Afro Pop

Agege: from ponpon to Zanku Dance Beat

Self-acclaimed Nigerians favorite boy Tekno released Agege to the world and it’s a good improvement. Tekno was becoming boring to listen to with his excessive use of ponpon beat. He sounded like Migos in Culture two. Making songs with same beat, flow and message. He and Davido were the two artist that were caged by the ponpon beat. Kpolongo was the first song that he showed deviation from his normal beat. Although there was mixed reception because of copyright issues with the real owners (Danfo Drivers). There was clear show of intent on how he wanted his music to go. Tekno’s  Agege song is also a diversion from a ponpon slow beat to a zanku dance beat which is another right step in the right way.


Agege is a name of a community in Lagos state Main Land. It’s one of the few cheap residential areas in Lagos, Nigeria and is home of some of the craziest commercial bus conductors known as Danfo. Tekno uses the word “Agege” like any conductor will use it when ushering passengers into the bus. He sings about how money changes the life of a man as it regards to their relation to women. Explaining this he sings of how men are rejected and frowned at by classy ladies because they are broke. Summing up his statement, he declares that when a man is financially buoyant; many things fall in place especially women. He claims that everything about ladies can be triggered with money just like a fisher man with a bait and hook.

Featuring the Zanku Master himself “Zlantan”; he brought his sauce to the already groovy beat. The Rapper who has cemented his name as a C-class artist flowed with his rap. He states that everything about life is all vanity hence he will enjoy his life.

In summary the song is all about African ladies and how materialistic some of them can be. They sing of Nigerian, Ghanaian and South African girls who are only after men with money. They do so giving description of their body and Attitude. Songs like this are music which are loved not for their message but their ability to light up the dance floor. Tekno may just have gotten groove back.

The Beat

Tekno has always been a seasoned producer with good awareness of the dance hall. He understands the plugins and knobs to use when mixing and mastering a party jam. He brought his best game in this Jam. Although the lyrics are not totally okay for a musicians of his pedigree, he tried to bring the beat and general production to its best.

The Zanku Dance beat is an extension of makosa sub genre of Afro pop. The beat is characterized by dropping the kicks like a ponpon or afrobeat sequence. It also involves replacing the makosa snare with bottle or Iron hat sound. This gives it a local sound which has close relationship with Jairation beat. What the kick change does is to reduce the tempo from a fast flow makosa beat to a mid tempo afropop beat with lots of relationship to afrobeats.

The Video

A video which features Tekno in a glass Truck with a hand full strippers is a statement from a wild young rich man. The video which is shot in two major location was lightened up by the Zanko dance steps. The under bridge dance scene was my best scene because it was cheap and lit. The only directing stunt that was pulled off was the stripper bus and it sure got the attention that was needed even before the beat was released. TG Omori should have been more creative with the video because there were lots of hidden messages that would have been conveyed if he good thought was given to the story board.


Valentine Chiamaka

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