Tamale to host traditional music festival

BY: Kouame Koulibaly
Tamale to host traditional music festival
Mohammed Alidu is a widely travelled percussionist who runs the Bizung School of Music and Dance in Tamale

Residents of Tamale in the Northern Region will be entertained to a variety of made-in-Ghana sounds on Saturday, July 31 when the Bizung School of Music and Dance (BSMD), in collaboration with the Playing for Change charity, organises a traditional music festival at the Dakpema chief’s palace.

Artistes billed to perform include Mohammed Alidu, Abu Sadiq, Aaron Bebe and Samuel Addo. Others are singers Nana Ama, Awurama and Iskhadi, the Tamale Youth Home Cultural Group, Tahama Dance Group and the Bizung School Dance Ensemble.
The BSMD is in Tamale and run by the widely travelled percussionist, Mohammed Alidu. The school is funded by the United States-based Playing for Change, a movement created to inspire and connect the world through music.

“We are looking forward to some wonderful moments of Ghana-inspired music in Tamale. We all know the stress everyone has had to contend with since last year due to COVID-19.
“We want people in and around Tamale to come by to de-stress a bit and enjoy some of the great music on offer. It is going to be a lot of fun from 9 a.m.,” said Alidu.

Mohammed Alidu is a descendant of a long line of master talking drum players known as the ‘Bizung’ who have lived in the Tamale area for centuries. The BSMD was named in honour of his family.

The Playing For Change outfit was born in 2002 as a shared vision between co-founders, Mark Johnson and Whitney Kroenke. The idea for the project came from a common belief that music had the power to break down boundaries and overcome distance among people.

Through its worldwide travels, the Playing for Change crew has inspired many of the great musicians it has met on its journeys to form the Playing for Change Band. Alidu has been performing with the Playing For Change Band since 2009.

Apart from being with the Playing for Change Band, Alidu has also recorded material under his own name. His key aim is to help elevate Ghanaian traditional music to levels enjoyed by discerning music lovers all over the world.

Invitees to the concert at the Dakpema chief’s palace include officials from the Northern Development Agency; the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture; the Centre for National Culture and the TAMA Foundation.