Meet the evergreen Tagoe Sisters

BY: Eugenia Asare Tandoh
Tagoe Sisters
Tagoe Sisters

A few decades ago, the Tagoe Family was blessed with twins, Dedei and Korkoi. The two girls grew up to become incredible songstresses who have rocked the Ghanaian Gospel scene for a very long time.

With their melodious voices, inspirational lyrics and good stage presentation, they have travelled the length and breadth of this country, as well as some parts of the world, propagating the Gospel through their sweet music.

In a chat with the Tagoe Sisters in Accra, they recollected how they started singing while they accompanied their mother to farm at Dunkwa-on-Offin when they were as young as five years.

The younger of the two, Elizabeth Korkoi Tagoe (now known as Auntie Kakra), said all they did on the farm with their mother, Madam Theresa Aidoo of blessed memory, was to sing because they were too young to do anything, while the adults cleared the bush and searched for firewood. She remembered how they improvised with empty milk tins as microphones to sing all day till it was time to return home.

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When the duo were about seven years, Mrs Lydia Dedei Yawson (Auntie Panyin) said, their mother brought them to Accra and enrolled them at the Alogboshie Primary School, near Achimota in Accra, for their basic education.

Being identical twins, they used to play pranks on people who could not tell them apart. Auntie Kakra recollected with nostalgia those times and said anytime she did something mischievous, she pointed at Panyin, who also denied being responsible, making it so difficult for people to find out who actually was the more mischievous of the two.

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All through their lives, Auntie Panyin said, the Lord had showered blessings upon blessings on them.

They were adopted by the late Nana Wood Akumfi II, a chief of Saakyire in the Central Region, when he realised that their mother was a single parent.

“Although we were very young, we used to back singers like Felix Bell,Gee Man among others and Mr Picus Laryea, host of television programmes like Voices of Rhythm’ and ‘All Shades’ used to feature us on his shows in the 70's,” Auntie Kakra said.

After completing basic school, the twins enrolled at the Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA) in Accra, where they undertook a study in catering.

The twins joined the Open Bible Church International in 1983. While there, they met the Advent Heralds, an all-male singing group. They backed the singing group at crusades and anywhere it was invited to sing.

The turning point in their music career came in 1985 when they met the late Rev. Francis Akwasi Amoako, Founder of the Resurrection Power Evangelistic Ministries during a crusade. He saw the great talent they had, and decided to take them under his wing to groom them.

“Rev. Amoako told our adopted father about his plans to take us to Kumasi to groom us to become great musicians in future and he agreed,” Auntie Kakra said.

“Rev. Amoako, who later became our Spiritual Father,” Auntie Panyin said, “taught us a lot and showed us the best ways to serve God. He taught us to rely and trust in God only because human beings would always disappoint but the Lord God is always faithful.”

Auntie Panyin said under the tutelage of Rev. Amoako, they toured most parts of the country, and overseas attending crusades and conventions where they propagated the Word of God through music and in no time, they had become the big and widely known, Tagoe Sisters.

The Tagoe Sisters then recorded their first album in 1987 with the title, Nyame Ye Kese, which was written by the Advert Heralds. A year later, they released Stay in my Heart and Orekyekye.

They sadly recollected how, in 1990, while they were returning to Accra from a crusade in Takoradi, together with their Spiritual Father, they were involved in a fatal accident between Mankessim and Apam which resulted in the death of Rev. Amoako. Auntie Panyin also sustained serious head injuries and had to be operated upon about three times to restore her face.

“The death of our Spiritual Father was a big blow to us. We thought our world had come tumbling down. But, you know, Rev. Amoako had already prepared our minds about God’s unfailing love for us and the fact that He will never desert us and so we had to forge ahead, depending only on God,” said Auntie Kakra with great emotion.

The Tagoe Sisters later met Rev. Dr Thomas Harry Yawson, their Song Writer and Director who later became Auntie Panyin’s husband with whom she has three children.

The Tagoe Sisters later released; Yesu Be Ye Ama Wo, M’anya Yesu, Anka Matete, Watua Maka, among other songs. Their latest song, however, is Adona
When asked what advice they had for youngsters, they said young people should not sleep too much, else they would be overtaken by time, adding that they should look up only to God and never to human beings.

“And remember, respect for elders is very important so don’t ever forget that,” they added.

The Tagoe Sisters are so grateful for God’s blessings and believe that they also need to bless others, for which reason they have set up The Tagoe Twin Foundation to assist twins and get twins whose mothers use them to beg off the streets. They also have the Tagoe Sisters Association for twins where members help one another.

Apart from singing, Auntie Panyin is a caterer and Auntie Kakra, who has a son, is an events planner.