Ghana's Highlife Music Collection

Biographies and Interviews

African BrothersAfrican Brothers
From 1967 Nana Kwame Ampadu was leading the African Brothers Band in Kumasi under the sponsorship of the Ambassador Gardens Hotel.
Black BeatsBlack Beats
In 1952, King Bruce and tenor saxophonist Saka Acquaye formed the Black Beats band.
Moses Kwaku Oppong, popularly known as Kakaiku, was born on October 2, 1916, in Aboso in the Western Region of Ghana.
C.K. MannC.K. Mann
C.K. Mann was born in 1936 in Cape Coast. A former seaman and a member of Kakaiku’s Guitar Band for some time, he joined the Ocean Strings’ which he led until 1965.
Broadway BandBroadway Band
The Broadway Band was established in 1958 in Takoradi by Sam Obote, a Nigerian. The name Broadway was changed to Uhuru in 1964.
E.T. MensahE.T. Mensah
Emmanuel Tetteh Mensah was born on 31st May 1919 in Accra. When the Tempos split up in 1950, he recruited musicians to form the band E.T. Mensah and the Tempos.
Kwaa MensahKwaa Mensah
Kwaa Mensah was born in Lagos (Nigeria) in September, 1920. His uncle was the first highlife guitarist in Ghana, Jacob Sam,.
Peter Legrand MensahPeter Legrand Mensah
Peter Legrand Mensah alias Elgrand Koffie was born on February 3rd 1940 at Saltpond in the Mfantsiman District of the Central Region of Ghana.
E.K. NyameE.K. Nyame
Emmanuel Kofi Nyame was born in 1927. In 1949 he left Appiah Agyekum’s Band to form the E.K.’s Band.
Oscarmore OforiOscarmore Ofori
Oscarmore Ofori is a traditional musician coming from a family of musicians. He began his apprenticeship in traditional music a tender age of 12 years.
Kwabena (King) OnyinaKwabena (King) Onyina
Kwabena Onyina was born on March 15, 1932, at Agona Ashanti. Onyina earned the title “King” in 1961, when he won a National Guitar Band competition.
Ramblers Dance BandRamblers Dance Band
In 1961, the alto saxophonist Jerry Hansen and nine musicians left the Black Beats to form the fully professional Ramblers Dance Band.
Red SpotsRed Spots
The Tempo Band was dissolved in 1953 and the musicians under Tommy Gripman’s leadership formed the Red Spots.
Rhythm AcesRhythm Aces
A highlife dance-band formed in 1954 under the leadership of Spike Anyankor.
Jacob SamJacob Sam
Kwame Asare (Jacob Sam) was born in 1903 in Cape Coast. Asare was trained as a goldsmith and he moved to Kumasi where he formed the Kumasi Trio.
The original leader of the Stargazers of Kumasi was Glen Cofie, later replaced by Eddie Quansah, with Joe Mensah as lead vocal.
Sweet TalksSweet Talks
The Sweet Talks was formed in 1973 by Jonathan Abraham, proprietor of The Talk of the Town Hotel in Tema.
Founded by Ga drummer Nii Ashitey and the dramatist Saka Acquaye in 1973, Wulomei is a folk revival band from Accra.