Radiodiffusion Internasionaal Annexe


Ofo The Black Company

Allah Wakbarr (live in East Berlin)

Ofo The Black Company was formed in 1972 by Larry Ifediorama in Lagos, Nigeria.

That same year, he took his band to London, England to record their first for London Records. The single with “Allah Wakbarr” on the A side and “Beautiful Daddy” on the B side is highly collectable, usually fetching $100 or more per copy. Allah Wakbar has also been featured on the now defunct Afro Strut label’s Nigeria 70: The Definitive Story of 1970’s Funky Lagos compilation and recently on Luaka Bop’s World Psychedelic Classics 3: Love’s A Real Thing • The Funky Fuzzy Sounds of West Africa.

But in 1973, Ofo The Black Company was asked by the East German government to play the “World festivals of the youth and student Berlin capital of the GDR” International Folklore festival in East Berlin along with Miriam Makeba as well as other musicians from Argentina, Bulgaria, Chile and Vietnam.

As far as I know, they recorded two singles for London Records, the one mentioned above which was credited to “Ofo The Black Company” and another credited to “Ofo”. They released an album on the Afrodesia label – a subsidiary of Decca – in 1974, which has the song Eniaro that was featured on Soundway Record‘s Nigeria Rock Special: Psychedelic Afro-Rock & Fuzz Funk in 1970s Nigeria. There is also a live record by “Ofo The Rock Company” that was recorded somewhere in Europe.

Larry Ifediorama died in 2005 in Lagos, Nigeria.

Thanks to Volker Rohde for his help.

Catalog number 8 35 057 on Eterna VEB Deutsche Schallplatten, Berlin, East Germany released in 1973.

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3 Comments so far
Leave a comment

I played guitar with Lari (and Johnny) in Ofo for around 2 years in 1976. Anyone wishing to make contact is very welcome. Lari’s catchphrase ‘music makes me happy’ has been my mantra ever since, he was the most inspirational of men. RIP Lari.
Graham

Comment by Graham Gaffney

Hello Graham, Although I never met Lari, I worked with several of the band including Henry Popo (guitar), Kingsley (Percussion), Joe (guitar) and Sonny (Bass) and Udah (percussion) in the 70s in Haslemere Surrey and Reading. I lost contact with them around 1977 but would like to like to know where they are now. Can you help? Regards, James (Keyboards)

Comment by James Marr

Larry is my uncle. My mums elder brother. Its so unfortunate that he is no more to reap from the fruitage of his labor. He is one of the most talented humans I have ever come across in my life. Was with him shortly in Abuja before he died. He was such an inspirational fellow who never gave up so easily. A lover of good music. Larry hails from Okija in Anambra State, Nigeria. Larry’s younger brother Johnny and a former member of the band lives in Australia with his family.Larry loved people with all his heart and was ever ready to share.

Comment by IZUCHUKWU




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