My name is Dele Adeyanju born some thirty years ago at Ikare Akoko, Ondo State. My father, the Late Abiodun Adeyanju, popular in his younger days as Sir Bendel was from the ancient Oyo town, precisely the Ilusinmi compound of Isale Oyo and Ekesan-an compound, Oke Balogun Oyo. My mother is from Erusu-Akoko. I spent the first phase of my life at Ikare-Akoko, Ondo State, after which we moved to Ilesa, Osun State when my dad was transferred to the Ilesa branch of an old generation bank where he worked then. I am from a family of four, two boys and two ladies which I am the first.
My Musical Journey
I cannot reminisce on my journey into the arts world without mentioning my late father. He was a talented composer, music historian and fine music analyst. He loved music and once told me that twice he was to join Idowu Animasawun’s band, but his father, my grandfather, objected because of the ‘Alakowe’ background they had. He opened me up to music, Juju music of Dele Abiodun, Obey, Apola, Haruna and hundreds of forgotten and unknown names and genres in the local music industry.
This knowledge I started using on my popular radio show, Agbaletu, when it started about 10 years ago. So, basically, my journey into music began from when I knew and understood my father’s passion. After secondary school, I formed a pop group known as the Origin band with a few friends. Then, we were influenced by songs of Mike Okri, Ebenezer Obey and later Remedies, Plantashun Boiz and others. The band couldn’t work for certain reasons. My love for music fanned the embers of my passion for broadcasting. Those were days when we had very few radio stations, like one or mostly two in each state except Lagos.
I released my first studio album, ‘Orientation’ in 2005. The second ‘Amin Ase’ in 2009 while the third, ‘Gbedu Flavour’ was in 2014, though I recorded some studio live sessions during those period. I started out as a performing artiste in 2009 and closed shop in 2011. But those two years were eventful.
Why I stopped performing
I quit performing because my father wasn’t so comfortable with me doing Owanbe music and so on. He wanted me to face broadcasting and he advised me as a super-creative person that I am, I am yet to explore the full potentials of the broadcast business but I still record songs and I still produce albums. So for me, when you talk music and broadcasting they are intertwined in me.
My kind of music
The kind of music I play is fusion; fusion of Highlife, Soul, Calypso, Juju and some real Gbedu. My radio programme, ‘Agbaletu’ however talks about old generation musicians, living or dead. I discovered that most old songs are a therapy for old people. I have songs that date back as far back as the 1920s and 30’s which are good music with lyrical depth as old as they are. It brings them good old memories and the interview segment reveals facts of past events shrouded in secrecy. The inspiration is from God and my father has my lifetime gratitude for giving me my personal and professional identity especially in ‘Agbaletu’
My recent documentary
The documentary is borne out of a passion to build a new Nigeria through young people, from lessons of history. While I was growing up, history was such an interesting subject where you learnt how Mungo Park discovered the Niger, though we were not told that he met people on the banks of the Niger river.
We learnt a lot from our history teachers and textbooks and it fired in us, reasons to be inquisitive. A time came and history was struck out of the curriculum to be replaced by government. Government and history cannot be same.
Government as a subject cannot replace history. The documentary is titled the real story of Nigeria. I want a platform where every young Nigerian can view and realize through pictorial and recorded visual evidence, what our country Nigeria has been through pre-independence, post –independence; the coups, wars and how we can solve our problems by looking back in time to learn from past mistakes and even solve some problems by using methods adopted by fathers of Nigeria like the sage, Late Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Sir Ahmadu Bello, Dr NnamdiAzikwe, Alhaji Tafawa Balewa, who was himself, a highly intelligent and purposeful leader.