Ayetoro - Artist Page
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Ayetoro was formed in 1996 by Nigerian Composer and piano player Funsho Ogundipe. This band defines the sound of modern afrobeat.

Ogundipe is a jazz influenced musicians and his compositions and sounds have twice changed peoples perceptions of afrobeat in Nigeria. In 1996 his album Naija Blues was the first to experiment with Afro jazz and Hip hop when he featured Nigerian Film star and former rapper J T West on "J T's Tale."

Another defining moment was the critically acclaimed 'Something Dey," a blues based afrobeat tune whose video -apart from being voted amongst the top 50 Nigerian videos in 1998- featured simple African backgrounds. It set a trend for outside shoots for Nigerian African flavored songs. The video, directed by Ogundipe himself, has clearly set the template for Ayetoro music and visual productions, one of understated posturing, offkey songs and allusive lyrics.

His love of poetry and prose comes out in the lyrics of the band's single "Naija Blues Part 2," from the 6000 Miles and a Minute album released in Nigeria in 2004 on his own Ebutte Metta record label. Here, interesting wordplay sets down visions of modern Nigeria, a place beset by its own challenges and inherent contradictions.

Ogundipe is also a jazz composer of some weight. His harmonies are modern and take afrobeat into uncharted areas. Melodic minor scales are featured on "Becklow Gardens," a tune he wrote in honor of the block of flats he lived when in West London.

Ayetoro has been able to attract serious musicians in its two incarnations. There are presently two versions of the band. One in London the other in Lagos. Byron Wallen, the Belize / British born trumpet player and composer ,is a collaborator in the London ensemble, alongside others like Nick Cohen (bass), Robert Fordjour (drums); while in Lagos, the Cameroonian guitar legend Oscar Ellimbi has played on every Ayetoro release except one.


Naija Blues (1996)
The Afrobeat chronicles vol 1( the jazz side of Afrobeat) (2003)
Omo Obokun: The Afrobeat Chronicles vol 2 (2006)
Asoju Oba (2012)

Official Web Site: www.ayetoro.com

The African and Caribbean Music Circuit
E-mail: info at acmc.uk.com & charles at acmc.uk.com

Similar Music:
Nigerian, Afrobeat, Piano