Home Movies Entertainment News Tiwa Savages Abuja Rock Fans In Spectacular Christmas Concert

Tiwa Savages Abuja Rock Fans In Spectacular Christmas Concert

Nigeria’s top female rock act, Tiwa Savage, unleashed a savagery on her fans in the Nigerian capital, Abuja, which they are bound to remember for several years to come. It was expected that Tiwa will re-enact her ‘Tiwa Savage 49-99 New York premiere’ show in Abuja to the delight of her fans in Nigeria. Fresh from a successful promotional visit to the United States, the Queen of Afrobeat has become the hottest property in the African rock circuit.

It is not often that Abuja gets to experience a major musical extravaganza and this could be bigger than the Davido concert some months earlier in the year and which closed down Abuja at the time. The New York concert was full of glitz and glamour and Tiwa was in her best element as she launched the 49-99 album.

VAPR’s CEO Vannessa Uzo Amadi-Ogbonna played a central role in packaging the Tiwa New York show and she flew into Lagos to join Tiwa Savage in their invasion of the capital with their top class production designed to give the Abuja show much more than visited New York.

In recent times, Tiwa Savage has become a fixed item in the Nigerian pop scene, making ground breaking hits and singing her way to fame and fortune. On both sides of the Atlantic the music of Tiwa Savage has catapulted Nigeria to the super league of the music world. And the government appear to have opened their eyes to the huge potential of earning billions of dollars that will boost the country’s tottering economy. The Nigerian authorities have finally woken up to the fact that musicians can make a difference in the overall contribution to the economy of Nigeria.

They have realized like the British government did in the early 1960’s that its treasury could be heavily boosted with funds generated in America by the combination of the Beatles, Rolling Stones, Cream, Led Zepplin and multiple others enabled it to get out of the recession of those years. The Information Minister Lai Mohammed who is responsible for the cultural growth of the country has found that music and movies are vitally important if Nigeria is to grow out of its permanent dependence in oil and gas. He was recently seen in a rock concert in Lagos, paying respects to the top hierarchy of African musicians responsible for the massive global demand for Nigerian music in particular and Africa genres of music in general.

Tiwa’s sound savaging of Abuja rock fans 

There is no doubt that Tiwa Savage towers above the competition in many ways, not just because her music has hit both sides of the Atlantic with sell out shows in New York and London with awesome power, but simply because she has reached a commanding level of professionalism that is hitherto lacking in top African acts. When I went up to her 10th floor Hilton suite accompanied by her VA-PR manager, Vannessa Amadi-Ogbonna, she was busy with her hairdresser, but didn’t mind my incursion.


I wanted to know if her Abuja show was going to be any semblance of the New York 49-99 premiere of her latest single, she said that Abuja was going to get far more than the spectacular show in America. I half believed her until she unleashed the savagery of an act in the early morning of Saturday 7th December 2019 at exactly 1.27am.

Unlike the massive 5000 fans that packed the Transcorp Hilton open air concert, I was visibly worried because I had expected the show would kick-off at 7pm as earlier advertised. But no one seemed worried at the prospect of an all-night sit-in. There were plenty of food and wine for the crowd and if you were lucky to have the VIP tickets, champagne and hot drinks was flowing with some excess.

She was ushered onto the huge stage like the superstar she clearly is, first 8 girl dancers preceded her entry, the band belting some Fela induced afro beat, a lone trumpeter experimenting with some Ingo Chico (Fela’s highly rated saxophonist) riffs accompanied with percussion department that boasted of high sounding gan gan or talking drums, and a compliment of massive drums that exploded like a thunderbolt. You might think that the drum beats were a chip off the Ginger Baker/Laolu Akins drum book, but it was essentially the making of Tiwa Savage and her explosive music.

Tiwa’s repertoire of songs and dance hits included on the night were dominated by most of her work with Mavin Records. The introductory sequence involved the all-girl octet, exploding onto the huge stage, with Tiwa literarily flying into their midst to begin an explosive night of heavy rocking sound that put Abuja on notice that the Queen of Afrobeat was in town.

Compared with Fela, what I heard on this live version of Tiwa Savage concert was extraordinary. There is little doubt that there is merit in those who identify her as the Queen of Afro beat. Apart from the fact that she made the top echelons of Nigerian pop charts from her very first effort, she has continued to belt some of the finest hits in the Africa and of course around the world because she has crossed over the intercontinental barrier.

The biggest surprise of the night for me was the level of promotional virtuosity of the organisers. Who would have thought that Nigerian acts now play their open air concerts with heavy banks of speakers such that they produced the loudest possible decibel possible like seen in Europe and America. The infrastructural out lay was stupendous, judging from what happened on the Abuja night of savagery.

The stage backdrop was simply excellent with Everything SAVAGE screaming from the black background, but when Tiwa began singing, a riot of colourful mixture of artistic design and the obvious monstrosity of the frenetic act was indeed heavy. I was reminded of the Tina Turner concert at Wembley stadium I attended with three of daughters in the 1980’s. A one woman riot squad you would think, but certainly you cannot take anything away from Tiwa Savage. Little wonder that apart from the crowd of upper and middle class fans, many flew with their private jets from Lagos to see the Tiwa show in Abuja. Such is the level that the music of African origin has become, competing with every other continent anywhere else in the world.

To put it mildly, it was a show that not only captured the essence of African music but the organisation was first class. It was a night that Abuja many not forget in the nearest future.


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