Source: nigeriafilms.com
Adewale Ayuba
Adewale Ayuba
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Adewale Ayuba, the latest Doctor of Music in the country, was overwhelmed with the award. He told TOPE OLUKOLE recently: “It is an indication of acceptability of my contribution to the music industry and I thank God for it.

“Nevertheless, it's also a challenge for me to do more for the industry, especially in the area of Fuji music.”

Ayuba grew up as a child singer. By the age of eight, he had started singing at local musical competitions and fiestas in Ikenne Remo, while attending Ansar-u-Deen Primary School, Ikenne.

His distinct voice and immeasurable talent as a child star of note could not be ignored. This consequently led him to opt for music as a career after his secondary school education at Remo Secondary School, Sagamu, Ogun State.

Although he gained admission to read Architecture at the Ogun State Polytechnic, Abeokuta, his music career took centre stage; and in a bid to carve a niche for himself, he made his first album, Ibere (Beginning) at the age of 17.

His rise on the Fuji music scene was rapid. He managed to attract a lot of attention to himself. His image soared with each release and he soon became a household name in Nigeria.

Inside his expansive office at Opebi, Ikeja, he described Fuji music as “My utmost constituency.”

But why has he not been part of the struggle for the 'kingship' in the Fuji music genre? He quipped: “The struggle and the fight over who is the king of Fuji music are the antics of the devil to relegate the music to the background; but our people don't understand all this. They are just fighting without focus. The fight has really cost us a lot of setback.

Hip-hop artistes today capitalised on the struggle and fight to incorporate Fuji into hip-hop. Hip-hop today is complete Fuji.

“Apart from this, ask those that are fighting for the headship of Fuji music to describe the colour of the crown they are really fighting for. It's a major distraction for us. It's time for us to sit down and rethink and stay focused in the industry.”

You can hardly fault Ayuba when he talks about relationships. Does the fuji music crooner, who definitely is never in short supply of female fans, really care about women?
“It is me and my wife. I can't marry more than one wife. Though, there is the wherewithal to do this, but what for? She is giving the best. Having many wives is a big problem and serious headache. I can't do it.”

Ayuba's hi-tech instrumentation and distinct voice changed the face of fuji music. For the first time in history, fuji music, which was hitherto ignored by the Nigerian elite, was embraced by all and sundry.

With successful concerts in Nigerian tertiary institutions, Ayuba became a celebrated artiste among the Nigerian elite class, changing the image of fuji as a class of music which could easily be enjoyed by the educated and cultured people.

Today, Ayuba has raised the stake in the industry with the coming of his latest album titled Ariya, which he described as another chart buster.

“The album is carefully packaged to meet the demands of my fans worldwide. Like the name implies, it's an all-encompassing record, with a blend of percussion, voice and pure African rhythm.”

It will be recalled that after the success of Bubble, Ayuba released a follow-up album, Mr. Johnson, Play For Me and that too became an instant hit in 1992. He embarked on his first tour of West Africa in 1993 and the tremendous success of this tour led to his first visit to United States of America, also in 1993.

His Los Angeles debut consequently recorded a huge success and his music was described as having two elemental forces –rhythms and the human voice – to create a compelling, entrancing and powerful sound to remedy even a terminal case of sensory deprivation.

What then is the next level for Ayuba in the music industry?
“We are currently working with some corporate companies on how to lift the image of fuji music in the country.”