8 quick facts about the late legendary music promoter Femi Esho

Femi Esho

Evergreen Chairman/CEO, Femi Esho

By Oluwapelumi Oluwayemi

 The music world mourns the loss of Chief Femi Esho, a legendary music promoter and the Chairman of Evergreen Musical Company, who passed away on June 17, 2024, at the age of 77 after a brief illness.

Here are eight quick facts about the life and times of this iconic figure:

Birth and Early Life:

Chief Femi Esho was born on October 29, 1946, in Ilesa, Osun State, Nigeria. His passion for music began early, as he started collecting music at the tender age of 12.

Founder of Evergreen Musical Company:

Esho established the Evergreen Musical Company which played a pivotal role in reviving and preserving the works of legendary African musicians.

Radio and Television Presenter:

Esho was a prominent radio and television presenter.

He hosted the weekly show “Highlife Renaissance” on Raypower, Nigeria’s first private radio station, for about three years, where he fervently promoted evergreen music, particularly Highlife.

Centenary Music Review:

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In 2014, to mark Nigeria’s centenary celebration, Esho reviewed a century of Nigerian music, from 1914 to 2014, on a special program broadcast on the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), reflectingting the evolution and rich history of the nation’s music.

Evergreen Music Heritage Foundation:

Esho founded the Evergreen Music Heritage Foundation in Surulere, Lagos.

The foundation is dedicated to preserving Nigeria’s musical heritage and serves as a comprehensive resource for research and documentation of over 10,000 Nigerian musicians.

Band Performances:

He formed a band dedicated to evergreen music, which performed at prestigious venues in Lagos, including the Metropolitan Club, Ikoyi Club, MUSON Centre, Island Club, and Yoruba Tennis Club, attracting patronage from numerous corporate giants.

International Recognition:

Esho’s efforts to preserve African music gained international acclaim. A poignant moment in 2008 saw Ghanaian Highlife star Jerry Hansen moved to tears when Esho presented him with his lost works, exemplifying Esho’s dedication to music preservation.

Death and Legacy:

Chief Femi Esho passed away on June 17, 2024, at the age of 77. Known affectionately as “Baba Esho,” he was a mentor and an ‘encyclopedia’ to many Highlife music enthusiasts. His legacy is marked by his tireless efforts to ensure the immortality of Nigerian Highlife, Juju, Sakara, Apala, Afrobeat, and other indigenous music genres.

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