In just a few hours, the finalists in the Goldberg music initiative Ariya Repete will mount the stage in Ibadan as the competition comes to an exciting finale.
From dozens and dozens of budding musicians who auditioned, it has finally come to the final stage where sixteen of them will show why they stand a chance of finishing first.
Here’s a short profile of each of them, and by tonight one of them will be selected as the winner of this year’s edition.
Bata of Africa
The Group which comprises of 4 men and 3 women will be looking to win the drumming category at Ariya Repete today. They’ve made bold claims on the title of King of traditional drumming and have sworn to put the genre on the map should they emerge victorious.
Eni Afede Cultural Group
Representing Ado-Odo Ota are Eni Afede Cultural Group – the self-acclaimed rebuilders of drumming in Nigeria. They will be looking to do Ogun state proud, home of K1 the ultimate, Adewale Ayuba and Kiss Daniel, all of whom will also be performing on the night.
Ifesowapo Cultural Group
All the way from Ilorin, the Ifesowapo Cultural Group have promised to deliver a new level of Faaji when they grace the stage today. After scaling through the quarter finals and semis, you wouldn’t bet against them thrilling the audience and going home with the grand prize.
Igba Iwase Cultural Group
The lead drummer of the Igba Iwase Cultural group stole the headlines last week with her creative drum accessories which she used to capture the imagination of the audience with her rhythmic beats. Videos of her performance were rife on the internet and she will be looking to repeat that level of performance to seal the crown tonight.
Oludare African Culture
It wasn’t just the outfit of Oludare African Culture that caught the attention of all in attendance, the electric performance from the band of native drummers was equally delightful. They have sworn to give it their best this evening, drumming with all their hearts. After witnessing their last performances, you wouldn’t bet against them to deliver on their promise and win the grand prize.
Sakuba Cultural Group
Last but not least in the traditional drumming category are the Sakuba Cultural Group. The talented group could be considered triple treats as they’re equally talented at dance,singing and traditional drumming. They will be competing in the drumming category and all other contestants will be wary of their potential.
Fuji & Juju Category
The regional auditions in Ekiti was one of the most keenly contested, with immensely talented individuals slugging it out for a place in the quarter finals. One of the winners who emerged from Ekiti state will be looking to crown his Fairy tale ride to the finals with a 2 Million Naira Cheque.
Abiodun Oloto has vowed to seize this huge opportunity and deliver the performance of the night.
Another who will be representing Ekiti state is Ayegbayo Oluwaseun. Seun who’s been a particular fan favourite, will be hoping he and Abiodun can make Ekiti proud when they grace the stage tonight. He has already promised to keep the winning formula that has gotten him this far and he will be hoping his fans can help him cross this final hurdle between him and his dreams.
Ayodele Olatunji has a rather peculiar aura to his sound. His brash delivery on classic melodies has often made him stand out amongst his peers. With just one more performance between him and the grand prize, Ayo will be looking to maintain what has kept him in the competition this far. Expect fireworks when Ayodele Olatunji steps on stage.
Ayomide “Hunter” Omotola
Ayomide “Hunter” Omotola is a passionate Fuji artist, he is also a religious man who believes it is his calling to have made it to the final. His creativity and his melodies have often given him an edge in the competition and he’ll be hoping he can bring his A-game when the finals come around later today.
Bukola “Becky Shilo” Hammed
Bukola “Becky Shilo” Hammed is one of the female artists looking to prove that women are a force to reckon with in this music genre. Bukola who couldn’t hide her excitement on getting to finals has said she is more than confident that she will emerge victorious after all is said and done tonight.
Muhammed Adewale rounds off the trio from Ado Ekiti looking to prove their worth. Muhammed who clearly takes influences from modern day hip-hop will be hoping his Afro fusion style will be enough to thrill the audience and earn his the grand prize.
Saheed Akangbe is so confident of winning today’s finals, he’s already stated he will dedicate a track to Nigerian breweries after emerging victorious. The Fuji act from Abeokuta had nothing but kind words to say about the Ariya Repete initiative, stating that after the competition it will be a dream come true to become a Goldberg ambassador.
Shola Martins hails from Lagos state, so it was no surprise that he outperformed most at the Lagos semis. Now with the finals heading to Ibadan, it will be interesting to see if he can replicate his level of performance in front of a new audience.
Sulaimon Ajao promised to deliver a great performance in Lagos and he certainly did, with his renditions earning him a place in the finals. His confidence is arguably part of his charm which has endeared him to his fans, many of which will be rooting for him tonight. Sulaimon has defied the odds making it this far and he will relish the opportunity to prove skeptics wrong one last time and walk home with 2 Million Naira.
Wale Crown is gunning for the Juju Category. What’s surprised all with his dexterity of the Juju genre. An experienced and versatile singer, Wale Crown knows his onion and is sure to thrill audiences when he steps on stage for the last time in the Ariya Repete competition.
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