NB: This piece was first written by the author, two years ago. It is reproduced here unedited (except the title), to honour the memory of the iconic raggae musician, Majek Fashek, who shedded mortality for immortality on 1 June, 2020.
Many mortals came into this world, making little or no impact, not even on their immediate community and the people that come across their way. Such set of people, at death, leave the world space unnoticed and unsung.
On the other hand, some lowly-born attained greatness by a dint of hardwork, diligence and commitment to what makes life and living a worthy endeavour. This category of people often makes meaningful impact on the people through their chosen careers.
More often, some of these people, mostly in the arts world, would leave the terrestrial space in a blazing hail of glory, leaving the rest of humanity mourning their exits and yearning for their possible return.
They exist in all parts of the world, cutting across all human endeavours…music, arts, literature, medicine, education, sports and even artisanship. Here in our clime are famous and legendary musicians too numerous to mention.
Just midnight yesterday, 01/06/2020, a raggae music icon, Majekodunmi Fasheke, popularly known as Majek Fashek, one of the greatest musicians Nigeria bequeathed to the world in the mould of his alter ego, legendary Robert Nesta Marley (aka Bob Marley), followed the path of the mortals. After years of battling with health issues, the Benin-born raggae artist from Ilesa, Osun State, joined his great music forebears and bidded the world goodnight.
The great rainmaker, Majek Fashek, shed mortality for immortality. His human foibles and fallibilities notwithstanding, he was here and impacted on us positively…through pure and undiluted uniting African philosophical music that dwelt on the essence of humanity-love.
Using one of the most powerful forces on earth, music, Fashek sought to bring the much-desired peace and unity to our troubled world. Across all the corners of the world, he used his sonorous voice to bring out the pervading biases and vices across all racial and ethic divides.
How I wish the ego-bloated President Donald Trump of the United States of America (USA) can listen to his track, So Long, Too Long, and come to the realisation that, indeed, Africa and Africans are truly at the forefront of the quest for global peace.
Fashek tried to remove the pervading post-colonial mentality ravaging the heart and mindset of many African. He sang about the presence of destitutes and beggars on the street of New York City. How can we easily forget how he used his track, Majek Fashek Ina New York, to bring it to our consciousness that the so-called Great US is after all not an Eldorado?
The great son of Africa would definitely remain a tormentor-in-chief and a thorn in the flesh of the loud-mouth and loquacious President of the United States of America, Donald Trump as well as other supremacist leaders in the western world. So Long, Too Long, will forever prick the conscience of these sets of people who see the Black as nothing but just a bit higher than the lower animal.
A creative master with great lyrics, Majek further brought out the deep spirituality in him with his song, The Promised Land. In that track, he made humanity to know that such an utopian society exists not anywhere in the physical…not in the US, the UK…neither in any part of Europe, nor Asian…not even in Africa or any other part of the world. Rather, he made us to know that the Promised Land lies within us…finding fulfilment within ourselves and living within our contentment.
The Rainmaker sang and prayed for a new world order in which peace would reign with his lyric, Holy Spirit.
Majek Fashek, you have acted well your own part in the yet futile and abortive efforts at making this world a better place for you and me and the entire human race (apologies to another music great, Weirdman Michael Jackson).
As you are on your way to meet with your Creator, I hope you will meet with your forebears who, at one time or the other, were in the vanguard of the quest for a world where respect for human dignity, rule of law, equal right and justice would be the sinequanon for global peace. I hope you will be warmly received by the great man of peace, Martin Luther King Jnr., the legendary raggae King, Bob Marley, the great Madiba, Nelson Mandela and other great souls who once dominated this terrestrial plane like colossus, preaching peaceful co-existence unlaced with enmity or bitterness.
Majekodunmi Fasheke, may your soul be at peace with your Maker. Rest in peace Majek Fashek, a great son of Africa bequeathed to a troubled world.