AFRIMA Moments African pop stars set Dakar on fire. … How Psquare delighted Senegalese fans and expressed regret for breaking up
Burna Boy, Wizkid, and Davido weren’t present at the award ceremony.
If there is one thing that the tens of thousands of music fans who flocked to the Dakar Arena in Senegal over the weekend won’t soon forget, it is the jaw-dropping performances by some of Africa’s finest pop performers at the recently finished All Africa Music Awards, or AFRIMA.
The glamorous awards event that took place on Sunday night will be remembered. The finest part of the four-day festival, despite other noteworthy events that came before it, were the electrifying performances, and this year’s roster was strong.
The highlight of the evening was seeing Senegalese fans of the Nigerian-born rock duo Psquare reunited with them on stage following their breakup around five years prior.
Their French-speaking supporters, like many other fans of the music pair throughout Africa and beyond, were unable to contain their love and excitement as they witnessed their musical heroes astound them with their trademark dance moves and stagecraft.
In fact, the minute the singing team came out from backstage to finish the event, the 15,000-seat Dakar Arena, burst into an uncontrolled frenzy.
It’s reasonable to conclude that Psquare’s performance that evening was unequivocal evidence that they had reclaimed their former prominence in the African music industry. After years of being apart, the two were performing together on stage, and the audience couldn’t control their enthusiasm. It was an occasion unlike any other.
The pair started the show with “Chop My Money” off their 2015 album “Get Squared” and their 2007 smash song, “Do Me,” starring Waje. They were dressed in white coats over denim.
But when they played “E No Easy” off their 2011 album “The Invasion,” everyone in the room got up and started dancing and singing along. It was in fact a joyful reunion of sorts for P-Square fans in Senegal who had been itching to see their idols share the stage again since their reunion the previous year.
The pair expressed regret to their adoring crowd throughout their performance for their five-year separation.
“Psquare was absent for five years, but Mr. P. and Rude Boy kept the group going. I appreciate your patience, gentlemen. We owe you guys apologies, yet even after we split up, we continued to make music,” the pair said.
After their performance, Mr. P spoke with our reporter and recounted Psquare’s prediction from ten years prior that African music will dominate the global music scene.
“Observe what is occurring right now. We are proud to be among the pioneers since we have popularized African music over the world.
When asked how he missed the years they spent not performing together, Mr. P responded, “It’s normal, but the wonderful thing is that even when we split up, we maintained the name and the team.”
“Like my brother, I helped Psquare remain active while I was performing my solo tunes. But despite the lack of a new album or song, we regrouped. We basically concentrated on traveling the world, which we accomplished. Mr. P made a hint that a new album will be out shortly.
The house was knocked down by Black Sherif!
Psquare was not the only act to dazzle the crowd that evening. Young Ghanaian rapper Black Sherif, Nigeria’s Tiwa Savage, Mali’s Rokia Kone, Viviane Chidi, Wally B, and Senegal’s Youssou N’dour, among other performers, all took turns showcasing what they had to offer on stage.
In instance, Black Sherif briefly took down the house when he sang “Kweku the Traveler,” one of his biggest hits, that night. As long as his enthusiastic performance lasted, he got everyone up and dancing. The young rapper, the lone artist from Ghana to excite the audience that night, was decked out in an all-black leather jacket and pants that were matched by white shoes, and he did not disappoint.