African Ancestral Wall celebrates on wings of music
It was the 4th annual celebration of a variety of achievers of African descent at the African Ancestral Wall at New Ningo in the Greater Accra Region, on November 19, 2022, when a piece of vibrant percussion music filled the air as icons of black achievement were acknowledged.
The throbbing, infectious music came from the Nungua-based Efeee Noko traditional band. The Efeee Noko band, led by master drummer Richmond Otu Laryea, and inspired by the significance of the occasion, served fascinating rhythms that appropriately captured the spirit of the occasion.
The African Ancestral Wall was established by Mr Jerry Johnson from California in the United States (US) who felt it necessary to impart genuine black history, which was lacking in the regular school curriculum to local students.
He realised there were several schools in New Ningo and the surrounding areas and logistically impossible to regularly visit them so he came up with the idea to have portraits of selected personalities painted on a wall so that the children could go on field trips and learn about the people.
There are currently about 100 personalities painted on the African Ancestral Wall. They include Kwame Nkrumah, Winnie Mandela, Sgt. Adjetey, Bob Marley, Ephraim Amu, Fela Kuti, Na Gbewa, Marcus Garvey, Steve Biko, Harriet Tubman, Nzinga Mbande, Martin Luther King, Amilcar Cabral, Cheik Anta Diop, Yaa Asantewaa and Thomas Sankara.
A key aspect of the celebration was the invitation to children from the New Ningo vicinity and Accra to do sketches pertaining to the characters. There were a few speeches and food, as well as a generally feel-good atmosphere, but everything was efficiently glued together by music from Efeee Noko.
“We were glad to play at such an important celebration. We performed at the start, middle and closed off the programme. Everyone, including the many children around, loved our music and the dance we offered,” said the group leader, Richmond Laryea.
Efeee Noko has other gigs lined up before the end of the year. These include opening at the Lamajo and Our Music festivals being organised respectively by singer/songwriter Epixode and drummer/producer Ekow Alabi Savage. It looks like an enthralling run to round off the year for Efeee Noko.