Port Harcourt, the capital
city of oil rich Rivers State is widely acclaimed as the garden city of Nigeria, while the state remains the hub of oil and gas operations in the country as well as a tourist destination of choice, home of entertainment and legendary hospitality and occupies an enviable position as the treasure base of Nigeria.
This is probably some of the major factors that attract visitors from different parts of the world, Local and foreign investors, tourists and all classes of fun seekers to the state on regular basis, either for business, investments, sight seeing or to catch fun in the ever bubbling entertainment outlets that abound in the city.
In a recent interview with The Tide Entertainment, a seasoned showbiz personality and group clubs manager of Afrique Express Hotels Limited, Port Harcourt, operators of Afrique Executive nite club, Rumuekini, Afrique New Moon nite club Igwuruta, Afrique Niger Delta nite club Omoku and Afrique New World nite club Aba Road, Prince Victor Ifeanyi Mini recalled with nostalgia the night life that existed in Port Harcourt in the 1970s and mid 80s.
He noted that from the 1970s and 80s the state played host to both local and foreign personalities most of whom are now residents of the state which they regard as their home away from home, enjoying the conducive business and social climate as well as the people’s legendary hospitality to strangers.
According to him, in those good old years, the city bubbled with nightlife, night clubbing and cinema culture were in vogue. He said this was the era when Nigerian economy was buoyant, cost of living very cheap and affordable. When one United States’ dollar was an equivalent of Nigeria’s 75 kobo, before the Babangidarism of the Nigerian economy in the mid 1980s.
He reinstated that during those years of economic bliss a young graduate of a secondary school had automatic employment in the civil service or companies. The young secondary school leaver earned about N90.00 per month as a civil servant, while staffers of banks and other reputable companies received between N100.00 and N120.00.
The showbiz impressario disclosed that undergraduates and graduates of universities were seen as demi gods by society, cultism, kidnapping and the present day societal ills were unheard of, and there was free movement. He stressed that during this period of peace, tranquility and plenty, nightlife was very sweet and peaceful, night clubs and cinemas dominated the city. There were posh and standard night clubs and cinemas that dotted the entertainment clan, where fun seekers went to enjoy themselves.
The Veteran club administrator revealed that the GRA axis, Creek Road, Agrey Road Harbour Road and Borikiri in the Old Port Harcourt township as well as Diobu and Ogbunabali axis were the happening areas in the city, young city crawlers and night clubbers bedecked in their best elements and outfits stormed the popular night clubs, cinemas and other entertainment outlets to catch undiluted fun every weekend.
Prince Mini disclosed that in those days, most of the fun seekers adorned their latest soul train dancers get ups, “boogie woogie” shoes, Italian and Spain made designer sole branded Terio cudio shoes, James Brown style shirts and Bongo trousers, tight fitted shirts, stelleto shoes and 3 layer boots, jerry curls and Afro head dos etc, stormed the night and other entertainment hang outs to enjoy a fun full nights.
He stressed that when you stepped into any of the clubs, you felt the ambience of the cosy environment, the exotic lightening system that gave you the feeling of paradise on earth. A bottle of chilled beer was sold for 50kobo, a bottle of champaign cost less than one naira, while the gate fee was about one naira or less. A charered taxi cab otherwise known as drop from the GRA/Presidential Hotel axis) to Old Port Harcourt township was less than one naira.
According to him, with only N30.00 in your pocket you could have a girl of your for the night choice with all expenses paid, choice drinks at your beck and call, you were regarded as a big spender and the envy of friends and foes. Your dress code also spoke volumes of your taste, class and personality. What you wore showed your class and with N15.00 you could achieve it.
He also disclosed that the popular music genres were high life, pop, juju, funk Afro beat and reggae among others. The reggae faithful were recognised by their dread locks and they used Indian hemp as sacrament for all Rastafarians. Other drugs commonly used were madrass, Chinese capsul, solution etc, while the music stars then were Micheal Jackson, Bobmarley, Peter Tosh, U-Roy, I-Roy, Dellinger Anikulapo Kuti etc.
Their music were the rave of the period, the songs contained meaningful lyrics, inspiring with clear messages that appealed to the youths who saw them as role models and were influenced by their life styles, dress pattern and ideologies of their chosen music idols. Night clubs were the magnet for the big boys and girls who thronged the clubs for disco/funk jump manned by different disco jockies (DJs).
He said the dance steps in those days were the John Travolta (Saturday night Fever) style, Funky bebop steps, George Clinton boosty, soul train, Collin and Ricky James styles, Micheal Jackson’s Electric shock dance etc. this era marked the groovy years of entertainment in Garden City.
He enumerated the popular night clubs which included: Lido (Aggrey Road), Salt and pepper (Aba Road), Orupolo (Borikiri) Copa Cobena (Aggrey Road), Aquarius (Aba Road), Land of Cannaan (Town) Dreams (Aba Road), Blue Pellican, Uncle Sam (Aba Road), Chi-Chi (Aba Road) and Executive Club 67 (Creek Road) among others.
Apart from the night clubs Prince Mini also stated that among the popular cinema houses that held sway in the city were Empress (Okija Street), Presidon (Aba Road) Rivoli, Plaza and Central cinemas at the Old Port Harcourt Township. He said with one naira or 50 kobo you could watch your favourite Indian Chinese and Western movies that dominated the cinema viewing culture in the city.
The showbiz entrepreneur reiterated that night life was indeed sweet and groovy as the city bubbled with fun under a peaceful and friendly environment devoid of this present day social malaise, kidnapping, cultism and other social vices. He stressed that people enjoyed music as most of the songs promoted social values and morality unlike today that the so called music stars sing gibberish, promote drug, immorality and gangsterism in their songs.
He, however, noted that despite the present day economic hardship and security challenges, Port Harcourt still remains the city to beat in terms of entertainment, hospitality and tourist attractions. He stressed that night life in the city is still lively as new night clubs spring up almost on daily basis the cinema culture is also at its optimum level as silver bird cinemas and Genesis Deluxe cinemas keep the flag flying.
The operators of entertainment outlets still do brisk business with growing clientele, while the state government have taken positive steps to tackle the security challenges. So, the beat still goes on.
Reno Omokri Writes Open Letter To BBNaija Enthusiasts
Reno Omokri has written an open letter to BBNaija enthusiasts.
In his letter, the former presidential aide asked ardent followers of the reality TV show to campaign for their businesses as much as they campaign for housemates who do not know them.
His letter reads
‘’Dear #BBNaija enthusiasts,
You see how you campaign for that housemate? Good. Campaign for your success like that. Instead of selling a housemate you don’t know and who does not know you, to me, use that time and energy to sell a product you can profit from to me. Do not be afraid of business or think that it is wrong to make a profit. It is not wickedness for lions to kill and eat antelopes. It is life’s natural order. Don’t be sentimental in business. Set your price competitively. Make your profit. Don’t exploit customers. But dont cheat yourself. A lion that does not kill will itself be killed!’’
A review Of Tiwa Savage’s Water & Garri EP
Nigerian multiple award-winning artist Tiwa Savage returns with a brand new extended play “Water & Garri. This comes less than a year after the release of her critically acclaimed third studio album “Celia”.
Water & Garri, a five-track body of work features Grammy Awards winner and veteran rapper, Nas, singer Brandy, the Nigerian underground artist Rich King and Alte singer and soul music stunner, Tay Iwar.
Since her return to Nigeria in 2012, Tiwa Savage has raised the bar for female artists. She embodied the almost frowned on sex symbol attribute in the music industry, her music is filled with flirting words and expressions. No wonder when she called herself African bad gyal, no one disputed the assertion.
Garri is a staple food among Nigerians, water is used to take or make Garri. The title as used in this context refers to her mashed style and global collaboration. She sticks to her heartfelt style in the course of making this album.
Tiwa Savage infused Rnb/Soul with Afro-fusion. The end product is a 19 minutes run of music with themes detailing heartbreak, love, hard work, perseverance, etc.
Nas and Rich King were on the opening track “Work Fada”, the pensive and reflective song preaches hard work and perseverance with Nas almost going preachy in his thought-provoking verse.
The six minutes long track is the perfect opener to the avarde garde album, who opens an EP with this type of lengthy play? Only Tiwa Savage could do such, the theme is distinct and it’s a well-calculated risk.
In 2016, Tiwa Savage’s marriage with talent manager Teebliz hit the rock. Five years later, she seems set to speak her truth. She reveals a little on the Interlude on her last album—Celia. On Water & Garri, Tiwa Savage dedicates two tracks to that ugly incident.
Ade Ori is a soft-light take on past relationships/marriage. She is now independent while she is hopeful about future handling. The lyrics drip with pain and regretful lines.
Tale by Moonlight was a popular weekly storied program on national television. Tiwa Savage details her fairy tale love expectations on this soulful 90s house music. Even though she flirts and gushing about the guy, she is cautious. Amaarae’s whispery vocals compliment Tiwa Savage’s flirt takes.
Seven years ago, American artist Brandy visited Nigeria. At a press conference before her performance at Classic FM Valentine show, she revealed she loved Tiwa Savage’s vocals, she liked it to a 14-year-old. Unknown to her, Tiwa Savage considered the Grammy Winner her role model and one of the reasons she is into music.
When they finally collaborate on “Somebody’s Son”, it is a perfect blend of two songstresses.
They complement one another, Brandy even sings in Yoruba. This track is one of the up-tempo songs on the EP. Its production is filled with Drums and mellow strings. Somebody’s son retains the themes of Ade Ori: it pleads for reciprocal love.
Tay Iwar and Tiwa Savage jointly closed the EP with a rollercoaster of deep expressive expressions. The horn-filled disco makes it sounds like a potential track for a Friday night out.
Veteran producer Pharell Williams called this project a classic but the fans failed to realize his caveat of it not becoming commercially viable. Tiwa Savage is unbothered if her recent promotional talks are anything to go by.
Water & Garri explores Tiwa Savage Rnb/Soul forte with an infusion of Afro-fusion, the EP is a dart between hope and despair. The production is pristine, however, the songwriting is underwhelming.
The featured artists almost overshadowed her. Although it’s obvious that this project is destined for the international market, the collaborations could have been lesser.
Wizkid Makes History As ‘Essence’ BeComes Most Shazam Song In US
Nigerian singer, Wizkid has made history in the United States.
The Grammy award-winning superstar made the history with his hit single ‘Essence.’
The 31-year-old father of three registered his name on the book of musical history when ‘Essence’ was announced the most Shazam song in the United States of America.
Apple-owned Shazam, through its Instagram account, announced Wizkid’s ‘Essence’ as the most Shazamed song in the country.
The app, which is used to identify music and TV shows by listening to a short sample of their audio, posted a pictured Wizkid with the caption: ”Big Congrats to @wizkidayo!! #Essence is now the most Shazamed song in the United States.”
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