Ghana Music Week Festival celebrated the first leg of its’ world tour in the United States of America this past weekend. As a result of a collaboration between Musicians Union of Ghana (MUSIGA) and Ghana’s Ministry of Tourism, the Ghana Music Week Festival is being utilized as a tool to promote tourism in Ghana. Leaders from MUSIGA, including the President (Bice Osei-Kuffor, a.k.a Obour), the General Secretary (gospel singer Deborah Freeman), and Communications Director (Daddy Bosco), together with Ghana’s top musicians, including Edem, D Black, Pappy Kojo, Joey B, Gasmilla, Becca, Samini, and A.B. Crentsil, joined forces and used their music prowess to promote Ghana to the U.S. audience.
Upon their arrival, the Ghanaian delegation was joined by other musicians (such as Koby Maxwell) and guests (including the Deputy Chief of Mission, Mr.Achulo) who were treated to a special dinner in Maryland. While at the dinner, the musicians had the chance to participate in a few interviews and participate in a few promos, promoting the Ghana Music Week festival. All guests were treated to a special impromptu performance by A.B. Crentsil and Obour, live on the dance floor.
On Friday October 16, 2015, the Ghanaian delegation was hosted by the Ghana Embassy in Washington , D.C. His Excellency Lieutenant General Joseph Smith and his lovely wife welcomed guests to the embassy, as they enjoyed the live band. A.B. Crentsil gave an extraordinary live performance of his classic hits, while the audience hung on to every lyric whispered by him, treasuring his raw and undying talent. Musicians Kobby and Rocky Dawuni were also in attendance. Afterwards, the President of Ghana, Bice Osei Kuffour, took to the podium and explained to the audience the ways in which musicians were teaming up with the Ministry of Tourism to promote Ghana.
“We want people to be aware of the great music that Ghana has. From the 1st to the 7th of March, wherever you are in this world, all the world will be focused on Ghana, because all the stars will be traveling to Ghana to be part of the Ghana Music Week Festival. After the U.S launch, we will be launching in China, Australia, UK, and South Africa, but we chose to start our launch in the United States because of the great relationship between Ghana and the U.S. We want to build on this intercultural relationship that exists between cities in the U.S. and the country of Ghana so that these relationships can also add up to the tourism gains of our country. We want all people, Ghanaians and non-Ghanaians, to come to Ghana and explore the richness of Ghanaian culture”, stated Bice Osei-Kuffour.
During Ghana Music Week, which will occur during the first week in March 2016, there will be a variety of events planned to promote tourism. During his speech at the Ghana Embassy in Washington D.C., Bice Osei-Kuffour gave five key reasons why people should return to Ghana in March 2016. He informed the guests that they should go to Ghana from March 1 to March 7th in order to attend Ghana Music Week. In order to persuade people to visit Ghana, South African Airways will be offering a reasonably priced roundtrip ticket , which will allow people to visit Ghana for $900 roundtrip. Also, for those people who visit Ghana during the first week in March, MUSIGA will keep track of the first 100 people who register for the program, and provide tickets to them for all of the musical events which will be occurring during the week. Such events will include an opening ceremony event with President Mahama at Cape Coast castle, Ghana Music Honors, a 2 day music conference, and international music and cultural day which will include musicians from India, USA, China, and UK. Also, during the Ghana Music Week, there will be a Ghana Independence Jam with 59 musicians performing, and on March 7th there will also be a “Music Meets Tourism” concert where Ghanaian musicians will stage concerts at various tourism sites within Ghana. Lastly, there will be a special dinner dance for the Diasporan community, called “ Diasporans Night”.
While at the Embassy, five people were honored as a result of their efforts to contribute towards Ghanaian art, culture, and tourism. George Bright-Abu was honored for the work he does with his Afrikan Post paper, and Dr. Brown, Mr. and Mrs. Agyekum, and Dr. Cobina Lartson were also honored.