International renown Ugandan musician, Geoffrey Oryema is set to perform at the 2016 Bayimba Honours, which will be held at Lohana Academy in Kampala on December 17, 2016.
Bayimba Foundation this year initiated the Bayimba Honours to recognize artists, private individuals, families, institutions or companies for their contribution, in the spirit of philanthropy, to the development of the arts and cultural life in Uganda. By recognizing such contributors, Bayimba seeks to encourage appreciation of and to increase the level of philanthropy and widen the support to the arts and cultural life in Uganda.
Speaking to Northern Buzz in a recent interview, Faisal Kiwewa, the founding director of Bayimba Cultural Foundation confirmed that Geoffrey Oryema will perform at the December 17th event.
“Yes Geoffrey Oryema will be entertaining guests at the Bayimba Honours. It will be his first time to return to Uganda since 1977. He will arrive in the country on December 15th,” Faisal Kiwewa said.
“Oryema has specialized in world music. He has wonderful music, which I am sure the guests will enjoy listening to,” he added.
Nominations for the Bayimba Honours are already closed and a Bayimba Honours Committee will be responsible for selecting the winners in 3 categories. The winners will be announced at the awards/honours ceremony.
Who is Geoffrey Oryema?
Geoffrey Oryema (born 16 April 1953) is an internationally renowned Ugandan musician. In 1977, at the age of 24 and at the height of Idi Amin’s power, Oryema was smuggled across the Ugandan border in the trunk of a car, after the death of his father, Erinayo Wilson Oryema, who was a cabinet minister, beginning a life in exile.
Today his songs keep alive the languages of his youth – Swahili and Acholi and are enjoyed by many Uganda.
Oryema earned his international reputation following the release of his second album, “Beat the Border”. He has collaborated with, amongst others, Peter Gabriel and was backed by French musicians including Jean-Pierre Alarcen (guitar) and Patrick Buchmann (drums, percussion, backing vocals), touring with WOMAD in Australia, the USA, Japan, Brasil and Europe.
In 1994 the band performed at Woodstock 94 celebrating the 25th anniversary of the legendary festival. Gabriel’s record label, Real World, helped with the first three of Oryema’s albums, until his move to Sony International, a label established in France where Oryema resides since his exile.
Besides his two native languages mentioned earlier, he also sings in English and French.