The argle-bargle about who actually started Entertainment talk show on radio (in the City) has been a subject with many twists – as many seem to claim they started it. Since facts are sacred and good for future reference, Presspeep.com brings you a full report filed by one of Ghana’s excellent Art Writers, Kwame Dadzie, on the issue. Take a read below:
Stanley Nyame, one of Ghana’s celebrated radio presenters known in public life as DJ Abio who is believed to have started entertainment discussion programme on radio has broken silence on recent debate as to who the true initiator is.
In an exclusive interview with Flex newspaper’s Kwame Dadzie from his New York base, DJ Abio recounted that he was the first to have done an entertainment discussion or review programme on radio in Ghana, on 23rd October, 2003. That notwithstanding, a precursor to this happened at Radio Univers in 1997 when he co – hosted his first ever entertainment discussion programme.
“That show was in August, 1997 when we did a tribute to Afrobeat legend Fela Kuti of Nigeria. The week he died, I co – hosted the show with Professor Yankah with discussants Charles Amoah, Professor John Collins, another lady professor from Nigeria,” He went on to narrate how that spawned another review programme on Radio Univers.
“Earlier in those days, I also used to listen to Carl Agyemang Bannerman of GBC Radio 2 who did an entertainment magazine programme that was more of leisure and celebrity interviews. So later at Radio Univers, I was inspired to start Critic’s Corner to critique art people. Then on 1st December, 1999 I joined Channel R,” he said.
He added that what really made him start mainstream entertainment review programme was that one day he was listening to his former colleague at Radio Univers Kwame Baah – Nuakoh do a sports newspaper review on Adom FM and he decided to do same for entertainment on Channel R 92.7 MHz (now 3FM).
“So after hearing Kwame do that on Adom FM, I hatched similar idea for the arts and I discussed with my godfather Professor Kojo Yankah who gave me some tips on how to go about it so I started 205 Total Entertainment on 23rd October, 2003. It was my own creation. In fact, I created almost all programmes on Channel R, then,” he added.
DJ Abio said when he started 205 Total Entertainment, Agyemang Prempeh (now at Rainbow Radio) was not around. He was nowhere near even the panel’s seat so Abio was surprised Agyemang had said on Doctor Cann’s Showbiz Xtra that he gave him the idea.
“That is a lie. My panel members were Nat Sankofa Tete Arthur, Gabby Arko (now at Onua FM), Kwasi Aboagye (Peace FM), Loviette Abiola Ampem, DJ Oxygen (of Oxxy FM) and music producer Faisal Helwani. I brought in Agyemang later when some of the panel members had left,” he told Flex newspaper.
According to DJ Abio, he was the one that even motivated Kwasi Aboagye to start his Entertainment Review show on Peace FM. He said he had always wanted a lot of people to follow what he was doing so he set out to conscientise other presenters including Kwasi Aboagye to follow suit.
“I once told Kwasi to ask his boss Fada Dickson to give him airtime to start something like that but he said he tried and it did not work. Sometime in 2006, he tried again and they gave him the red light. I even gave him my producer Eugene Osarfo Nkansah,” he further noted.
Speaking more about the import of 205 Total Entertainment on Channel R, he said it was basically to serve as a platform of taking divergent opinions on showbiz related issues and solving the industry’s issues.
“Most of the entertainment shows that had existed then were more of promotional interviews, tit bits and music charts. I was the first to have started reviewing newspaper stories about the arts and entertainment,” Abio reiterated.
One question that his predecessors had been unable to answer was the meaning of ‘205.’ According to DJ Abio, he built his show on numerology. He said the ‘2’ represented that fact that there would be two or more of the kind of show he had started.
The ‘0’ in its oval shape meant the ‘world’ – that the show would try cover the world’s entertainment; something he started by introducing the international version of the show on Mondays. He said in numerology, ‘5’ means star, meaning the show would shine for a lot of people to see, hence, 205.
“So there are spiritual meanings to it. There was no way that show would flop. It was built on a solid foundation,” he disclosed. Commenting on the current state of entertainment shows in Ghana, he said he was impressed with the fact that a lot of people have embraced what he started and are even doing better.
DJ Abio started radio at Radio Univers in 1994 and left in 1999 for Channel R where he served as the General Manager for about 10 years before he finally quit in 2010 and traveled to the United States of America. According to the bearded DJ, his aim is to get back to radio to do Afrocentric content.
Credit: Kwame Dadzie (Flex Newspaper)