Wednesday, 14 October 2020

OlaleOne: Nigerian Contemporary Musician


OlaleOne on Marimba



Olalekan Azeez Oduntan aka OlaleOne was born (26/05/1964). He is a Song Writer, Composer, Griot, Xylophonist, Percussionist and an Entrepreneur. He started his artistic carrier at age twelve gathering his peers together back then and teaching them drama and music with his little level of understanding and knowledge. It was also at that young age that he was reciting poetry for Nigerian Radio and Television stations. He used to travel from Lagos to other states of Nigeria to recite poetry at the weddings, burials and coronation ceremonies depending on the invites.

After his secondary education, he joined the then Center for Cultural Studies University of Lagos, Nigeria as an associate member(now Creative Art Department) taking part in drama, music and cultural productions. It was there that he met the late Professor Akin Euba who was the head of the Center. He performed in the Professor's Band called Akin Euba and the Elekotos. Series of programmes were recorded for radio and television by the band and some albums were recorded too. Because the Cultural Studies was a place of learning, he was also participating in stage drama productions by Professors Bode Osanyin and Uwa Hunwick. It was there that he learnt how to play the Xylophone from Nigerian ace Xylophonist Ede Nwigwe. An instrument he plays so well today.


OlaleOne First Album Abracadabra

Also at this department, he met and performed with Music Professors like Laz Ekwemen, Alaja Brown and Joy Nwosu Lo-Bamijoko. He was a member of Joy Nwosu's band that was performing all over Nigeria and within the University of Lagos back then. And Joy Nwosu's band also recorded some albums for Decca Records. He was the Xylophonist for the band. He has done sound tracks for stage and movie productions.


OlaleOne Second Album Mama Afrika

OlaleOne recorded his very first album in the year 2014 entitled Abracadabra. The album consists 6 tracks like Abracadabra, Orente, Iyawo, Ore, Orente Instrumental and Ore Acappella. The album shows the musical prowess and dexterity of his capability to handle different genres of music at the same time. And the track Orente topped the Reverbnation Nigerian Afro Hip hop Chart as #1 for more than four times that year. And thereafter, it started shuttling between #1 and #3 on that same Reverbnation Chart.

He dropped another 6 tracker album number two in 2016 entitled Mama Afrika. The album consists of tracks like Mama Afrika, Peace Song, Ojumo Mo, Enu, Ololufemi and Peju Sweetie. Again, the track Peace Song has been topping the Reverberation Nigerian Afro Hiphop Chart as #1 for the past four years. At a time in between those years, Peace Song nearly topped the world music chart!!! Because it was either #100 or #120 in the world. But presently today, the track Peace Song is in #2 on Reverberation Nigerian Afro hop Chart.

OlaleOne Fourth Album The Message

OlaleOne's number three album was dropped in 2018 entitled Afrikan Jazz. This project involves the African wooden Xylophone leading other western instruments combining together to make good music. And the project is very successful. It is musical marriage of the local instrument Xylophone and modern musical instruments like guitar, keyboard etc fusing together to make rhythmic sound but the local instrument Xylophone dominating the whole musical arrangement. The album consists of 6 tracks like Nnenekwo, Dedebi, Ayangayanga, Akoi Wata Geri, Ero Oja Olowo and Olusegun. This musical project is completely instrumental and that is why it is being referred to as Afrikan Jazz.

OlaleOne's fourth album was just released three weeks ago. It is a musical project put together during the stay at home Pandemic Covid-19 period. The album is entitled The Message and it consists of 6 tracks like The Message, Omolara Babie, Eko Ile, Aye, Shake Ur Body and Ina Fe e Ran. Just as the title of the album implies, the whole tracks on the album are all loaded with messages. In the album, the musician deals with issues affecting the world at large and our society in general. The album the message is indeed a message for this messed age!!!


Title                                      Album Details

Abracadabra                       Released 8 March 2014

Mama Afrika                       Released 6 December 2016

Afrikan Jazz                        Released 4 June 2018

The Message                      Released 8 September 2020

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