Biography of Ayub Ogada

Ayub Ogada is a musician from Kenya. Ogada is one of the Luo people of Western Kenya, and he received his first exposure to Western culture early on. When he was six, his parents (also musicians), toured the college circuit in the U.S. Ogada then returned to Kenya with his parents, and was educated in a Catholic school, then an English boarding school. After finishing school, he played for several years in a Kenyan group called African Heritage Band, which fused traditional music with the sounds of rock and soul that Ogada and bandmates heard regularly on the radio. In 1986, he decided to take his talents abroad. Armed with his nyatiti (a lyre-like stringed instrument), he went to the U.K. , and played on the streets for money. After the better part of a year, he was approached and asked to play at Peter Gabriel's WOMAD festival. In 1993, he was invited to Gabriel's Realworld Studios, where he recorded his first album, En Mane Kuoyo (Just Sand). He continues to tour extensively with WOMAD. (taken from his Myspace page) The singer, he also performs on the traditional east African stringed instrument, the nyatiti and is a highly accomplished djembe player. Of the Luo people, he was born in Mombasa. Ogada co-founded the African Heritage Band in 1979 and played kit drums, bass and percussion for many years before departing for London, England, where he initially occasionally busked London streets, singing accompianied by Nyatiti and leg rattle or ankle bells. Ogada arrived in the United Kingdom in 1986, and in 1993 recorded the album En Mana Kuoyo on Peter Gabriel's Real World label. His music has also been heard on the soundtrack of the 2000 release of I 'Dreamed of Africa' and the 2005 film The Constant Gardener. His music was used in the soundtrack for Ewan McGregor and Charlie Boorman's BBC series Long Way Round and Long Way Down. Ogada has collaborated with Susheela Raman on several tracks on her "Salt Rain" album, such as "O Rama", and with Tony Levin on his album World Diary. In addition, he has collaborated with the Afro Celt Sound System on their first and fourth releases. In July 2005 Ogada performed at the Live 8 concert, Eden Project as the opening act with his still current line-up, UNO (2007) himself performing on a large replica of an historic Egyptian lyre. Based in London, Ogada has embraced electronic recording techniques, though remaining exclusively acoustical in live performances. Ayub also spends much of his time in his native Kenya. Ayub has also supplemented his music career with some acting in the past under the name Job Seda. He played Robert Redford's Masaii sidekick in Out of Africa and also starred in Kitchen Toto. His piece, "Kothbiro" appears in the soundtrack of the Méxican Film "The Blue Room" based on the novel of George Simenon. On March 8th 2007 he released an Album with Union Nowhere titled Tanguru. There is very limited information about this album. It is only available for download through iTunes. Recently he has moved back to Kenya in June 2007.

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