Artists making lives matter: A colloquium in honour of Eedris Abdulkareem

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Eedris Abdulkareem

UNCHAINED Vibes Africa and Lakreem Entertainment will tomorrow, Saturday, August 13, 2022 host a colloquium in honour of hiphop star, Eedris Abdulkareem. It is a special edition of Freedom Vibes, the sixth in a series of events geared towards promoting artists’ freedom of expression, and the use of music and other artistic expressions for civic engagements. Venue is Freedom Park, Lagos Island, Lagos. Time is 11.30am to 4.00pm. The colloquium has as theme ‘Towards 2023: The Role of Artists in Making Our Lives Matter’.
According to a statement jointly signed by the Executive Producer of Unchained Vibes Africa and for Lakreem Entertainment Inc., Ayodele Ganiu and Myke Pam respectively, the objectives of the colloquium are to “reflect on the music of Nigeria’s hip hop veteran Eedris Abdulkareem and his contributions to nation building and sensitising the general public on the role of artists in a democracy while also mobilising the artistic community to be more active in civic engagements.”
The event will also provide a platform to draw attention to Abdulkareem’s selfless service to Nigeria through music and his current health challenge, the statement said, adding, “The colloquium will complement the efforts of various stakeholders in ramping up support for his recovery. As one of Nigeria’s most visible and consistent artists advocating for good governance through music, Abdulkareem has worked with Unchained Vibes Africa and served as an Ambassador of Freedom Vibes since its official launch in October 2021.”
Tagged ‘Freedom Vibes 6.0 – Eedris Abdulkareem Colloquium,’ the event will sensitize the public on how music can effectively carry critical advocacy messages and raise awareness about social and political issues in a way that traditional advocacy cannot. Using an audio-visual presentation to dissect the music of Abdulkareem, the colloquium promises to showcase the commonality and presence of music in people’s lives and its power to condense feelings and ideas into small units of time which can easily be accessible to the average person. From health emergencies to insecurity, the colloquium will reflect on Abdulkareem’s years of advocacy in demanding respect for human life and dignity of the Nigeria person.
Over the years, his music has been a major influence on citizens’ yearnings for change and has triggered not so palatable responses from the authorities. Abdulkareem never keeps quiet in the face of injustice or when the country is in disarray; he releases songs that speak truth to power. Abdulkareem was recently diagnosed of kidney failure which has slowed him down in his usual activism through his music.
Today, in the face of unprecedented insecurity, health emergencies and multiple crises that have made life unbearable for ordinary Nigerian citizens, the usual energies and vibes from the Hip-hop icon, who has been the voice of the voiceless, are missing. This may appear like a trying period for the Hip-hop icon but in reality, it is bigger trouble for the ordinary citizens and the poor masses whose voices have lost the amplifying voice of Abdulkareem, whose music represents these voices that have been silenced by poverty weaponized by bad governance and corruption.
The colloquium will be graced by music executives and industry key players, including the CEO of Kennis Music/Kennis 104.1 FM, Dr. Kenny Ogunbe (Keke) and veteran musician, activist and protégé of Afrobeat legend, Fela Anikulapo Kuti, Dede Mabiaku. The duo are expected to reflect on Abdulkareem’s artistic journey and his activism, respectively. They will also take a critical look at the current dearth of fearless, patriotic, consistent and conscious artists, what this portends for Nigeria’s future and the urgent need to safeguard that future. The colloquium will provide a platform for ramping up support for Abdulkareem’s recovery from his current health emergency.
Goodwill messages are expected from colleagues, friends, associates and fans of Eedris in Nigeria and the diaspora. There will be a virtual live session with Abdulkareem who has remained in high spirit despite the current health challenges.
The hybri (physical and virtual) event is free and open to the general public through prior registration.

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