Its a couple of hours till the new year starts 2011. If i'm supposed to pay any attention to the movie 2012, I guess I have a year to do everything that's on my bucket-list and geez I don't think one year is enough for me to get through everything. So this year i decided not to go for the watch night service at church to usher in the New Year like I have been doing for the past twenty something years, but rather stay home and blog about my 2010 as it ends. So where do I begin, ah yes January 2010. So January was intense. I began the year signing up for an 8month insurance diploma, during which that time I was involved in collecting data in the Central Region of Ghana for research. So basically January was all work and no play for me. But it also led to my meeting a lovely young lady which has led to a very interesting friendship. Then came February which marked then end off my research and also marked the beginning of someone I love and care about deeply not talking to me for 8months straight. Glad to say that part is over. It was or is supposed to be the love month but I guess cupid skipped a house or maybe died before reaching mine. ooh yes I stop going to church around this time. Nothing really happens in march so I guess we will skip that, no offense to people born in march. AAAh next up is April, the month which I was born. The month that starts the Zodiac calender. Fast forwarding to my birthday April 10, I woke up feeling empty inside. Empty in the sense I looked back at my twenty something years off existence and realized I had not really accomplished much and felt really low. The day ended with yours truly at home watching a crappy Ghana Music Awards show which resulted to a little blog war. lol!! Just when I thought things were gonna go well May through August brought about a very dark time in my life I prefer not to talk about. All I can say is I wouldn't wish anything like that to happen to anyone ever. October through to November was all fun. Just having loads of fun. Meeting interesting people, bar hopping etc. life was just easy, not worrying but just living as if there was no tomorrow. DECEMBER!!!!! Christmas!! everyone loves december. everyone's cheerful happy about the holidays. And yes lots of carry over holidays this December. This particular year I was and still so excited because most off my really close friends where going to be in town. 23rd of december started my christmas campaign but the following morning saw this come to an end when i got involved in a motor accident and its costing me an arm and a leg to get it fixed. hmmm!!!! Its now 31st December 2010 11:54pm exactly and I am wondering how 2011 is going to be like. The things I am most grateful for in 2010 1. My life 2. My Family 3. My Friends
Hoping 2011 brings greater things and so much more.
Music changes year after year. Sometimes it takes a turn we all don't approve of and most times we just love it and follow it even if whatever is being said in the song is silly or inspiring. Sampling is an essential part of music today. Like Kanye West All falls down, was sampled from Lauryn Hill's mystery of iniquity. The same with The Alan Parsons Project , Ammonia avenue in his song Heartless. Jay-z also sampled Andrea Mcardle's Hard knock life in his album Life and times of Sean Carter Vol.2 Ghetto anthem. We have our V.I.P borrowing from Mario and Luigi in the ever classic Mario brothers in their song Lumbe Lumbe. So i guess its something we cant do without. But my problem is are the originators of these sampled songs getting any credit.
So i came across a song earlier on in the year,really great song.
Now its the end of the year and a similar song just popped up. Hmmm!!!
So the question is who borrowed from who and forgot to tell the other?
Dont you hate it when you hear something or you've been told about something great, fun , interesting whatever only just to be disappointed. Yea disappointed coz you dont see the connection to whatever you've heard to what you've seen. It really bugs me, why ? coz u raise my expectation only to crush it.
Asem came out with a song Pigaro and Gh went all WOW!!! It was something new, one could say a bit refreshing from the super mario instrumental type songs we've been hearing. So there was some talk about a video that was gonna blow our minds only to find out Pigaro 1-5 was just another video with no concept. If pigaro is a dance, what type of dance is it?
Couple of years down the line and Gh Self-proclaimed Diva Eazzy drops Wengeze!! OMG!!! chale chale!!! Banging track kraah..This trackz got all da dem girls shaking something. I'm like this one dier itz gotta have a Sick Ass video..
WTF!! x2 Aaaah not again.. the video comes out only to find eazzy doing borborrbor, dressed up like Terry Bon-chaka. Talk abt disappointment paaah. Watz with da wengeze. chale catch ma eye small erh.. The only interesting/cool thing abt the video is the silhouette. chale on point.
Thinking all the crappy ass songs/videos are over, I stumble across a track from Praye recently "New Dance" aka "Getoge" The song is talking abt doing a new dance.. hold ur waist with ur two hands and do the dance..WTF!! after listening to the track expectation level like 4.
Yep and I was right. Ok video but what happened to the new dance. Replayed the song like 5 times trying to figure out which part of the video da New dance featured in. SMH!!
I had a really fun weekend. It started out with fifa 11 yea yea I know... then it went to playing squash which left me with lots of aches and pains. Finally when i decided to go to bed, I check my facebook page and twitter to say gudnyt to my lovely #twitfam and pals on the #Fbook, I noticed peeps where talking about a beauty pageant(Miss.Malaika) and the hilarious things some of the girls where saying. So I turn on my Tv and decided to watch for a while. So many hilarious things were said but that will be discussed in a follow piece. Right now i want to dwell on a question that was asked to 5 of the contestants who made it to the final round, the make or break round.
Q. Who is an African, what makes you an African, Is it your Country or your Colour?
So i asked myself the same question who is an african and what makes me one. I said to myself, this is a really tough question. It is a bit difficult to answer that without sounding racist. To me an african is not defined by their colour. Obviously their (Contestants)trip to Egypt didn't educate them enough. I guess either they missed all the lighter skinned africans or maybe they thought they were tourist coming to explore the african deserts and pyramids. But seriously so what makes me an african. I was born and still live in Africa that's if i'm looking at it from a simple view, and no i dont live on trees.lol!!!!
I read somewhere that to being an African means that you must be committed to Africa and its future well-being. Well i guess it makes more sense than what the Malaika ladies were saying.(An African is someone who is likes african food, someone who is black!!!!! etc) What about foreigners who care or are committed to Africa and its progress, should we call them Africans too?
This is what wikipedia had to say:
The African continent is home to many different ethnic groups and people of wide-ranging phenotypical traits, both indigenous and foreign to the continent. Many of these populations have diverse origins, with differing cultural, linguistic and social traits and mores. Distinctions within Africa's geography, such as the varying climates across the continent, have also served to nurture diverse lifestyles among its various populations. The continent's inhabitants live amidst deserts and jungles, as well as in modern cities across the continent. Wow I like the way the put it saying we leave amidst deserts and jungles carefully highlighted, as well as modern cities across the continent.
I guess the definition of an African that i would stick to probably would be someone born in Africa, of African descent, committed to the well being and progress of Africa, understands its unique culture and appreciate it's diversity and acknowledges it's problems with a vision for a brighter future.
Deadprez take on being an African
Well Malaika is over and done with, waiting for Miss Ghana this weekend. Really wanna know what wise things that are gonna be said on the show. Lets just hope they do better than Malaika girls or else we just have to scrap beauty pageants till it becomes both beauty and intellectually entertaining.
In Ghana, using or even openly talking about cannabis or 'ntampi' is pretty much taboo. literally translated, one of its names "abonsam tawa" actually means devil's tobacco and it is typically associated with madness. Judging from our culture and from general attitudes towards the plant, one would think it had no place in Ghanaian society. This is far from true, and for those in the dark about it, this is the reality.
Marijuana use in Ghana even though illegal is five times the world average. People use marijuana in Ghana more than in the Netherlands where it is legal and more than in Jamaica where it is used by the Rastafarian population for spiritual purposes. The 2007 UN World Drug Report shows that in 2006 about 21% of Ghanaian's aged 15 to 64 used marijuana. The world average for that year was 3.8%. In another survey, Out of a sample of 894 senior secondary students, it was discovered that 58% of the sample population were current marijuana users. Figures for alcohol and cigarette users were 46.2% and 44.6% respectively, thus making marijuana the recreational drug of choice for that age group. What is even more surprising is that the parents of these secondary school kids are utterly oblivious to their children’s 'narcotic pastime'. Thanks to "Visine" and little tricks such as the old towel under the bathroom door the kids leave no traces or evidence of their drug use. To the parents, everything seems perfectly normal. The plants roots go even deeper. In my research, i came across a number of articles and 'testimonies' by tourists about their experiences and impressions of Ghana. To many visitors, Ghana is a 'stoner's paradise'. Seriously, not all tourists mentioned it in their stories, but for those that did, i usually saw the article transform from a general account of the holiday to a detailed account of a marijuana expedition. Seaside locations feature frequently in these accounts. Basically anywhere with a "rasta" population is a potential hotspot for pot loving tourists.
For the sake of readers who don’t know much about it, we should note some facts about the cannabis plant and dispel some of the myths associated with it. First of all, the name cannabis refers to the different preparations and variations of the plant, the most common of which is marijuana. This variation contains the psychoactive compound THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) which is what gets users 'high'. Immediate effects include reddening of the eyes 'red-eye' dryness of the mouth 'cotton mouth', increased heart rate, relaxing of the muscles and of course 'the munchies' or hunger. In the short term, users will have impaired short term episodic memory, working memory and impaired concentration. This is probably why students and workers who use marijuana get lower grades, have more work related accidents and are absent more frequently than non-users. The drug is however no more harmful to the body than alcohol or tobacco . Long term effects of marijuana are not so clear.
Till date there is no conclusive evidence linking marijuana smoking to lung, head or neck cancers. Quite surprisingly, some studies have discovered the anti-tumoral properties of certain cannibanoid’s and moderate use of the drug is said to protect against head, lung and neck cancer as well as breast cancer. The long term neurological effects are yet to be established.
Not all plants from the cannabis Genus or family are grown for their psychoactive properties. Hemp, the soft durable fibre cultivated for industrial and commercial use is obtained from a strain of the cannabis plant which lacks in THC and thus cannot get you high. Arguably one of the best fibre's for clothes ropes etc, the hemp plant has been used for many industrial purposes including biodegradable plastics, paper, health foods, textiles and fuel. Countries including China, France and Canada produce and reap the economic benefits of industrial hemp.
Other countries and states have allowed the controlled use and possesion of marijuana. Pot loving tourists like those i mentioned earlier flood cities like Amsterdam with little else but marijuana on their minds. One can only imagine how much revenue is generated from Amsterdam's 'Coffee Shops' (Coffee Shops are bars licensed to sell marijuana.). With legalization comes a decrease in drug crime and the freeing up of courts and prisons for more serious offenses. Often, prisons and courts are held up by the arrest and trial of people, for the possession of marijuana, (from drug dealers) regardless of the amount. Control of the drug by the state itself not only removes the drug dealers from the picture but also takes away the excitement some users get from doing something illegal. With drug dealers out of the way marijuana is less likely fall into teenage hands. Countries where the sale of marijuana is institutionalized have found effective ways of limiting the amount a person can buy for any given period so as to prevent its abuse. No more smoking till you pass out.
So which is the greater good? Should cannabis be made legal so the country can enjoy the health and economic benefits that come with it? After all its not like a new substance is being introduced into the system. Its use being already widespread, legalizing would just be a way of taking advantage of a problem. Or should it remain an illegal drug for our 'morality' and for sake of the youth? No matter what the answer may be, the cannabis plant is and will probably remain the most controversial plant on the planet.
This was written before the GMA's took place. I didn't want to post it but upon reading http://www.mightyafrican.blogspot.com today I just thought it would be a good idea to put it up.
Another year is upon us and once again, we welcome the Ghana Music Award’s (GMA). I should be excited but unfortunately I’m one off the few Ghanaian's who are not too happy about the GMA. I don’t want to get into the awards in details about how I feel about it. That will be expressed after the show. Let’s just focus on the main event and forget about the side shows.
Let me work my way to what I believe a boring GMA 2010 by starting with GMA 2009. Celebrating 10years of exceptional Ghanaian music if I am right. First of all the Mc’s dragged the show for far too long. How can you have a show with such boring Mc’s please one year of Samini was enough but to give him two that’s just plain torture. Sorry to say but who in God’s name asked Obour to be an Mc? Question: Was there a shortage of people who could do the job? Was Obour the only person they could pick? Geez?
With GMA 2010 it’s said, that if we want to find out who the MC is or are, we would have to come to the show to find out. Honestly tell me people, would you want to waste 50GHC to find out that, the MC for the GMA is another Obour type person. I guess that would be a waste of money. No offense Obour.
What the heck was DJ Black doing? Isn’t he supposed to be the “BEST” dj in GH? If so I ask again what the HECK happened to him at the award show. Playing the wrong tunes at the wrong time or should I say right time. How can you be introducing someone to the stage that’s Ghanaian and you are playing foreign type songs. Where is the respect for the Ghanaian Artist who have supposedly composed good tunes and Dj Black is busy playing Foreign type tunes to introduce Ghanaian people. Even introducing the guest artiste wouldn’t it be appropriate to play and instrumental if their tune but instead we get Western type of music being played.
Sorry Mr. Tumtum but I guess GMA 2010; you should hang up your Head set for another Dj to try something different. So we can judge the vast variety of Dj’s we have in Ghana.
I have to point out one thing about the actual award show even though I said I was not going to talk about it. But writing this has got me thinking about that particular award “Hip hop Song of the Year”. I had no knowledge of the fact that we actually had a genre in Ghana called Hip-hop, if I am not mistaken the “Godfather” of hiplife merged Hip-hop and our unique African tune Highlife to make it hiplife.
I really find it amazing, amusing and at the same time Entertaining when we have guest artiste coming to grace the GMA. One thing I have noticed over the years is the lack of appreciation on the part of we the audience and the Ghanaian population in general towards these guests. If my memory serves me right we’ve been honored with the presence of Blu3 from Uganda, D’banj, Wande Coal, Ikechukwu and Naeto C from Nigeria, Ja-rule from USA etc. What have we done to show our appreciation, nothing I suppose. Taking you back a couple of years when Blu3 were in Ghana, crowd response ZERO. Moving forward to about two years ago Ja-rule in Ghana crowd response semi-impressive. Going back to just last year D’banj and his Mo-hit squad doing their thing and the crowd response is appalling. Seriously the only song that the crowd responded to that day was falling in love by D’banj. Seriously are we Ghanaians not enlightened about music and I’m not talking of just music in Ghana but in Africa and the world also. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw little or no affection for our guest artiste till they heard a song they knew. What happened to sensitization of other music from across the globe especially Africa. The funny thing is after the music awards about six to eight months down the line everyone is so into D’banj and Wande Coal. If I was to put a wager and asked anyone what D’banj’s first album was I’m sure I would leave with my money.
Bringing you back to GMA 2010 I have no doubt that crowd would definitely go wild wanting to listen Wande Coal and Doneo, but how many songs will they perform that’s my Question ? I guess maybe Wande might do Bumper to Bumper for the crowd but what about the other songs on his album. If he is allowed to do two songs will the crowd be able to sing along. Same goes for Doneo with his hit “Party Hard” what about songs like ‘Ten Ten’ from Wande Coal or ‘be mine’ from Doneo etc. New to the Ghanaian scene is South African Group Jozi. What feeling will they leave Ghana with since it will be their first time performing in the country? How is the crowd going to respond to them? I doubt there has been any air play of their songs. If there has what impact has it made on the Ghanaian people. I think they are going to be shock when they find out that the crowd are watching them like something is wrong somewhere.
Enough said about my feelings towards the Ghana Music Awards. If I say anymore I would probably sound like a Nagging wife or a broken record. Lets see how things Unfold. I promise I will bring you a comparison off last year’s awards and this years when everything is over and done with.
Like New Years we celebrate our birthdays once a year. Each new year, we have resolutions, how we want our lives to turn out and what things we want to acomplish.
We go through the year most if not all the time not acomplishing. So it is for birthdays, year after year we make wishes hoping for better things to come. We wait and wait, most if not all the time whatever we wish for do not materialize.
It got me thinking and i asked myself all these years i have been celebrating my B'day, making wishes etc just wondering which of these wishes ever materialized . Not to sound negative but sometimes you ask yourself "what do you have to show for it?"
I woke up today thinking I am not going to make any wishes but let it just play out. Then I realised that life is fun and I have the privilege to be alive each year and thats the wish we never ask for but we keep getting each year.
The journey from Zero to Hero is hard to accomplish anywhere in the world for a fashion designer, actor/actress, an artist etc, but nonetheless business-minded individuals are coming up with ways and means to reach fame and stardom, not the kind where only the people in your neighbourhood know, or the kind of stardom that has a push from the snowman. Lol!!!
So today we are going to look into the life of an upcoming designer hoping to break into the so-called tough market. This market that has been dominated by Fashion bigwigs such as Oswald Boateng, Armani, Jimmy Choo, Kofi Ansah, Ababio etc
What are the unique things they've done to break them into the Fashion world and kept them there? Some would say it's the household name that's selling themselves etc.. But my question is "How did they become that household name when it comes to fashion?"
Here is an interview with up and coming Ghanaian Fashionista
Kspider: Tell us about yourself, whole package if you know what I mean?
Sefakor: I would rather make it brief.
The name is Sefakor Gbewonyo, born on Tuesday 9/07/1985 to Vincent and Cecilia Gbewonyo. I spent my childhood in Koforidua, Cape Coast and Accra. I had the major part of my schooling years in Cape Coast where I was a product of OLA Boarding School and Wesley Girls High School. I continued in K.N.U.S.T to study B.A Communication Designs.
I love people and easily associate, I speak a bit of French.
I love to be creative.
Kspider: What is your trend of Fashion called?
Sefakor: The Slipper Collection is Sepha and the Scarf line is Bernice Herman by Sepha.
Kspider: So as a child did you have any idea/plans of being a designer? Sefakor: I would not call it ideas or plans, I say this because I only have a natural flair for being creative. When I was a child I used to draw on the painted walls of my father's living room, my mum often got upset and I was sometimes given a paint and a brush to repaint, I guess I was already forming the creative habits then, and whiles in school I drew in the government text books till I was asked to bring my own copies. LOL! I drew in my friends text books too because they often got excited about my drawings. I continued to study design right to my University Education. Looking back I think it wasn't really a plan, It just happened.
Kspider: How did you get started and where do you draw your Inspiration from?
Sefakor: How did I get started? ? Well I actually started with my slipper line SEphA, I used to watch a man back in school do his own thing(slippers), so during my holidays from school I asked him to make a few to give to my friends and family back at home. My family and friends would often get excited and ask for more, that was just how it started. After sometime I thought about adding a few designs to make it more beautiful, then I resulted in using fabric. One afternoon after my fabric hunt I made a beautiful scarf out of it and everyone seemed to admire it so I did more and then I did more and here I am still doing more.
I think it's just my love for fashion and creative thinking.
Kspider: What makes your sense of style and designs for your label, different/unique from the countless fashion statements out there?
Sefakor: The difference is my love for variety and lushness which I try to inculcate in my designs to tie up the fashion statement.
Kspider: Readers would want to know how many of the same scarves/slippers do you make in a collection because you know people will like to stand out and be the only ones to have specific items/accessories?
Sefakor: I totally agree with you, I'll hate to walk out the door looking all fabolous and I have some replica, it kills! So I try to make few designs of the same type and when its off the shelve that's it. If a fan is dying to have one it'll rather be a 10% chance they'll get a replica.
Kspider: Where do you see yourself in 5yrs? Sefakor: Mmm!! well I see SEphA in Africa, Asia, Europe, The Americas you name it.
Kspider: Do you plan on branching out into something more than slippers and scarves?
Sefakor: The creative mind is always at work.
Kspider: What were the challenges you faced getting your design on a roll and what are some of the current challenges?
Sefakor: I would say kudos to all who have made it straight up in starting any business venture, Its pretty much not easy,talk about raw materials, and the whole packaging thing, it's really tough getting stuff like that in our part of the world. It takes real digging up and experiments to get the best for a product.
Kspider: Talking about challenges what do your parents think about SEphA?
Sefakor: My parents were not quite shocked that I started this, to them it was another Sefa's innovation. They were excited though but it was so normal that I had thought about something nice to do, they gave me all the support I needed and they still do.
Kspider: What african and international platforms are you targeting to showcase your designs?
Sefakor: Hey! Take it slow with me! LoL for now I am thinking of making designs for my fans to wear and look pretty!! It kind of puts a smile on my face, which urges me on. When I do think about showcasing my designs anywhere on International or any platform for that matter you and my fans will be the first to know, for now SEphA is still growing.
Kspider: Are you generating any sort of revenue?
Sefakor: For now I would say not really.
Kspider: Is it a full time job?
Sefakor: For now yes it is.
Kspider: So what is your opinion on the current fashion trend in Ghana?
Sefakor: It's fabolous, I think Ghanaians are doing great! We've got talent here and I think we are making a great use of it. I would like to acknowledge ReneeQ, Christie Brown, Kofi Ansah, PKOG, Ben, etc a whole lot of them. They are really making our motherland proud.
Kspider: So who is your favourite Ghanaian designer? Sefakor: I think I have favourites not just one.
Kspider: Have you thought about ways to market and expand Ghanaian fashion internationally?
Sefakor: Yes I actually have and as I mentioned earlier it's just the beginning for SEphA.
Kspider: Final question, I am sure readers out there are dying to know how much the scarves and slippers go for $?
Sefakor: In USD(Us Dollar) Bernice Herman Scarves range from $3 to $50 plus depending on the kind of fabric, design and size whereas SEphA slippers range fro $10 to $20 plus depending on the design and leather used.
I guess you've heard it all from SEphA, she is "Bringing today's woman, the best in quality fashion accessories at an affordable price(s)."
Happy New Year!!! Greetings from Swedru (The land of Sakawa)...Just Kidding, but they do send their greetings though. I kinda have been in the dark for about two weeks ie. No TV (not entirely true), No radio…the only internet access is on my phone and trust me there’s no way you would be able to enjoy "Myjoyonline". Anyway I hear the road tolls have been increased and as a result of that, I have an interesting story for you.
On account of fieldwork, (Zzzzzzzz) I have been with a research team in the Swedru area for about three weeks now and we’ve been working our way slowly down to Kasoa. Anyway, yesterday I had to come to ‘beautiful’ Accra to attend a lecture on Insurance Law. So I took a troski from Kasoa to circle and they charged one cedi.
The explanation given to us passengers was that the reason for this was on account of the increase in tolls. Apparently the toll has been increased from 8gp to 1Ghc wow!!! That’s like 92gp extra if my math is correct. Quick Questions? 1. Why the drastic increase in price? 2. Where or to whom is the money going? 3. Haven’t they learnt anything from Kuffuor’s mistakes? 4. Are they going to give us a break down of what the tolls collected would be used for? 5. Last but not the least, following Q4 How will they be audited? So the whole story actually begins on my way back to the Kasoa area. You see, after class I got a friend to drop me off at the Nkrumah Circle so I could board a Kasoa troski to join my workmates. Upon boarding the vehicle, I heard passengers complaining about the 1ghc the troski drivers are collecting from them. Some were even doing book long talk. This went on and on for about 30mins after we had left the station. At one point the trotro driver even stopped half way to destination. I think he had plans on abandoning us there, don’t know what made him change his mind and continue the journey. So anyway we got to the Weija-Kasoa barrier and one of the passengers shouted to the police officers
"Officer Officer stop this car.
Officer Officer stop this car".
So the "Koti" stopped the car and asked what the problem was. One of the passengers sitting in front of the troski got down and narrated the whole story to the police officer (Senior most chuking). Kudos to the officer, I think that dude deserves an award big time. Can you believe he made the troski mate get down from the car, walk to the toll area to change money and give each passenger the amount of money they rightly deserved? Funny huh?!!!!! It was soo hilarious, you should have seen the face of the driver. True Kodak moment. We thought the driver might not take us to our destination if we left the barrier so one of the passengers alerted the "Koti" if anything like that should happen we would write down his number plate and give it to him. • Chuking(reporting) • Troski/Trotro(commercial bus) • Koti(Police Officer)