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Ghana Voice JANUARY 14, 2015 - by Staff Writers
EDIKANFO AFRICAN SUPER BAND TO REGROUP
Ghanaians old enough to remember the showbiz scene of the late 1970s and the early 1980s in Ghana will not fail to remember Edikanfo African Super Band.
Nicknamed 'The Pacesetters', Edikanfo knocked on the door of world fame and possible fortune when, in 1981, it recorded and released the album Roots Of Highlife and the hit song Nka Bom.
Just when the sky seemed the limit for this dynamic band, the coup d'etat on the last day of 1981 put the brakes on the band's successes - for years Ghana had to endure night curfews and the business of being a dance band, largely a night time activity, found the members unable to ply their trade and therefore having to leave the country.
Well, the good news is that the band is regrouping this year and gigs have already been lined up in Germany for the summer.
"We'll be going into the studio in February to record fresh songs," bassist and songwriter Gilbert Amartey Amar - popularly known as Chikinchee - told Ghana Business News last Friday in a telephone interview from his base in Amsterdam, Holland.
German producer Markus Coester, who is digitising music for the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation, has already expressed interest in working with the band and there are plans to record previously unreleased material, as well as new material, and embark on a tour.
The English producer Brian Eno guided the band's very successful 1981 album, released and distributed worldwide by EG Music.
Mick Fleetwood and Fleetwood Mac also travelled to Ghana to shoot the musical film The Visitor with the band.
The band's members are now based in different parts of the world and are involved in various music projects.
Band leader and trumpet player Osei Tutu and saxophonist Paa Akrashie are in Ghana, bass player Gilbert Amartey Amar lives in Amsterdam, keyboard player Ismael Odai is based in London, drummer and lead singer George Williams lives in Scotland and percussionist Albert Williams lives in the USA.
Unfortunately, guitarist Kwesi Okran, percussionist and master drum player William Quist, as well as Faisal Helwani (who founded the band) have all passed on.
The group says Kwesi Okran and William Quist will be replaced.
Available information on the internet indicates that Edikanfo's music is in demand by fans who keep asking where and how to find their CD.