- Title: NIGERIA: Musician uses his own body as the instrument
- Date: 31st May 2002
- Summary: (L!2) LAGOS, NIGERIA (RECENT) (REUTERS) SV PIRATED CD'S AND TAPES SOLD ON LAGOS STREETS (2 SHOTS) SV/CU MORE OF JOSEPH PERFORMING WITH STUDENTS (3 SHOTS) MCU (English) JOSEPH OMOTOYE SAYING: "I'm going to be a wonderful entertainer. But not just a wonderful entertainer but a successful entertainer. I wish to be recognised worldwide. I wouldn't mind if I become a legend too." CU/MCU MORE OF JOSEPH IN CONCERT (3 SHOTS) SV AUDIENCE REACTION
- Embargoed: 15th June 2002 13:00
- Location: LAGOS, NIGERIA
- Country: Nicaragua
- Topics: Arts,Quirky,Light / Amusing / Unusual / Quirky
- Reuters ID: LVADQB5DJBQ4VEBR8EQO8UK65RGO
- Story Text: Many African musicians find it difficult to make a living from their music, but one Nigerian musician plans to defy the odds by using his own body as his instrument.
Joseph Omotoye, known as Joe-Joe, is a Nigerian musician working on his first album. Joe-Joe's record will be different from most. It won't carry any credits for the usual instruments like guitars, trumpets, or keyboards.
That's because Joe-Joe has invented his own kind of music.
He calls it body beats. Just by tapping on parts of his body, Joe-Joe can produce a variety of sounds.
"I started doing this body beat when I was so young. But it came to the limelight since 1995. Whenever I'm alone I keep on beating my body, beating the wall, beating the doors, beating any object I see. In fact any object I see on my way is in trouble", says Joe-Joe.
"Body Beats" has become a regular feature on many stages in Lagos and Joe-Joe also gets to showcase his voice, and skills on the talking drum.
Apart from performing at various nightclubs and working hard on his upcoming album, Joe-Joe regularly works on improving his skills. He likes to get together with theatre arts students at the University of Lagos.
Student Segun Adefila says "We call him Joe-Joe body beats. He creates his music from the hair on his head to the nails on his toes."
It's hard for most Nigerian musicians to makemeet.
The industry is moribund. So when he's not practising or performing, Joe-Joe works as a hairdresser.
"To become a successful man in this field of entertainment you have to have something to back you up. In Nigeria you have to have something that will support you to keep you and your life going," he says.
Apart from stars like Femi Kuti, very few can make a living out of their art. Copyright laws are largely ignored and pirated copies of popular albums are readily available.
These are tough conditions, but Joe-Joe doesn't stop dreaming.
"I'm going to be a wonderful entertainer. But not just a wonderful entertainer but a successful entertainer. I wish to be recognised world-wide. I wouldn't mind if I become a legend too."
His dreams will not be easy to achieve. But Joe-Joe is ready to keep making music and perhaps one day they will come true.
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