Who is William Onyeabor?


Written by James Ratcliffe
10 Monday 10th March 2014

Colston Hall is extremely excited to announce that members of Hot Chip, LCD Soundsystem and Bloc Party will be collaborating with Money Mark, Sinkane and other special guests to celebrate the music and the mystery of cult Nigerian funk synth pioneer William Onyeabor at a very special show on Wednesday 2 April.

One of only two performances in the world, this night in homage to a musical visionary is the first time that Onyeabor’s music will be performed live. The stellar cast of artists performing includes Alexis Taylor of Hot Chip, Pat Mahoney of LCD Soundsystem and Kele Okereke of Bloc Party.

Born out of the 70s funk scene, Onyeabor released eight nearly impossible to find albums in Nigeria in the 70s and 80s before becoming a born again Christian and abandoning music. After a five year search for the man, David Byrne’s record label Luaka Bop released the much-praised compilation album Who Is William Onyeabor? last year.

Todd Wills, head of programming at Colston Hall explains:

“William Onyeabor made some amazing electronic music; he was way ahead of his time, but fell completely off the radar for years. It’s only now that people are rediscovering his work and it’s rightly being championed by the likes of Damon Albarn, Hot Chip and 6Music.

“It’s extremely exciting to be able to bring this show to Bristol, as it’s one of only two happening in the world, and it’s a real celebration of a great musical discovery. In an age where you can find out anything about an artist in a quick Google search, it’s refreshing to come across someone that nobody knows very much about.”

Tickets are on sale, to book call the box office on 0844 887 1500 or visit www.colstonhall.org/atomic-bomb

Sunday 2nd April
7.30pm / £26.88 inc booking fee 
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