Rap on the Knuckles
Windhoek – Namibian music promoters and organisers have raised the ire of artistes for using their names without consent.
Organisers have been accused of using renowned and award-winning artistes in a bid to promote their shows.
Reggae outfit, Omidi d'Afrique recently revealed to the The Southern Times that the band has fallen victim to this ploy several times, the latest being a Ras Sheehama show pencilled for this month end.
According to Omidi d'Afrique band member Farri Dread Haukongo, “There are currently rumours circulating on radio and social media that we will be performing with Ras Sheehama and his crew at the Warehouse Theatre towards end of July, I just want to clear this statement. We won’t be performing with him; we will be hosting our show in August.”
Haukongo has dispelled the rumour saying there has not been any prior discussion on the band’s participation. He has also revealed that he receives complaints from people all the time that Omidi d'Afrique never pitches up at shows they are invited to.
He, however, absolves the group of any blame saying, “But it’s not our fault, as the message is never communicated to us. It’s actually the organiser’s fault because we are always together as brothers but they don’t tell us anything. Instead they go on air and tell the listeners that we are performing while we are not, which makes us look bad at the end of the day”.
Haukongo has called on organisers to desist from the habit as it tarnishes the band’s name. “We don’t want people to think that we are not serious, while we are. For us, reggae is a mission and a reflection of what is happening in society. We come up with the best lyrics to spread the message of Jah to our people,” he says
Omidi d'Afrique is a five-men band with Farri Dread Haukongo on lead guitar and vocals, Eric Hamutenya on rhythm guitar, Gisho Gisho on drums, Danny Daniel on keyboard and Oye Katuta on backing vocals.
The band has been together for the past 14 years and specialises in reggae with a touch of traditional Shambo flavour. Omidi d'Afrique released its debut album 'All We Need is Love' back in 2005 followed by 'Green Revolution' seven years later “Green Revolution” won them the Best Reggae award at the recent Namibia Annual Music Awards. “Winning this award brought us to a higher stage and inspired us to carry on producing reggae music,” says Haukongo. Haukongo has wished Ras Sheehama and his band luck with their show, saying Rastafarians have to wish people good luck and not bad luck. “It’s a pity that we cannot take part this time, but we hope that in future they will contact us well in advance.” Meanwhile, Omidi d'Afrique is working on its show planned for August.
“We want to give our fans a show that they will not forget. This will be a show that will be like a bridge from 'Green Revolution' to ‘Fire Burn’, which is an album already recorded, we just want to do duplication by taking songs like ‘Dula’ and 'Sunshine' which are constantly requested by our fans,” says Haukongo.