Cover Stories, Entertainment

Crisis Looms In Fuji House – As controversy rages over who created the genre


The comment of Fuji king, Alhaji Wasiu Ayinde, also known as K1 De Ultimate, on the widely believed creator of fuji, late Alhaji Sikiru Ayinde (Barrister), describing him as just a modernizer and not the creator of the genre as he claimed during his life time is generating furor.

There has been generating heated arguments among Fuji fans, and most have described K1’s statement as misnomer and an attempt to fuel another crisis in the genre.

A music marketer, Alhaji Hakeem who has been in the trade for years expressed disappointment in K1, arguing that the Ogun born entertainer’s claim to know the history of Fuji better than his boss, mentor and godfather is rubbish.

“I don’t expect such a negative statement against Barrister from K1 who claimed to be his music godson. And I am sure, no right thinking person will believe that because this is a man you started your career with as a parker. I could remember he said something similar in his album he released in 2007, Fuji Flavour. But during his 50th birthday celebration, he apologised before Barrister. And to me, he can’t claim to know the history of the genre better than his boss. So, there’s element of hypocrisy in his statement.

“I knew Ayinde Barrister well. He too had acknowledged all the people K1 referred to in his album. These people were not Fuji singers but Were which was the origin of fuji. They’re all Lagosians but none of them ever called his music Fuji but Were. It’s Barrister that turned Were to Fuji in the early 70’s. And since, all others followed suit, including Kollington Ayinla who happened to be Barrister’s best friend and later, his arch rival till the man died in 2010. Kollington was always at war with Barrister over who created Fuji but he also lost out in the public assessment of his facts because he later took music as a career fully through the influence of Barrister. I learnt he wouldn’t have left the Army if not Barrister. I think K1 just wants to reopen another book of crisis in the genre and before you know it, people like Obesere, Saidi Osupa, Shefiu Alao and others will be abusing him.

“If I were K1, I wouldn’t have said that publicly, after all what the man had done in his life. Let’s even say there was a quarrel between them before the death of Barrister, that would have been a history because it’s not morally and culturally right to continue fighting the dead or discrediting him after all God has blessed you through that man who brought you up since the age of 8. So, what does he stand to gain from that?”

Another Fuji fan, Isaac Adelowo said, “I am a follower of Fuji and all the evolving events around it for decades. I am in my early 60’s, and I think I can tell a little about the genre. I don’t think Wasiu is correct concerning his history of Fuji. It’s true Were has been existing even before Ayinde Barrister started singing. So, Barrister didn’t create Were. But when we talk of changing Were to Fuji, I think I will give it to Barrister because no one knew anything called Fuji until Barrister came up with the name in early 7o’s. So, I think it’s unfair to deny the man the credit after his death.

“But one thing I suspect is that K1 just wants to create an avenue to cause another fake crisis so that the system will be heated up and music marketers will be smiling to the banks just like it happened at the peak of crisis between Ayinde Barrister and Kollington Ayinla. Then, K1, Saidi Osupa and Pasuma. To me, every other history apart from the one I knew for long is fake and unaccepted.”

However, Encomium Weekly got across to Kollington Ayinla, popularly addressed as Kebe N Kwara, a couple of days back on the issue, and he corroborated K1’s story. He added that Barrister and himself didn’t create Fuji, they only modernized it.

“Wasiu’s history of Fuji is correct in his little knowledge of the genre. No one created Fuji between Sikiru and myself. Both of us are modernizers, not creators. He didn’t create Fuji, he only enjoyed calling himself Fuji creator which was one of the things we used to quarrel on when he was alive. I have also told history of Fuji in one of my albums, No Shaking. You can get a copy and listen to it very well.”

Meanwhile, the Fuji maestro once told ENCOMIUM Weekly in one of his many interviews with us that if not Ayinde Barrister, he would have become a gate man. He told us further that it was his late friend, Ayinde Barrister who mounted pressure on him to quit the Nigerian Army for music as a career after Barrister had released a couple of albums just to substantiate his claim that a soldier can as well be a career musician. He also told us that late Ayinde Barrister was the first among them to release an album called Fuji though they both started as Were musicians. He also admitted that Barrister was three years older than him.

Also, Baba Alagbado, as Kollington is also known, publicly acknowledged Barrister’s as Fuji creator in December 2015 during the 5th anniversary of Barrister death which held at Time Square Event Centre, Ikeja, Lagos. He said the attitude of Fuji musicians towards the event was a disappointment to him, and that if they could do that to the person who created the genre they’re all benefiting from, that means that’s what they would after him.

But when we probed him further on this, he denied saying anything of such.

” I never said so. How would I say Sikiru created Fuji. He was just a modernizer just like myself.”

This, however, prompted us to get back to one of Ayinde Barrister’s children, Samsideen Balogun for further clarification on Kollington’s denial. He said, “I don’t believe Alhaji Kollington can say that. He was at my father’s 5th anniversary, and he addressed the audience that day. His speech is on record. He said it openly that Ayinde Barrister, his friend, created the genre which all of them eventually became its beneficiaries today. Don’t worry, I will soon post everything on YouTube.”

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