Nigerian music producer on the advantages of being blind

Nigeria’s Cobhams Asuquo is one of his country’s leading music producers and has helped propel to stardom singers like Asa, whose 2007 debut album became an international hit.

Nigeria’s Cobhams Asuquo is one of his country’s leading music producers and has helped propel to stardom singers like Asa, whose 2007 debut album became an international hit.

In addition to producing the album, he wrote and co-wrote several of its songs.

Blind from birth, he says he always had a keen ear for music and would coax a tune from anything he could get his hands on.

“My love for music began to manifest itself from when I was about age six or so, when I started to puff my cheeks and play the 12-bar blues,” he told the BBC’s series African Dream.

“I moved on from there to locking myself up in the bathroom which was, you know, the average child’s nightmare, but I would do it just because of the reverberating effect I got whenever I whistled from the bathroom

“I just enjoyed the sound. I literally would come into the living room and beat on anything I found, from the dining table to other things in the kitchen to barrels that we used for storing water, all kinds of stuff,” he added.

Although nobody in his family played an instrument, a friend who noticed his musical inclination gave him a toy piano.

“I pretty much figured out tone and movement and all of that, and I guess music just began to take form in my life from then on.”

His eclectic taste, he says, was partially influenced by his father who had a varied collection of records which ranged from R&B and soul to Nigerian and Caribbean music.

 

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