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King Sunny Ade: Nigerian Royalty and Juju Master

One of the fun things about getting into music is learning about genres that are completely foreign (both literally and figuratively) to me.

King Sunny Ade was born into Nigerian royalty. According to Craig Harris’ profile at AllMusic, Ade left school to pursue a career in music. He now is “the undisputed king of juju music” which, according to Harris, is a “hybrid of western pop and traditional African music with roots in the guitar tradition of Nigeria.”

King Sunny Ade plays dance music. His greatest success came in the early 1980s. The full name of his band is King Sunny Ade and His African Beats. It’s unclear if that is a specific band — and, if so, whether it still exists — or just the name given to any group he fronts.

Ade had to cancel a tour this summer due to visa problems. The fault, apparently, was in State Department computers and not specific to Ade.

The song above is “Me Le San” and below is “Maajo.”