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Idols girl storms back 8/13/2007
Abrewa Nana, the kind hearted and distinctive Ghanaian Hip-Life icon is in the news again.

The lady, who made more than history with her three albums which took the country by storm, is set to launch her fourth album she is currently working on with fellow Idols West Africa judges, Dede and Dan Foster.

Though Nana’s name has only become known to Nigerians since the inception of the West Africa Idols competition this year, her popularity in her home country is undisputable, especially among Hip-Life music fanatics.

The Hip-Life icon has spent most of her life in Accra, Saltpond and Cape Coast under the loving protection of her mum, with whom she lived, and sternly guided by her more distant father.

“I grew up with my mum alone because my dad was never really there,” she recalls in an interview with the Idols magazine.

The 27 year old made her first visit to Nigeria in January this year as one of the three judges of the Idols West Africa competition, and without any trace of delay took to the country.

There is no place sweeter than one’s home but to the unbiased Nana, “Accra is nice and quiet, but Lagos is far more lively”.

She revealed that she had caught the eyes of M-Net late last year and was asked to submit her profile for the role.

“I had been watching American Idol but I never knew Africa could have an idols competition too”, said the elevated blonde.

Abrewa Nana was invited for an interview together with Sammy (of Big Brother fame) and some other big names in Ghana; “and in the end, they chose me”, she said.

She won the Hip-Life song of the year 2001 and the Best Female Vocalist at the Ghana Music Awards the following year.

With her feat, Nana was without any doubt, the perfect candidate to represent Ghana on the judging panel.

By going Hip-Life, she saw the challenge as a bold departure from the gospel or traditional music that had engulfed all the female musicians.

The multi-million cedi question, to which her admirers demand an answer, is how she became a musician. Nana said she was inspired by the legendary African group, Osibisa and Ghana’s Hip-Life king, Reggie Rockstone.

“I started my musical odyssey as a young girl miming to songs like Makaa Maka and Me Na Me kae” , she stated.

At a very tender age, she started arranging and recording her own music, even as a business accounting student at the Takoradi Polytechnic.

She confessed that the journey had been slow, given the conservative attitude of the Ghanaian towards innovation.

“When we get used to one thing, it is very difficult for us to switch to another”, she said.

Nana is not pleased with the high level of patronage given to Western musicians at the expense of the local idols.

But that notwithstanding, the Ghanaian icon braved the storm and released her first album, Sagaa, in 2000 and her second, Maba in 2004, all to rave reviews.

She said, “Hip-Hop is good and when we mix it with our local Ghanaian sounds, it will not be lost, and people will hear our music and they will know it comes from Ghana”.

Nana has lots of respect for Nigeria’s 2face with whom she performed during her latest visit to the country.

About the competition, Nana said she was impressed and admits that the exposure she had as a judge helped to develop her own career.

Any Adam in her life? “My boyfriend cheated on me with my best friend”, she recollected with nostalgic feeling.

She went on to say, “When I confronted her, she said it was not her fault and he said the devil made him do it; so was I to blame?” she quizzed.

On her future plans, Abrewa Nana revealed that she is currently working on the fourth album with fellow judge Dede, the Fela look-alike Nigerian who is married to a Ghanaian called Esi and lives in Accra.


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