“I WON’T LET YOU SPREAD THAT I QUIT MUSIC BECAUSE EUROPE OR BITIM REW DAFA NEEH” CRIED OLUGANDER ACCUSING SOME GAMBIAN PROMOTERS AS BEING BIAS
In response to a comedy piece by Modou Musa Ceesay and Pa Ousman Joof in which they gossiped and made fun of Gambians around the world including our Gambian musicians who rose to stardom after the New Millennium, Dr. Olugander a.k.a Abukpapa who spent most of his time in Europe the past 2 years said he has not run away “no day or night”adding that “there had never been a time in history that i decided to stop singing for that is what i loved. So please Pa Ousman this mission is not a joke to me and my fans are listening, therefore when passing such infos watch out, i won't let you spread that i quit music because "Europe or bitim rew dafa neeh". Dr. Olugander is not a strange name in the Gambia. He has been active in the Gambian reggae/dancehall world since the late 90s when he was part of the Promise land crew and later went solo after the new millennium. He has travelled to the United States once and other countries in Europe a few times before finally settling down in Scandinavia. There is a wollof saying that “Khew khewy, ayut, nyaka khewa aye.”
Dr. Olugander and his colleagues Singateh a.k.a Freaky Joe, Pa Omar Jack, Jalex, Yusupha Ngum a.k.a Jollof man, Egalitarian, Njie Be Da Conqueror etc all enjoyed the best form of celebrity life in the Gambia until 2 to 10 years ago but the reality is that, they are no longer in the limelight of Gambian showbiz and as a result, they all decided to resettle abroad still trying to do music and are probably even doing better music where they are and might even be more appreciated over there too. The bottom line is that, khewatung Gambia and that’s what they don’t want to accept.
If you ask me, I won’t say they did anything wrong and are not a bunch of opportunists who just wanted to travel as some critics may put it. I will say they did it because the reality of life hit them hard and they needed to regroup themselves and choose their destinies in which case, they would have stayed and continue doing music in the Gambia, enjoy the celebrity life and remain being broke or travel to the west like their peers and seek greener pastures like they are doing now and still do music on the side.
These folks did all that they could because they are all very personate about what they do. They also enjoyed every form of benefit, privileges and opportunities as musicians. The problem is that they didn’t have the kind of support they needed from our people and were not making money doing music alone. They all started growing, became family men or had a lot of personal and family responsibilities to take care of which music was not doing for them. The only option they were left with was to leave. Like I always say, this is a trend in Gambian showbiz and it will never stop until and unless we have structures in place, create incentives, respect and value our talents, support each other and be proud of our own. They are not the first as we have seen the likes of Ifang Bondi, Soto Koto Band, Musa Afia Ngum, The Born Africans, Fugitivz, Masla Bi, Pencha Bi, Aada gi, the Dancehall Masters etc and most recently right after the Oluganders, the current king of Gambian music, the biggest cat in the game Gibou Balla gaye announced his decision to quit after one last show and he won’t be the last to quit. There are some we haven’t heard in a while and maybe they have already quitted and are doing other things or even went to the back way because there is no money in the Gambian showbiz which they (the musicians and artists) don’t want to hear. In one of his recent posts, Gee wrote “The average person given a D100 would think of his stomach before thinking off getting a GEE cd.. Not to add paying for show tickets.” In a separate piece, Gee wrote “A Music Industry without PROPER support from cooperate bodies isn't going anywhere. A few companies are supporting but are they really supporting the way it should be. They're few companies with Marketing Budgets big enough to change 10 Artists lives every year.
There's this habit I've seen around they'll rather give you a little so you would always come back asking and not whole heartedly supporting you in a way you can stand on ur own.” This confirms my point coming from the horse’s mouth. Nekung di make khalis bottom line.
To tell you the truth, we have great talents though. What do we lack? Support. Support, support. “ Kepa kuye dok, dogit ta takh”. Music and talent in general is very expensive to create and I don’t think any of them are doing it for fun only. Unless and until Gambian Talents start making money from it like talents from other countries, we will continue to have many Oluganders. Thanks bro for the correction that you didn’t run away. Just remember that khew khewi aayut, nyaka khewa aye. Find below the Dr. Olugander’s full response.
“Congratulations my brothers for the wonderful drama, you guys are doing good and i loved it. Just wanna clear one part from Pa Ousman joof's that "Bitim rew dafa neeh nyom nyeep downan". Point of correction, i had never ran away no day or night, alwayson the road between Europe and AFRICA and my fans can confirm this. When it comes to music as a promoter you should be following the artists to know their latest development, how comes you don't see the new songs we release every day, the tours we are making from country to country both in Europe and Africa, the projects and movements? Does a musician that quit music be active as
such? You some of these promoters not all promoters but some of these promoters are on the mission to groom one artist and kill the other instead of developing the whole industry as ONE GAMBIAN music, then you come back again and say we quitted music how does this sound to you? Well i can supply you with a bunch of new songs that are brand new that you might have seen but never promoted, but you can acknowledge the fact that they are all new, meaning we are still active in the mission. There had never been a time in history that i decided to stop singing for that is what i loved. So please Pa Ousman this mission is not a joke to me and my fans are listening, therefore when passing such infos watch out, i won't let you spread that i quitted music because "Europe or bitim rew dafa neeh" The whole earth is my home, therefore i can play music anywhere i go, as a man there comes a time you have to move around and the music mission says so. I congratulate you and Modou musa who had been my star & friend too from the Gambia.”