MAJEK FASHEK: THE DROWNING RAIN MAKER.
I must have been in primary four when Majek Fashek’s hit single ‘send down the rain’ became a phenomenal success, this was as far back as 1987 or there about. The ‘send down the rain’ song meant a lot of things to different people; to the lay man it was a simple prayer to God on behalf of farmers to send down the rain. To others, it had a deeper meaning; such a song couldn't have come at a better time as the Nigeria of those years was still neck deep into a directionless and retrogressive military administration. People were suffering but they didn't dare challenge the government of the day, ‘send down the rain’ was a subtle song of hope calling on the almighty creator to come down and bring succour to his toiling and suffering children (Nigerians).
Ironically, there were actually instances at various concerts where Majek performed this particular song and the clouds did open and brought forth rain. Thus, Majek Fashek eventually bagged the ‘rain maker’ title, a title that stuck with him. Majek Fashek was not a one-hit wonder; he gave Nigerians many more hit songs that remain evergreen till this day.
Today’s Nigeria is freer, we can now insult our leaders to high heavens either in public, private or in the social media and nothing will happen (I think). Nigeria’s music industry has become buoyant and has driven many unknown talented and less-talented people out of poverty. It can be said that to a descent extent, the sun is shining in certain areas of our national life, but for Majek Fashek, it’s still raining, heavily.
Once touted as a bona fide music-descendant of Bob Marley, Majek Fashek is now a shadow himself-a broken drug addict that seems to be heading towards the highway to hell or ‘hopefully’ heaven. Majek Fashek needs help, he is schizophrenic (o ti ya were) and no one is sure if he’s being well taken care of. The government is silent, PMAN is silent and the 'association of Nigerian reggae artistes' (if such a group actually exists) is also quiet.
The moment this Nigerian music treasure drops dead, everyone comes out and starts dishing out useless eulogies. A group of Nigerian artistes will probably come together and sing a glowing tribute to him. Several other talentless artistes will also emerge and sing about the rain maker. The Lagos state government would probably name a street in Gowon estate after him-o’tan.
At the end of it all, life will surely go on; those Nigerian entertainers that are currently in their prime will continue to ‘enjoy’ life. A few will make wise financial investments for their future; others will squander today’s opportunities and become objects of national pity in future when ‘strange’ ailments start to afflict them.
I have never met Majek Fashek in person and I probably never will but his music has always been a part of me. I cannot help him 'financially' through this present predicament (Nigga's broke); however, I’ve decided to help him the only way I can-through my written words.
Here I am seriously wishing that those with the resources would get off their high horses and give this rain maker a bit of sunshine.