It’s fair to say that when I left home for Nigeria I wasn’t expecting to encounter Jimi Hendrix, but last night I did. Well I saw the Nigerian version of him live on stage and bloomin nora maybe it was the couple of (ok few) beers I’d had but this guy was the spit of him and he could really play as well!
We started our night at the British Village where we inadvertently gatecrashed the kids disco ooops, stayed for a couple drinks and our tea then headed home for a couple of drinks there before getting a taxi to a live music place on the other side of Abuja. My flatmates had been before a couple of times and for one reason or another I had yet to venture with them. I had been warned that there was a female singer who has a tendency to lead you out in front of everyone to dance, but if you avoid eye contact with her when she approaches you are usually ok, so I’m told. Not so for one of my flatmates who seems to get picked on every week. All credit to her to she got up there and danced away with the singer, I’m practising my ‘don’t even think about it’ face if she tries it with me.
It was a great night, the band were awesome and most of the singers were amazing. There was one point where the music totally reminded of being on holiday in Chamonix a few years ago and it made me all nostalgic for that and then the set list a bit later was just like being at a club we always go to back in the Toon called World Headquarters and I got all nostalgic for that too. I also kept thinking of people at home who would be loving it, my mate Tom who would love the Jimi Hendrix guy, my step dad who would love the fact he was playing the Eagles etc. Then it dawned on me here I was thinking about home again when actually I was having a really good time here in Abuja in my new life, making new memories. No doubt in the future I’ll be sat somewhere else and it will remind me of here and now and I’ll think of this with a smile on my face (and hopefully not with my head in my hands thinking ‘dear god how embarrassing when I got dragged up in front everyone to dance’).
It was great watching how the crowd reacted to everything as well and observing the cultural differences. Here in Nigeria it’s common to show your appreciation by getting up and literally placing money on the band members you are enjoying. You could be merrily banging (technical term) away on the drums and some guy will just walk up and put a 500 naira note on your face or throw it in your general direction. Another thing I noticed that would never happen back home is that guys would just randomly get up and dance with each other, I mean like guys that don’t know each other. It’s like, ‘hey I’m having a great time, I want to dance, oh look you are too let’s dance together’ and that’s just fine and dandy. Imagine that happening back at home, I think not! It was brilliant to watch everyone was just so HAPPY!!!!
You might be thinking that I should have photos but apparently you aren’t allowed which is a shame, I might try and sneak one or two on my phone next time we go but they will be pretty dark and you won’t be able to see the Jimi in all his glory but trust me it’s him, or his Nigerian cousin at least.