Interview with a Ghanaian artist and musician: Worlasi by Kofi Acquah


Hello, I am Kofi Acquah and welcome to The Village Thinkers-Ghana.

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WORLASI : I’m Worlasi, thank you for having me.

K.A : It’s a privilege to have a personal encounter with such an inspiring and talented artiste like you. Besides, great minds like yours are not easy to come by. Could you please tell me more about Worlasi?

WORLASI : Worlasi was born and raised in Ghana, and he hails from Agbozume, volta region. He is a figure painting artist and also a musician.

K.A : Great. How did the whole thing of your music career began? Have you ever dreamt of becoming an artiste?

WORLASI : Well, it all began after Secondary School. I was at home one day feeling bored, so I wanted to do something. I tuned in to Yfm, and interestingly some music were banging on air. In fact, some weren’t good at all. On hearing that, I said to myself; “O’ this is not good, I can do it”. I began playing around with it anytime I was bored, and as time went by, I developed interest in it and felt the need to polish it. Though, I have never dreamt of becoming an artiste but knew I will become an artist rather. Because I always keep(t) drawing and painting. I actually knew nothing about music.

K.A : So, are you also into anything else apart from music?
If yes, how do you juggle them together, knowing well that it’s not an easy task?

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WORLASI : Yes, I paint and do drawing. I’m an artist. A figure painting artist. But you know, music in Ghana doesn’t really pay well. And I’m not doing the art because music is not paying well. I do art because that was what I schooled for. That is exactly my field. Music only served as a hobby, it was just by the way. I don’t fumble in anyway, combining all these. Because I already and also have a job whilst music is just my hobby. Although they are sometimes interlaced and seem stressful, but everything under the sun has got its pros and cons. Again, I do music when I’m bored and also jump to art when I’m bored.

K.A : What genre of music do you do?

WORLASI : All I can say is a mixture of soul and rap. But its African flavour makes me call it an Afro music. I sometimes term it as Afro rap or Afro soul. But I know I’m doing music and people have it. I don’t really bother myself with the genre.

K.A : What inspires you the more to pour out your heart and share your thoughts through your music?

WORLASI : I’m inspired by what goes on around me. The experiences of people, my personal experiences and my instrumentals inspire me. I make my own rhythms. Yes, I make the instrumentals for my music all by myself. Anytime I finish ‘cooking’ a beat, I sit back, listen to it and that inspires me to write.

K.A : Worlasi, are you a poet?
Do you in anyway believe the saying that, writers are not paid?
And what do you say to that?

WORLASI : I don’t even know whether I’m a poet. All I know is that, I write and listen to music. *Sighs*, I even don’t know how to put it. The fact is that, I don’t have any basis in neither music nor poetry. All that I do come straight from within me, and I do it because I feel it’s right. Honestly speaking, I don’t think I have what it takes to be a poet. I don’t want to call myself a poet, because I won’t be able to answer questions if I’m called upon, so far as poetry is concerned. I’m just doing music.
Anyway, talking about people not getting paid, I think it has become the status quo. It cuts across almost everywhere. I myself am not paid, and I’m sure there are some mainstream artistes who are also not getting paid. However, I don’t know what I can do about it. We just have to keep working hard. We must let them know that we are important. You can’t just go to someone and ask him/her for money. You let them know, that they need you so they have to pay you. That’s how it’s supposed to be. So you work hard and let them know that we are worth it. We have to come together, write together and let them know what we have. Then, they will pay for what we have. But we can’t just sit down and be relaxed; expecting them to pay us any amount they want. Yeah, you understand? I don’t know what’s going on actually, but the issue of not getting paid and paid well is everywhere. It’s not only poets/writers. Other disciplines fall victims to this canker. For instance, carpenters, masons et cetera suffer the same thing. It’s up to us to prove ourselves. Let us come together, work together and let them know what we deserve.

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K.A : Looking at the journey so far, have you encountered some obstacles?
If yes, how did you overcome them?
In other words, how did you react towards them?

WORLASI : Obstacles? I don’t think so. Apart from money which all of us need it sometimes for something, I haven’t gone through any serious hardship so far. Even money doesn’t get my way, because I never had money when I started. My label is not giving me billions, but they’re helping with the little they have. We only need as much as we need to do what we want to do, to prove to the world what we have. There are people who don’t have anything, yet, the whole world is getting known of them. It’s only by hardwork and commitment. So I can’t say money is an obstacle. No! However, I don’t think I have been through any hardship. But I believe the fact that, there are bad times and good times. And I don’t think I’ve been through bad times enough to term it as obstacles. So far, I think everything is moving on smoothly. I take everything that happens to me softly and get back to work.

K.A : Amazing! How do you see the music industry?
And do you target specific people you want your music to reach?

WORLASI : Hmmm… Charley, I don’t know what’s going on in the industry ooo…. Sometimes I feel like I don’t care about it. The fact is that, I don’t have the time to be nosy about what’s going on in the music industry. Yes, I don’t. I’m doing the art because it’s what I do. That’s what I focus my mind, soul, strength and everything on. I don’t have the time. Excuse me to say that; “I don’t care about what’s going on there”. If it’s affecting me, fine. That’s cool. Then, I have to maybe care about it.
Moreover, inasmuch as I’m doing music and I’m reaching my fans, that’s it. I don’t have special people I want my music to reach. “I want the people to reach to my music “. And my music is reaching people who have to listen to it. I can’t choose the kind of people my music should reach. It’s music, and anyone who understands it can connects. It’s for you.

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K.A : Apart from what inspires you, are there some brains behind the scenes who also back the movement?

WORLASI : So far, lyrics writing, beats making and everything is done by myself. I don’t actually have any brain behind it. Once in a while, ‘Kadi Tay’, a friend of mine sends in some ideas if I want to write about this and that. Nobody has written anything for me. I’m still working harder. People, for once in a blue moon send in stuffs, but I haven’t put anything out there that somebody has written for me. No. My management also sometimes put forth some ideas about what to write about. In sum, all I’m saying is that, all writings and everything are done by me, but some ideas sometimes come in.

K.A : Alright Worlasi, where did you school?

WORLASI : I went to Saint Stephen’s catholic school, proceeded to Pope John’s Senior High and finally furthered my education at Takoradi Polytechnic.

K.A : Could you recall one interesting incident that has ever happened in your life?

WORLASI : Interesting? Hehe… Charley. I quite remember my maiden stage performance with Tintin at T-Poly, where they booed me and told us to get off the stage. We were performing the song; “Charley what’s up?”, and I think the video is on youtube.

K.A : What do you intend achieving with music?

WORLASI : I want to make a difference in music. I want people to know and respect what we have. The main aim is to change lives. I want people to call in and say; “O’ Worlasi, because of your music, this and that have happened”. I want us to be great and better people. In that, I don’t understand why we, as Africans, always move backwards. I want my music to give strength to the people. I want positive attitudes. They have to be strong, hardworking, intelligent, creative and more of greatness. That’s the main aim of my music. I want my music to reach the right people. Not necessarily reaching out to the whole wide world at large, but to those who need it. Let them have that change which will benefit them.

K.A : You know what Worlasi?
I have finally come to the most hanging part of this interview. I have kept an internal conflict as to when at all will my favourite question land. Now, this is the time……hehe…..
Can you whisper to my hearing, your favourite food?

WORLASI : My favourite food is banku with okro stew, filled with crabs, fresh fish and ‘wole’. I dont like ‘poku’, but salmon is cool. And I don’t like plenty palm oil too.

K.A : Who is your favourite female and male artiste both locally and internationally?

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WORLASI : Favourite Ghanaian male artiste? Charley a lot. I respect M.anifest. His writing skill is dope, and Wanlov. Infact, their works are amazing. Those two guys, *sighs*, I can’t choose one and leave the other. However, there are others like; EL, Kojo-Cue, Wanzam etc. But so far, M.anifest and Wanlov (Fokn Boiz). Their arts are dope. I used to like Irene when it comes to female artistes rating, but I’ve stop hearing from her. Right now, I have begun knowing Nana Yaa, (Pat Thomas’ daughter). I think she is the best female vocalist I’ve ever heard in Ghana. I think she is Dope! Dope! Dope! I’ll pick her over. So far, Nana Yaa is dope.
Internationally, I would go for Kendrick Lamar and Hopsin. For female, I think I like Rihanna.

K.A : I am a seasonal supporter of FC Barcelona and Kumasi Asante Kotoko. How about you?
Both locally and internationally?

WORLASI : I’m not a football fun at all. I only love Barça for their skill of playing. They play well sometimes. That’s all. Actually, I don’t watch football, because I’m not a football fun.

K.A : Well Worlasi, I think I have learnt a lot from you. But before I leave you, what do you have for the young, up and coming artistes out there who have been touched by your experience so far?

WORLASI : Eeii! Hmmmm… This question, hehe… Young, up and coming artistes? I’m also up and coming artiste ooo… Charley. I’ve not gotten to anywhere yet at all. I’ve only released my first project last year in September. I’m still up and coming. I’ve not been in this game long enough to advise somebody on what to do. Moreover, everyone has his/her own ways of doing things. So I can’t show somebody what to do. All that I can say is to do what comes from the heart. Focus on your fans, and always give out to them; the best you can. One has to also respect his/her art and make sure he does not disappoint his fans and himself as well. You understand? It’s all about what you are doing, and that people are falling in love with your work. When you keep that going on, charley, everything will be cool. You feel fulfilled. It’s not about the money and the awards. I don’t care about that. Maybe a young, up and coming artiste wants that. That’s why I can’t actually give advice. Everybody and what he wants to become, and how to be seen in the music industry.

K.A : Thanks Worlasi, for granting us a space for this thrilling interview. We look forward to seeing you at the grammy awards in the future.

WORLASI : Thanks for having me too, Kofi Acquah.

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About Writer

Kofi Acquah; born in May 1994 and a student, hails from the central region of Ghana. He is one refined voice of poetic and artistic word-score. Kofi is an Author and a poetry performer. He is a co-author of the current trending poetry anthology of 3 Emerging Ghanaian Poets dubbed “PALM LEAVES” published by Forte Publications, Liberia &Thailand. His participation in writing contests has thus, earned him a certificate in an online American Poetry Marathon show. Some of his works have also appeared on prominent literary online publications such as Poetry Soup, Tuck Magazine, Allpoetry, Poem Hunter, Stage Afrik, Lunaris Review, Best New Poems and thepoetswithoutlimits. He is an active board member and linguist of “The Village Thinkers” an Africanism Poetry Movement based in Cape Coast-Ghana. Kofi’s attention has also been received on Radio stations such as Cape Fm 93.3 in Ghana and Fifthwall Radio, Florida-USA.

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I hid my love in my blood


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I hid my love in my blood

i hid my love in a stream
of satless blood.
there she goes
unseen in the clads of breath.
there she sit in the leaves
of million airs.
she is a file of darkness,
a page of shade
flamed in existential beauty.
the night birds are home now,
their songs undiluted
in nectar in dew of wet eyes.
day breaks and she sprouts
out of a butterfly’s heart.
midnight dies and she sweeps
her soul across the inocence
of the early sun.
i hid my love in my blood
not for the touch of the winds!
I hid my love in my blood
not for the steals of the subdued tongue!
but for her petal laughter
that should she die, she might be
resummoned once more
into her left scar in my flesh
with every drop of my blood.

#TheVillageThinker

The Tree And Man


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The Tree And Man

I.

There are trees
And there are trees.
Some have spirits, they live longer
Fighting the fist of death
Gasping in the rains
And holding the ruins of the harmattan . . .
Some have souls, they are sentimental
They cry during every summer
They cherish their broken hearts
Never nursing the pains
From stubborn satanic misconceptions . . .

II.
Every rope of man
Is a trap
for the neck.
We see life and the haunt begins
We dream death and the love regerminates . . .
All things are animate
The rock
The untarred road
The dust wired net
The lost shoe
The rain beating sign post
Are parables that shall unite this memory
When the tale is told once more . . .

#TheVillageThinker

A Song For A Beloved


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A Song For A Beloved

Two days today,
was the waking of your memories.
the million memories you kept
inside the feel of our minds.

we saluted!
we embraced!
Yet the fast legs of tears
would not let our eyes settle.

It was just yesterday
we recalled you in our huts.
the weather was hostile
the moon was mournful
even our shadows
which roamed about in mute,
nearly deserted our spirits.

Your smeared memories of suddendom,
we couldn’t hold!
we couldn’t bear!

Yaa,
when you hear the winds
take her broom of sanity
in the godly morn,
look no where, stare no land
for amongst the dust
shall linger the twirling songs of us
pacifying the hands
that sent you packing.

#TheVillageThinker
#NanaArhinTsiwah 

Ten Thousand Chant Songs


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Ten Thousand Chant Songs

why have we ruined the chant songs
in the stage of our mother’s breasts?
why have we bought rotten kola nuts
when we had just a night to offer libation?

we have stood behind this river for far too long
and the prayers have not been offered! 
we have watched for our fathers’ apparitions
and not even the priest has an idea of their airs.

i, abeiku,
the son of the thirsty hunter
knock with his teeth
asking why the Gods have left us
to this fate of flies

Nana Arhin Tsiwah
© All Rights Reserved, 2016

Prayer Of A Boy By The Roadside


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Prayer Of A Boy By The Roadside. 

his lung wrote home
while his face wrote solitude.

here was a soul, lost
amongst boundless feathers
falling off a lone bird’s tail.

his eyes greyed the half-seated moon
and you could read
memories holding themselves
to the feel of an aged-past.

the tuckiness of history
panting down his scored skin,
sent peaceless pieces of pains
which whispered through the exhaust
of wooden vehicular fumes
that fast passed him in gossip.

behind his reddish-dusty hairless head,
a chapter of his prayer wrote:
do not circumcise me..
do not break me..
do not curse me..
for i hold within me
uncured illnesses of a broken home.

© Nana Arhin Tsiwah
All Rights Reserved, 2016
image credit: national geographic tv

victimised..


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victimised.

every night bleeds oracles
of You. You
an endless river
that lies under soaked
emotions.
no wonder adam was wounded through
his left broken rib.
no wonder his filament
still dances with men. You
are radiant, beautiful
like an Arabian moon.
You are fireworks that lits steets of fragrance
that defiles minds
under illusive pills of rainbows

i am a victim. we are all victims
victims to this vacuum hallmarks
hallmarks that write pictures
hanging on broken
branches.

should the moon come
to hang near my wooden window,
i wound pluck a feather
from her melanin,
i would exchange this lonely heart
for her auras
for i am a victim,
a victim to this story of eve…

© Nana Arhin Tsiwah

maame…A SONG FOR MOTHERHOOD


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Maame

there is a story we cannot
tell quietly at night
there are erred stories
we cannot finish writing
they hang losely under sagged
pointed breasts of
motherhood.. 

whenever these songs find
their feet into my ears,
it breaches wilting hymen
of voicless breath
of ailing mothers..

¶The Village Thinker

I wrote Abomination-


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I wrote abomination!

I wrote a poem.
It would never be read.
It is made of paganism
and plastic darkened world of lament.
It is a poem of curled broken lines.
The church would ridicule it!
The mosque would fight me on…  The saint would laugh it over.
No publishing house would dare it horns on.
For it contains lies,
it contains damming statements that collides
and erodes the many errors
that humanity have been made
to swallow and overbloat.
It would mock and rebuke the living.
It shall praise the dead.
It shall frown on life
like a forensic tonic.
It shall admonish death
like the first suckle of a baby
from penetrating breasts.
I know what sentences awaits me in the holographic holocaust of society. But in all, like a slave of this empty life, I don’t care, it won’t matter to me. For I know, not everyone is a student of Shakespearean nonsense or the Awoonor crying errors.

#TheVillageThinker

Poetic Chromosome


Poetic Chromosome
(For Josie Amofaah Nketiah)

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how infinite is the question
of why
when it opens in our hearts
and flood the soft stories
in our mouths
how often does each letter read
and respond to the quest
of our aching
souls?

like a milling machine,
it numbers on our fingers
and correlates in our livers

–like numbered limbs,
you feel another leaf
from a naked tree
with no song;
and emptied writer.

there are questions
we find no answers
and emotions
we find no filters

they hang like looms
under magnified breasts
of a beloved mother
they syndicate like petals
under tanned shape of roses
and still
the answers are
unknown

like love letters
painted under pianos,
we find no room
we find no road
we find no hope
until the oceans
in our whirling hearts
turn GREEN..

© Nana Arhin Tsiwah