Music, Arts & Community | A Choggu Boys Legacy

Contributors: Zulfawu  | Yussif Hamdia | | Abdul Jalil Mahamud

Supervised by: Rahamatu-Lahi Zakaria

Over a decade in the music industry, the music duo, Choggu Boys have over the years build
a strong legacy for themselves. Writing the history of the development of northern music cannot
be complete without a chapter of this talented music group.

Choggu Boys are Rappers from the Northern region of Ghana. ”Choggu” is the name of a community in Tamale North constituency, the duo are two young men who grew up in choggu community. The community is one of the oldest communities in Tamale.

The duo’s lyrical prows undoubtedly contains lots of Dagbanli literal devices, which has laid the foundations of whom they have become today and on this foundation they have built a remarkable story for themselves and influenced a lot of musicians in the region with their unique style.

Every musical action and decision taken by Choggu boys is a deliberate attempt to promote Dagbon culture, preserving and adding a repertoire of narratives to Dagbon creative archives. Choggu Boys made of Tashiru Tahiru is known in showbiz as Black Echo and Abdulai Alhassan as Leo Khan rose to fame in 2011 with their first official album, Dagbani Pop.

Their emergence revolutionized the music scene from stagecraft, music production and lyrics. The duo stand out among the hundreds of musicians in the region due to their ability to blend the Dagbon culture and Western tunes perfectly without diluting the message they want to share and how they turn to share it lyrically.

Choggu Boys unique style has made both the old and young generations cherish their style and what they have to offer. The duo’s understanding of their locality has propelled them to learn Dagbon word plays as much as possible to entertain whiles maintaining the values of the dagomba people

The kind of music videos they produce does not keep elders away from their music nor does it compromise their creativity and originality. Choggu Boys recognise the need to maintain acceptable norms even in music, so they choose to incorporate their cultural norms into their music production.

Despite the trends in the world and rapid change in lifestyle, Dagbon culture still heavily frowns upon the sexual exposure the human body mist especially women, the duo tries as much as possible to respect and
uphold those values in their music videos without sexualizing’s females featured in their in music videos.\

When it comes to their music videos or stagecraft, Choggu Boys have always tried to showcase
their community through their fashion. Sometimes they carry artefacts which anyone can easily connect to the people of Dagbon. In doing so, they try to find a balance between the old and the young folks where they all can enjoy and appreciate the creativity involved and their authenticity.

“I can vividly remember when Choggu boys started hip-hop music seriously. Many lamented
they won’t go far because they say lots of proverbs to insult people. But today almost 90% of
northern musicians have adopted the style of using proverbs in their music, yet they are not
regarded the ambassadors of the action here in the north.’’

An upcoming artist.

One element of society that the people of Dagbon hold in high esteem is family and it is very
refreshing to see the Mba Baga hit makers portray themselves as ambassadors of Dagbon culture
by singing about the importance of family unity in one of their songs titled, Dang.

In this tune, they have been able to campaign for the need for unity among family and friends, which
symbolizes the community in our society. The music goes further to talk about the relationship
between the Dagbanba and Moshie. The Dagombas and Moshie are playmates.

One way that the Dagbanba have always used to preserve their history is through oral
appellations and the pouring of libation. In their Heroes for Change song, they incorporate this technique through the sound of drumming while telling their audience the stories of great people
who have impacted lives in the Choggu area.

Black Echo and Leo Khan have set a track record for Northern musicians to follow, through
their Heroes for Change Album and project, they advocate for society to acknowledge and
celebrate individuals who are making great impact in society.

“To me, Choggu Boys is a great pillar that still holds the value of Dagban in the heart of many
especially in the south and other regions of Ghana. They will appear in a way that even the blind
can tell this people are from the north. Specifically Dagbombas due to their choice of words.’’

A music fan in the Choggu community

The Heroes for Change project has enabled them to eulogies the late Dr David Abdulai popularly
known as Dr Choggu by building a statue for renowned philanthropist and unofficially renaming the Choggu roundabout to Dr Choggu roundabout. The erection of the Doctor Choggu statue has not only beautified and developed Choggu in a way but also serves as a motivation for upcoming and well-established artists to add community development to their works.

According to the inhabitants of Choggu, their community has travelled the length and breadth of
the world via Choggu boys. They believe that the music duo has used every opportunity they get
to sell their community through music videos, interviews, and most especially during live performances in music concerts.

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