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Ghanaian Music

todayMarch 6, 2023 36

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The music of Ghana often reflects a Caribbean influence, yet it still retains a flavor on its own. While pan-Ghanaian music had been developed for some time, the middle of the 20th century saw the development of distinctly Ghanaian pop music. High-life incorporated elements of swing, jazz, rock, ska and soukous. 

Highlife music is a type of West African popular music and dance that originated in Ghana in the late 19th century, during its history as a colony of the British Empire and through its trade routes in coastal areas. It describes multiple local fusions of African meter and western jazz melodies. it later spread to western Nigeria, and flourished in both countries in the 1950s. The earliest form of highlife was performed primarily by brass bands along the Ghanaian coast with the likes of Gyedu-Blay Ambolley, Fella Kuti, Femi Kuti and the City Boys. 

Eventually, in 2010 exactly, rhythm and poetry found its way into the Ghanaian music scene and mashed itself with the very popular at the time, Highlife music forming the hiplife. 

Hiplife is a Ghanaian musical style that fuses Ghanaian culture and hip hop. Recorded predominantly in the Ghanaian Akan language, hiplife is rapidly gaining popularity in the 2010s throughout West Africa and abroad, especially in the United Kingdom, United States, Canada and Germany. TuabodomNkasei, Toffee Castro have been very influential in the development of hiplife making it quite big in Ghana. 

Ghanaians celebrate their independence on the 6th of March with music being their main focus as they mix all types of music specific to the different major ethnic groups in Ghana which include the Akan, Ewe, Ga-Adangbe, Mole-Dagbani, Guan and the Gurma with Ghanaian musical instruments that include talking drums, atunpan, obrante (kpanlogo), kete, penpensiwa, gomme, fontomfrom, dawuro, blekete, dawuro, and seperewa, a traditional harp from the 18th century. 

Written by: Arthur Daka

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