sexual assault, however, means that it occurs mostly in private with the victim as the only witness, and although the Evidence Act makes provisions that conviction can be secured on the account of a single witness, there are very few, if any, cases of a conviction secured on account of a sole testimony. Thus while there is an exception to the general rule that rape allegations must be corroborated by other witness statements, the general rule remains the popular rule. It is therefore not easy for complainants of rape matters to prove their cases in court given the need for corroborative evidence.
There are, of course, certain elements of rape that need to be proven to establish a solid case of rape in our courts. This, simplified, include establishing , a. that there was penetrative sexual intercourse, b. that a. occurred without the consent of the victim or under duress or intoxication, b. and, that the accused is the culprit of said act. Again, as highlighted above, these elements are established through a body of evidence that includes the victims narrative and the corroboration of same through witness statements or a medical report. A medical report in this context is a rape kit administered on a victim within hours or moments of the incidence. This helps place injuries, bruises and DNA evidences from hair follicles, blood samples or residual sperm left by a rapist.
In way too many instances of rape in Nigeria, however, there is usually little or no knowledge of the medical kit procedure, and disclosures (the victim’s revelation of the rape ordeal to family, friends or colleagues) do not happen in time and when it does, physical evidence such as vaginal or anal bruises, and or residual sperm evidence are often already lost thus centring proof of the case on the credibility of the victim’s words against the accused. Given rape victims are trapped in the general rule of law that; he who asserts must proof, and that rape being a crime requires proof beyond reasonable doubt, a strict adherence to the rigors of general criminal procedures has obstructed the cause of justice for many rape victims.
There is also the less considered concern that holding a rape trial in open court where other matters draws in a crowd of lawyers, clients, media persons and observers adversely affects a victim’s composure. Rape is such a deeply psychological crime that it is deserving of a special procedure involving merely the courts officials, counsels and parties to the suit. During cross-examination, and even examinations-in-chief, victims would have to withstand a thorough examination of the details of their ordeal, and such a moment is trying and difficult especially with a curious crowd of onlookers in court who have no concern in the matter.
On the probability of attaining justice in a rape case, there is another concern that needs addressing. Our police stations lack special rape units and the implication of this is that unskilled officers are usually saddled with unravelling rape stories. Victims have had to rely on this officers to face off against arduous court processes. Also, and too often, the prejudices of an investigating or prosecuting attorney of the state manifested through a lack lustre representation works to effectively defeat all hope for justice. Besides the drama of court rigors, is the peculiar happenstances of victims receiving thinly veiled threats from the accused or unknown persons while suffering the indignity of media ridicule. Whereas the courts have a duty to pronounce injunctions attended by severe sanctions against such pressures, the police equally have a duty to protect the victims from such harassment.
The near impossibility of securing convictions, poor and ridiculous experiences in legal proceedings or requirements conspire to work against victims’ reprieve or sense of comeuppance against their rapist. Our criminal administration system in Nigeria wastes so much time that victims get tired of the litigation and abandon the case. On the other hand, many exhibits get damaged as a result of delays in proceedings thereby preventing the victim’s access to justice.
A system that gives preferential treatment to the accused in matters as unique as rape, without prejudice to the presumption of innocence, is ill-prepared for the hard questions and actions that a crime with a personal and psychological effect on its victims poses. Key to rejigging the whole Nigerian justice system, again without prejudice to the accused’s right of presumed innocence, is identifying what justice means to rape victims and what aspects victims find crucial in the criminal justice procedure – from the framing of legal addresses to the gathering of a body of evidence.
Our courts have to be more alive to letting substantial suits proceed on the merit of its subject matter rather than have same buried by the defence under an avalanche of technicalities. It is my understanding that procedures are there to guide or aid along the course of justice and not thwart same. The presumption of innocence is unaffected by a proper trial, and as such, rape matters should be allowed to continue on its merit and not be subdued by technicalities in the justice system.
Away from the courts and its system, there are cultural misconceptions entrenched in stereotypes throughout the Nigerian society about victims/survivors who are mostly women, that they lie about these experiences for sympathy or to simply scorn or subject their alleged abusers to ridicule, and also that women are partly responsible for their own victimization, infiltrates the justice system. Historically, the barriers to reporting crimes of rape and sexual assault have included personal shame, concern for privacy, distrust of criminal justice proceedings and fear of perpetrator retaliation. Though this is a universal phenomenon, the social conservatism and prejudice against rape victimisation in Nigeria is strong enough to inhibit survivors from reporting in order to avoid social scorn and cynicism. Together, these aspects pose a unique set of challenges to the traditional/conventional processing of cases.
A case for unique reforms must continue to be made for there to be progress in the successful prosecution of rape cases thus. The state has a duty to educate young men and women on ways to protect selves from sexual assault or rape, and also create adequate awareness on what immediate actions must be taken when rape or related incidences occur. This way, evidence is preserved for use in prosecution. The Nigerian courts must also consider trying rape matters in a specially constituted court, perhaps a Family Court, with specially trained personnel of court in attendance, while further considering stiffer penalties for rape convicts. In like manner, there is the urgent need for a special department within the Nigeria Police Force with the requisite training to undertake the investigation and prosecution of rape matters.
It would be remiss not to conclude by encouraging victims of rape to find their voice and strength in the emerging community of survivors who are going up against their villains, even as we continue to challenge the social stigma from uninformed or deliberately cruel members of the public.
Pelumi Olajengbesi Esq., is a Public Interests Lawyer and the Principal Partner at Pelumi Olajengbesi & Co. Law Corridor.