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In Sierra Leone, Emmerson Commends Tejan Kabbah
By Awareness Times
Aug 17, 2011, 17:20
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Sierra Leones Superstar musician Emmerson Bockarie has opened up on a variety of issues in an interview with Abu Shaw of Awareness Times newspaper. The interview is published below. In it, Emmerson hails democratic credentials of former President, Dr. Ahmad Tejan Kabbah who ensured talented musicians could sing anti-Government lyrics. He laments the current regime seems not to be so tolerant to musical criticisms.

Emmerson speaks about his Wedding, Upcoming Album & Copyright Laws

Icons, in whatever discipline, are always in the public eye because of their star status. What they do or say publicly or in private is in most times, a general public interest. While some iconic stars often guide their everyday life jealously for the right reasons, there are others who hit the public domain for the wrong reasons.

In the case of Sierra Leones undisputed best selling artist, Emmerson Bockarie, all his musical fans do not care what goes on in his private life as long as he is providing them with the usual inspirational musical stuff which continues to highlight the ups and downs of the society in which they live. However,

It could be recalled that Emmerson bade farewell to bachelorhood on Saturday June 25, 2011 when he married to Augusta Bondu Gbenda, who works with the United Nations in war-torn Darfur, Sudan.

Amadu Massallay, Augusta & Emmerson at the wedding

Emmersons marriage, according to many speculations in the Sierra Leone media, was said to be punctuated with hiccups and problems on the night of the wedding. At the Sanctuary Praise Church, off Kingharman Road, Brookfields, in Freetown where the marriage ceremony took place, there were reports of commotion perpetrated by a former girl friend of the musical star.

The alleged ex girl friend of Emmerson was reported to have said how she felt cheated and betrayed by the musical maestro. Reports say she took some police officers to the wedding scene to vent her anger on Emmerson. The situation was eventually put under control after Emmerson balanced with his bride from the chaotic scene.

According to the relentless rumour mongers, true to his prophetic lyrics in Na for Balance, Emmerson supposedly became an implementer of his own advice in one of his greatest albums, by dodging the confrontation that nearly disrupted his nuptial night.

These immense speculations and misinformation in the Sierra Leone media regarding Emmersons wedding continued to go on forever. However, in a bid to set the record straight, the musical darling of Sierra Leone granted an exclusive interview with Abu Shaw of Awareness Times on July 25, 2011 at the Family Kingdom premises Aberdeen in Freetown where he refuted all the untruths concerning his marriage. 

Wedding Invitation for the Bockaries Big Day

Emmerson was absolutely delighted to tell it all as it is and so from the horses mouth, Awareness Times has decided to put the records straight. Below are excerpts of the live interview with Emmerson in Freetown.

ABU SHAW: Lets come to more personal issues. Its about your recent marriage. Lots of things have been said about you disappointing your ex-girl friend. There were reports about a commotion at the church where the marriage took place. Whats actually transpired during that day?

EMMERSON: Its all part of being a public figure you know. I am not supposed to say this because its my private life but the truth is that whether I dated 600 women and I disappointed them all, that is supposed to be between me and the women. But just to clarify some aspects, I will set some records right. First, the wonderful woman that I married is someone Ive been dating since the year 2005. We are not sharing a todays love but one grounded on deep confidence between us. I was so disappointed that all those in the media who published the rumours, never first asked me about this. The lady that was said to be present at the wedding is a mad woman. So its so stupid that people are actually

ABU SHAW: So you do not know her at all?

EMMERSON: No, I actually know her. I used to speak to a lady that passes up and down my street. She always says I am her boy friend like that, right? But everyone knows it was not true. She tells people lies from her fantasy world that she has spent lots of money about 40 million or 60 million Leones on me. You have lots of boys, lots of guys around her actually eating her money you know, telling her they would stick up Emmerson with her, stuff like that.

ABU SHAW: Are you truly disappointed about this whole issue?

EMMERSON: I feel actually disappointed that people should come to hear of that particular story and decide it is true, you know. I understand at some point because people say things about me stuff like that and I am used to this but I am truly disappointed that people are really thinking in that particular direction. That woman was just a mad woman.

ABU SHAW: There are reports that your bride is a white woman?

EMMERSON: (He bursts out with laughter) No she is from Kono.

ABU SHAW: Whats her name if you dont mind?

EMMERSON: Her name is Augusta Bondu Gbenda. But she is now Mrs. Augusta Bockarie.

ABU SHAW: I understand she works with the United Nations in Sudan?

EMMERSON: Yeah, yeah (he nodded his head in affirmation).

ABU SHAW: Lets come to the point of your next album, which I am sure have kept you quiet for so long. I am sure youve been working on something. Are you presently doing any new stuff?

EMMERSON: Absolutely. I have been working on a new album. My new album will be out soon. Definitely, there are lots of people, kind of, waiting for my album. Actually, I have spent a lot of time working on this album. But you know I have been working on other things... like getting married.

ABU SHAW: I understand, your next album will include footages from other countries.

EMMERSON: Yes, I am trying to reach people from places outside Sierra Leone to build relationship. I am tired of listening to the same Salone kind of sounds, beats now. Its high time we need to change the whole thing. So I just want to urge fans to wait when the album comes so theyll support me. We need a lot of money to do so.

ABU SHAW: You mentioned money, how much are you talking about to produce your next album?

EMMERSON:  Yes, it involves lots of money. In Nigeria for instance, shooting a footage or two will cost around $US1,000. I might like to shoot some scenes outside Sierra Leone but its very expensive.

ABU SHAW: Your fans may be anxious now

EMMERSON: Yes, I just want to urge my fans to wait and be patient. When the album comes, I promise them that they will not be disappointed. Theyll support me. And after this, we are going to talk about new things. Not Salone sounds or Salone beats.

ABU SHAW: Have you got any name or title for your new album?

EMMERSON: Ahmmthe name doesnt come like that. In my albums, I always come up with a name in the last days. It always works like that. I dont give my album names from the first day of work.

ABU SHAW: Now, lets come to this Copy Right/Anti-Piracy bill that was passed in to law. Whats your view on this?

EMMERSON: I feel excited about it. By signing of the Copy Right/Anti Piracy bill, I suppose, means I will sell more records. But thank God, I have been selling my albums since my Bobor Bele days with little piracy of them. I thank God for that. But I even thank President Ernest Koroma for fast tracking the bill. That means, I am going to make more money. And I even want to say thanks to former President Tejan Kabbah for giving us the opportunity to speak freely.

ABU SHAW: Why did you give special praise to President Kabbah?

EMMERSON: The reason why I said that is because since the release of this album Yesterday betteh pass Tiday? it seems as if a lot of people are, kind of, not allowing us to speak freely. What I think personally now I cannot sing. Pa Kabbah was a good leader because it seems as if he was not hiding anything, right? It seems as if people are hiding certain things in this regime. Because, if youre not hiding anything, you cant stop people from speaking freely; you should not be afraid of speaking freely. I actually think Pa Kabbah was a good leader.
Abu Shaw (right) & Emmerson at the Family Kingdom during the recent Interview

© Copyright by Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.

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