Majek Fashek: The rain maker lives on
On Tuesday, June 2, 2020 a big star dropped from the sky of Nigeria’s entertainment industry. The country lost one of its musical legends, Majekodunmi Fasheke, popularly known as Majek Fashek, to the cold hands of death. The 55 year-old reggae icon, one of the few remaining of his generation in Nigeria, had been hospitalized in the United States for a while. He transited to the world beyond in his sleep while battling an undisclosed sickness.
Majek Fashek, born to a Yoruba father and an Edo mother began his music carrier right from the church as member of the choir of white garment church before he joined the group, Jastix. He placed Nigeria on the global entertainment map with his unique vocal, a resemblance of the global reggae king, Bob Marley.
In between 1987 and 2006, Majek Fashek released the album, Prisoner of Conscience, I&I Experience, So long, Too Long, American Invasion, and various collaborative works with international artists. His albums had various hit singles like ‘Send Down the Rain’, which became a household tune in Nigeria and the African continent, ‘Free Africa, Free Mandela’ was also one of the hits in his second album. He also had various albums to his credit.
His music which is reggae by genre, preached social advancement, love, peace, and spiritual liberation. He deployed his music as a weapon for activism. During the apartheid, he joined prominent Africans to call for the release of then incarcerated Nelson Mandela with his music.
Music lovers who fancied oldies took to the social media to eulogise the music legend. On the twitter sphere Nigerians took time to praise the work of the legend. “MajekFashek was an icon, true heir to the legacy of Bob Marley in my eyes with his deep lyrics addressing issues like social injustice and an almost pristine spirituality or a certain morality. His 2005 album was for me the immortal classic in that regard, now he rests,” Demola Olarewaju twitted.
@Von_Bismack twitted, “The Rain maker is dead and it’s raining heavily. Majek still sent rains while he travels home for the last time. Rest in peace, Majek Fashek.
Also popular Afropop artist, Innocent ‘2baba’ Idibia, who featured in the remix of one of his hit songs, ‘Holy Spirit’ posted on Instagram “Woke up to this sad news. Bless you Majek Fashek, many of the new school artists might not grasp your importance, but I appreciate what you represent in Naija music history. RIP LION. I know you and Baba Fela and Ras Kimono, and Olando Owoh and Sunny Okosun and Oliver de Coque are reminiscing about the good old days. Bless you all and many more that paved the way. Your struggles shall never be in vain.”
Majeck Fashek may have left the entertainment space, his shoe is way far too big for any reggae artist to fill. He is a legend that would continue to live in his music, and his message of freedom and love. Nigerians, who long for the days when musical artists would chorus against social vices and creep to the conscience of political and religious leaders, have lost one of the best, they would hope that another chip of the old block would drop.
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