Afropolitan Vibes is a monthly music concert that holds at Freedom Park on Lagos Island every third Friday of the month. Co-produced by Ade Bantu and Abby Ogunsanya, the concert is a platform that promotes musical originality with influences from Afro-beat, Afro funk, Afro hip-hop, Highlife music and Afro-pop.
Unique to Afropolitan Vibes is the prompt schedule of events and its own signature palm wine. Concert goers find it a place to unwind to graceful rhythmic aura with freshly tapped palm wine on the morning of every edition. Typically the opening act begins at 7pm with DJ Raybee Brown to hype concert goers for the main live performances. At 8pm, live band performs with guest artists to close out with DJ Java for the after-party slot till midnight.
The February edition hosted four featured guest artistes, Falana, Blackman Akeeb Kareem Sound Sultan and Oranmiyan, all sharing the stage with the Bantu collective band, a 13-member ensemble. The host and band member, Ade Bantu entertained guests, informing concert goers on the achievements in recent months, indicating that March will be the 34th edition of Afropolitan Vibes held to date. He began the evening excitements when he invited his unknowing brother, Biodun, on stage to perform “Teacher no teach me nonsense.” Biodun was initially hesitant announcing that he had not rehearsed for any kind of performance, but regardless of that fact, the duo exuded such synergy and perfect mastery of their craft.
The guest performances drew lines from common social occurrences to societal maladies, replete with puns that inspired dance and introspection. Singer and songwriter, Falana graced everyone with her vocal dexterity, proving to be a sterling mastery over her art. She sang “Ode to the Dreamer” and “Gbotie” accompanied with the rhythmic beats of her custom cajon; a boxlike percussion instrument. Blackman Akeeb Kareem’s long absence from the Nigerian music scene stunned everyone with his resonating sounds and meaningful music of the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s, while exuding both maturity and style on stage. He was followed by Sound Sultan, who took Afropolitan to his peak. Oromiyan’s Yoruba Reggae music is typically moralistic to which he sang about the dignity of labour and how proud survival is tied to it. Nonetheless, one cannot deny the dancing rhythmic tunes that all reggae songs possess.
The Afropolitan Vibes is definitely in a class of its own; a grand stage in reviving the essence of good showmanship of live band music.