Instruments do the talking at Myko Ouma's show

There is an experience one is proud to have been part of and Myko Ouma’s weekend musical was one such experience. It was awesome. I mean he is a man with firsts. He pulled off a rare one, as the first Ugandan musician to loop instruments and record live on stage. This was as he did his version of P-Square’s Personally, during which he coordinated about seven instruments and improvised with a phone, to bring out a rendition that would have the original artistes look on, and more certainly dance in amazement.

Tuesday September 17 2013

Instruments do the talking at Myko Ouma's show

Ouma plucks the guitar at his concert at Kati Kati. Photo by Edgar R. Batte. 

By Edgar R. Batte

There is an experience one is proud to have been part of and Myko Ouma’s weekend musical was one such experience. It was awesome.

I mean he is a man with firsts. He pulled off a rare one, as the first Ugandan musician to loop instruments and record live on stage. This was as he did his version of P-Square’s Personally, during which he coordinated about seven instruments and improvised with a phone, to bring out a rendition that would have the original artistes look on, and more certainly dance in amazement.

Let alone the beautiful stage, customised with his name - Myko Ouma, the sound was good and the production and continuity was all perfect stuff that you watch in concert footage of international stars.

The dazzling lights added to the glamorous experience, on offering by a Ugandan music star that befits the title of a legend but has not been celebrated to that status as this is a society that would rather enjoy itself on bubble-gum songs, and cheap lyrics of artistes who are proud to sing about rats with the most vulgar innuendos.

Ouma’s two-day music experience he chose to call Season 2, a sequel to his first season, also brought together Iryn Namubiru and Juliana Kanyomozi, the duo that rocked as I-Jay in 2000.

The two divas, all smiley, holding hands and blending on the microphone, performed Moses Matovu’s Sirina (Anatwantwala). And when they bowed at the end of their performance the crowd clapped in support of a reunion of gifted artistes.

Ouma is an artiste who possesses a rare trait of humility, because his artistry is silently inscribed on works of artistes like Maurice Kirya, some of Mowzey Radio and Weasel’s hit songs, Benon Mugumbya’s Olunaku Olupya album, Juliana Kanyomozi’s music and Iryn Namubiru’s hit songs, among others. He is one of the kind that knows how to do so much and not tell it on the mountains.

His performance on both Friday and Saturday lasted three hours, with Ouma playing the guitar, the arched harp (adungu), saxophone and thumb piano.

He performed 17 songs, but the tune that got the crowd on its feet was Echuli Echuli. It didn’t spare fellow artistes Susan Kerunen and Oscar Kihika who took to the front as they danced away to the musical fusion of traditional and modern instruments and lyrics from Ouma’s motherland- Gulu to go with it.

Ouma made his musical expedition worth the sail because he had one surprise after another, from Isaiah Katumwa with whom he did Tayinza Kundekawo Yesu, with overtones of passion as the two played hard, each coming out strongly- Katumwa with his sax and Ouma with his guitar.

Unlike the usual concerts, of artistes singing, this was a unique experience where it was all about celebration of instrumentalists as they took centre stage to perform live.

Ouma shared stage with percussionist Samuel Bakka, who got animated while playing the drums, on their collaboration titled Fo fo, then keyboard player Pragmo with whom he did Neptune and Sat Mo, Jude Kiracho with whom he performed Kombolewa, Maurice Kirya with whom he did Ugandan Girl, plus saxophone player Brian Mugyenyi with whom he did Smile and Kuku.

Minutes to midnight Ouma closed the night with a collaboration with rappers Enygma and Ruyonga on their music collaboration titled Club Banger.

And as the crowd kept asking for more, a cheerful Ouma kept bowing in respect, signaling that a beautiful, memorable concert had come to the end. The applause only got louder because this was an experience worth more than the Shs50,000 entry fee.

rbatte@ug.nationmedia.com

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