By
   Nze James Chinonyerem

He remains one of our greatest products and exports. A philosopher musician, composer, singer, historian and anthropologist, Ndaa Danny Orji embodied and manifested our cherished heritage. In his songs, he expressed our world views, in his music he demonstrated our capacity in original creativities and arts. His music encapsulated our thoughts, aspirations, norms, mores and search for meanings in life.

Ndaa Danny was a pan Igbo man with undiluted pride and patriotism in Owere culture and traditions. He worked hard through the explorations of our folklore and lived experiences to compose and sing songs which captured our cultural identity as a people and gave the outside world a broad perspective of our who we are and what we are. He did not sing for singing sake, but devoted time, energy and mental resources to situate the Owere man on world historical map through the instrumentality of his music and song. His was a brand of music and song that were original and engaging. His voice was midas touch in it’s impact and his lyrical lines were superbly enriching in sense and sound.

His various songs are reflective of the phases of our history, especially immediately after the civil war and running to the end of his earthly life. Indeed, he sang to give us valuable identity, enrich our didactics as well as provide entertainment for tortured minds to uplift the spirits, renew the faith, build confidence, instil pride and signpost the collective heritage of the Owere man in particular and Igbo people in general. Indeed, the most distinguishable feature of his music and song is his unending love for humanity and the historical reflections and cultural contextual placements of his compositions and performances. He always consciously chose words, allegories, events and messages which really happened in the human world to remind, teach, educate and inform his people and entertain the community.

He composed songs that honoured our community, celebrated our great men and women as well as reflect slices of our lives.

Ndaa Danny was a griot per excellence. His passion for the traditional music was unquestionable, his creative mind was sharp and his voice was differently alluring and disarming. Certainly, he was in a world class of his own in traditional music with adorable set inductions.

Ndaa Danny Orji achieved greatness not just by wish but more by hard-work, endurance, focus and right associations.

As we remember him at the eight year of his earthly departure to be with his creator, I call for the proper immortalization of the name and legacies of this great son of Imo state. Indeed, it will be to the greater benefits of humanity if our tertiary institutions encourage, through establishments of courses to study the musical philosophies of this great man of all times.

Adieu Ndaa Danny Orji, may you continue to rest in the paradise of our heavily father.

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