Amona tete Mabo song was one of indelible songs in the album of Evangelist Ayewa. This was the album that brought Pastor Adelakun Ayewa to the limelight. Almost every recording store, Danfo Drivers, traders, and families had a copy of this album. It was indeed an album of the breakthrough. Many people don’t even know that Amona wasn’t even the band’s 1st album, and that it was actually the remix God breathed upon and catapulted the glory of the band, and which gave them international recognition.
How was the album accepted?
After the production, nobody bought it because I was not known. Baba just called us to come and he asked us to carry our load because nobody was listening to gospel songs. He said we should go and be meeting people and market the song ourselves, but as a soldier, I didn’t have that time. And later he just called me and said “I see the grace of God upon your life, even though you are a military man yet you have good character and discipline, what I will do is that I will sign you. The next one you will do, you will come, I will take you to studio and there will be an agreement between you and I. And we signed the agreement of 10kobo on a record and they don’t even do more than 1000 copies, only one 1000, when they were doing 20,000copies for Sunny Ade and Obey. And lo and behold, even that 1000 will not finish for one year; I put some under the bed in the barrack to market to people myself and also gave people to help me talk about it. They used Sunny Ade records to sell my own. Baba Ogo Oluwa came up with that plan that if you must buy 50copies of Sunny Record, you must pick 10 of Ayewa record. I was so bitter, I sat down and said Lord, what kind of life is this, but the Lord told me “where you are going is step by step, don’t be in haste. And thank God the same place they were using Sunny Ade to sell my album was the same place they used my own record to sell Juju after Amona album came out. And I thank God I was the only artist that stayed long with a record dealer, I spent 18 and ½ years with Baba Ogo Oluwa. I would have left but God told me stay. Pastor Sola Rotimi took me to OrisunIye one day and he said he’s been looking for me. But the Lord spoke to me not to leave. By that time I’ve become close to Baba Ebenezer Obey. We always travel together. And I released several albums.
Let’s talk about Amona, was it the album that brought you to limelight?
Amona was the album that brought us to limelight and that was in 1984, but I want you to note this; Amonatetemabo was first released in 1980. Four years later, the Lord spoke to me in my dream. In that dream, somebody just walked up to me and said “Go and remix that song, let the whole world hear it” and at the same time I heard it clearly in English in that dream that “I want to showcase you to the world” and I woke up, sat down on my bed. I started ruminating that even in Nigeria, Hausa, Ibo couldn’t hear what I was singing, so how will I communicate with the white people and you said you want to showcase me to the whole world? Already we were preparing for another album. Then I went to baba that God spoke to me that we should remix Amona. Baba said, “I cannot argue with you because whatever you say always comes to pass, it’s left to you”. Then I called my people and the issue generated a lot of argument that people will think we don’t have songs again. So we argued until we got to the studio. I met Baba Obey and I told him that I want to use one of his guitarists, Tao, and Baba Ebenezer Obey said, “You are the owner of all of them and they love you, I will tell Tao to come and help you, and that is how Tao came in during the 2ndAmona, so we got to the studio with an argument. And God bless Late Lak Adeniran, he was the best Engineer so far then. Very cool-headed, he will never argue with anybody. We recorded with lots of caution and zeal because at that time if you make any mistake you’ll have to start all over again. That time we didn’t even do much rehearsal. Even then I didn’t know much about music, I’m a military man, and my own is to compose, but I always sing off-hand, up till this stage. I will write it down but I always sing off hand. God has been so good to me. But one thing I normally do is that if I want to go to the studio I must first go to the mountain to seek his face for 7 days. So it was during that prayer the revelation came to remix Amonatetewa. So many people don’t even know Amona is volume 9. They think it’s our 1st but we give all the glory. It was grace that brought all these things you are looking at. Grace, a success without labor, something you don’t work for, something you don’t merit, something you didn’t even plan for.