Born in 1945 on 31st March in Obo Kwahu, Nana Ampadu was a Ghanaian music legend who has credits to numerous popular highlife songs and is known to have produced over 800 songs in his music career.
Nana Ampadu became popular in Ghana after he released a song titled “Ebi Ti Yie” which was believed to be a song that was criticizing the rule of the then National Liberation Council in Ghana. The song however disappeared from the airwaves and returned after the military rule in 1969.
The music legend who was actively involved in the political leadership in Ghana, in 1992, he composed a song for the late Jerry John Rawlings criticizing and an attempt for his disqualification for being half Scottish, he also composed a song for the National Democratic Congress (NDC) to use as a campaign song in the 1992 election.
Nana Ampadu in 1973 participated in a nationwide music competition, won, and was given the title “Odwontofoohene” or “Singer-in-Chief”. He formed a musical band in 1963 called the “African Brothers Band” which was in line which Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah’s vision of African Unity. Eddie Donkor who was popularly known as Senior Eddie Donkor was part of the founding members of the band. The band was renamed in 1973 to the African Brothers International Band.
Nana Ampadu won several awards and honors in his music career including the Grand Medal of the Volta Civil Division in 1977, Odwontofoohene by the Arts Council of Ghana in 1973, and the first-ever National Dance Band Competition in 1972. He also composed the theme song for the “Operation Feed Yourself” campaign by the military National Redemption Council in 1972.
Nana Ampadu passed on at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the Legon Hospital in Accra on 28th September 2021 from an undisclosed illness.
By: Caleb Asante Annor