Baba Yara Stadium is now ready for CAN 2008.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Hello, meet Efiewura of Kumasi radio

Many Ghanaians may be wanting to know who is that humorous voice behind those radio and television commercials, advertising almost all the Ghanaian movies these days.
The commercial are always in Fante and almost always narrates parts of the plot of the movies, paints vivid scenarios and end by urging listeners to go and find the “Veee Ceee Deee” (VCD).
Well for those of you who don’t know, the man behind it is Kwame Dzokoto, a.k.a. “Efiewura”, a popular radio presenter in Kumasi and a film actor as well. Coincidentally, he is an actor in the television soap, “Efiewura”, but that has nothing to do with his nick name. In the Efiewura soap, he is known as Lawyer Kabou from the “Apoto ayowa” Chambers and married to Benyiwa, the fat woman with the famous “buttocks”.
In Kumasi where he is a radio presenter at Hello FM, he is popularly noted by one of his signature jingles, made with that same tiny engineered voice which stretches his name as “Efiewura eeeiiiii”.
Hello FM is undoubtedly one of the most listened to radio stations in the Garden City and the entire Ashanti region and it is no wonder that one of the people behind the success of the station is Kwame Dzokoto, who is Programmes Manager of the station and the host of Kwanso bre bre programme aired from 3pm to 6pm each working day.
Kwanso bre bre is a magazine programme which entails motivational messages and music. With Kumasi being a business hub of the country where many traders in the country converge, Dzokoto’s programme is aimed at giving motivational messages especially to traders who were unable to make good sales in the day, encouraging them not to give up but look up for another day.
The first part of the programme is where he does most of the talking which cuts across targeting both the youth and the elderly and he play gospel music as well. The second half entails playing secular music with tit bits on sports from his sports crew, as well as “Kanawu” special, where he discusses social issues with Kwaku Adusei, a social commentator.
The programme is interspersed with jokes and Dzokoto is indeed very humorous on air, getting listeners glued to the station. It is with that same humour that he has extended to doing the radio and television commercials advertising the Ghanaian movies.
Hitherto, many radio and television commercials advertising Ghanaian movies were seen as not making the films catchy enough. But Dzokoto’s entrance has indeed helped moved radio marketing for the movies to a new pedestal. He has his voice on about 90 percent of the commercials and his sound engineer is Nana Otou Gyandour of Skyy Power Radio in Takoradi.
What is your secret behind the monopoly for all the commercials? The Graphic Showbiz asked Dzokoto in an interview in Kumasi.
“Well, I did one commercial for Miracle Films sometime back, and he followed it with another and another. Before I could say jack almost every film maker was rushing to me to do the jingle for them. Many of the Ghanaian movies are produced in Kumasi so it is not easy for them to find me. But some people from Accra also come to me.”
As to how he is able to do the job very well for other producers to rush to him, Dzokoto said his secret was his advantage as an actor since he is able to put himself in the film and narrate it.
He said some even just call him and narrate the story line on telephone and before they could say jack, he is ready with the work.
He explained that it is common for people to tune off a radio station the moment commercials start playing so he tries to introduce his commercials with humour in order to get attention.
“I was introduced to radio commercials by Mr Wilson Arthur, owner of Skyy Power Radio in Takoradi, who after listening to me on Dynamite FM in Tarkwa, drove to the station and asked to speak to me. He ended up poaching me to work with him at Skyy Power in Takoradi”.
Dzokoto explained, he ended up in radio as an “accident”. “
“Well you see, I attended a programme at Takoradi and the MC was late so my colleagues some of whom worked with Dynamite FM asked me to stand in for the MC to which I executed the job perfectly”.
He explained his friends advised that he could do better in radio so he was allowed to read announcements on air in Fanti. Significantly, Dynamite FM which was an English speaking radio station on the campus of the Tarkwa School of Mines was then turning to the local language so as to be able to get outside the university community to the local one.
“So that explains how I got into radio in 1998” Dzokoto said.
Whiles at Dynamite, Mr Wilson Arthur, owner of Skyy Power Radio who was then driving through Tarkwa on a mission of trying to extend his airwaves from Takoradi to the area, heard Dzokoto on air and fell in love with his style.
“Mr Arthur approached me at Dynamite and asked that I moved with him to Takoradi to work at Skyy. I was initially hesitant, since I found it difficult moving away from my mother’s side at Tarkwa to Takoradi. But he came back and moved me to Takoradi at a time I had worked with Dynamite for about three years”.
He introduced me to radio advertisement and guided me with both positive and negative criticisms. “I owe a lot to him because he schooled me very well to become what I am today in the industry”.
Dzokoto shot to fame in Takoradi where he worked with Skyy Power for about four years. He handled the mid-morning programme but what really shot him to fame was the Saturday morning programme, “Ade akye abia”, which attracted many listeners in Takoradi because of his jokes and humour.
Unfortunately for Takoradi listeners, and fortunately for Kumasi people, Mr Kwame Despite poached Dzokoto to Kumasi at the onset of Hello FM at a time, Dzokoto had just married his wife, Christina.
But he had to move to Kumasi by all means, because, the offer on the table at Hello was “big”. His switch to Kumasi then was the second time in his entire life that he was visiting the Garden City.
Dzokoto, whose wife just gave birth to a boy is in his mid 30s and was born at Abease in Sekondi to Mr Moses Dzokoto, a retired railway worker and Madam Mercy Oppong, a businesswoman. He attended Queen Elizabeth Day Care in Takoradi and moved to Tarkwa with his mum who was then on transfer there. He continued school at Gogoe Memorial Preparatory, Tarkwa Secondary School then to Cape Coast Polytechnic where he pursued a course in Mechanical Engineering, but did not complete.
He claimed he always wanted to be a seaman since most his uncles where seamen but did not have qualification. So he decided to go for a certificate at the Nautica College at Nungua in Accra before becoming a seaman, but it was during one of his school’s recess that he found himself entering radio and finding radio interesting, he decided to abandon his dream of becoming a seaman.
Dzokoto claims he would wish an improvement in the film industry for actors to be paid well. Besides he enjoys radio work so much.

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