Sunday, 24 November 2013

79th birthday of Zeal Onyia

(Born 24 November 1934, Asaba, Igboland)
Masterly trumpeter, composer and public intellectual whose 1958 composition, the effervescent “Egwu Jazz bu Egwu Igbo” (“Jazz is Igbo music”), leads him to research Igbo contribution to the development of jazz, African American classical music, and who receives the highest accolade of his career when none other than Satchmo himself, Louis Armstrong, visiting Lagos, Nigeria, in 1961 and listening to Onyia play at Surulere stadium, inquires in that unmistakeably Popsian voice, “Who is that hip cat?”

Twitter @HerbertEkweEkwe

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