After more than 28 years on air with KRCL, World Village's Eduman will be hanging up the mic after this Saturday's show. Tune in at 7:00pm, Saturday the 10th, to celebrate Eduman and the amazing music he has brought us over the years, one last time!
And now a word from Eduman.
My journey with you into the world of global music will reach its proverbial end of the road in a few days from now – this Saturday march the 10th.
I had to put this something down in writing (actually Ebay suggested it and I concurred) because there is no way I can reach each one of you individually to have those little bittersweet words and hugs and convey my experience with the program and how each and everyone have made it a show like no other. To be fair when global music was installed as part of a staple in a myriad of programs on KRCL, host like Steven Seftel and Nancy Fillat cannot be forgotten and so are a few other hosts in-between like Williams and other standalone hosts for Polynesian and Vietnamese shows. These hosts and their unique voices tastes and styles had given and continue to give KRCL a unique position in the arena of broadcasting and you all have a lot to do with it. Did I hear a part or two on your back? Yes indeed.
I never thought I was going to be given this opportunity, let alone allowing me to drive and stair world music for 28 yrs. By the way, Ebay told me that I started in January of 1990. What a ride! Never in my dreams.
My guess is that by now the pressing question is how did it all started. Very simple- KRCL. Back in the early 80s the station was one heck of a phenomenon. I know a lot of would agree on that. Ok I believed That. So, if you do agree, think of a lonely young man just landed from Nigeria who would always wonder how it would feel like listening to a radio that offers something he is familiar with in a sea of music by Dooby brothers, Peter Frampton and bee gees Oh mine awesome Ah! I came to this country the year Frampton released his “do you feel like we do” Don’t get me wrong I had always enjoyed rock and roll. In fact, I used to listen to the who, Grand Funk railroad, Led Zeppelin etc. Listening to these artists put me in the odd ball category when I was in high school. In fact, I was even more of an odd ball with my own immediate family. I remember listening to deep purple one-time from portable player loud and shrill. My Dad mumbled does anybody know where he gets this wacky (closest to what he meant) crazy music from? A few of my siblings who were around Dad quietly said Shock their heads saying “No” to Dad affirming his fear and in a way agreeing with him. I was the only one as far I can remember that would spend his hard-earned money to buy a Led zeppelin vinyl. The good thing back then was that, I was listening to the “who’s of the world with other native and commercial music in Nigeria – Highlife, Juju music etc. In Utah that was not the case. So, when I would listen to group like Dooby Brothers, and like, it began to grow stale. It would have been awesome if there were some soul/R&B and Funk station. But there was none in Utah back in those days.
Enter KRCL. Some of you remember Ozwald Balfour a fellow from Trinidad and Tobago. I met him in some class up at the U 1981 I think, and as we were getting to know each other he mentioned that he was hosting a music and news program from the Caribbean and Africa. Mostly from the Caribbean as I found out. I thought wow! How did this guy get this gig in Utah? I went out to blue mouse to make sure such a station has a physical existence. Found the station and I could not believe my eyes and ears. Though small in stature, I knew it was going to become a power house to be reckon with because as I said earlier on it was already a phenomenon for just being. It was, as somebody described the station an oasis in a sea of bland commercial radio. There was a host and I can’t remember the name now that would play reggae music every now then on her show. That was the day I thought Life was good that may be things are not just that foreign even here Utah and even if they are, they are manageable - it is just life you can’t have it your way all the time. Enjoy the little you have because it could be worst.
Fast forward, a couple of years later. A friend of mine who also happened to be a friend to Doc Floor’s family – Michael Hatsis (forgive me, is possible I butchered the spelling) She was invited for training for the soul purpose of hosting reggae show. Notice what is going on. A second friend is about going on air at my favorite radio. Can I host? No way with that strange African accent. The accent that sound like the natives trying to speak English on Tarzan shows. No way!
Michael Hatsis would encourage me a lot to think about becoming part the station. I donated, volunteered in so many ways. And I had some fun while at. I remember my fondest memory was years later long after I had been hosting global gumbo. I was part of KRCL contingent during one of the many Gay pride parade. Somebody suggested being one of those on the float decked out not just in costume but as a drag queen. At first it did not sound like a good idea. Look like a drag queen? All I need is for this to be known in the Nigerian community in Salt Lake City. I couldn’t imagine what would happen, not to even mention my parents especially Mom. At this point, Dad was so advanced in age it wouldn’t have mattered to him. But then, as faith will have it, with more coaxing I agreed.
I was dressed in this glittering dress and I thought that was so funny hilarious with muscles popping out everywhere. I thought if any man especially a young man doubts how muscular he is, he should put on a nice tight dress and he would make a believer out himself. It was so much fun I could not believe how ridiculous I looked. Suddenly it was ridiculousfun! It reminded me of masquerades back home except in this case your face is showing.
Before then, with familiarity of the station, members and staff, I began to get use to the thought of considering hosting primarily African music. I had a collection of Congolese and west African music on vinyl and cassettes. I finally applied for training in broadcast radio. Was accepted and did the training, got the license and started a 3am to 6am show. I can’t remember what it was called, but I was pretty much playing what I could find in the library and some from my collections. It included a lot of Congolese Nigerian, west Africa, and 70s and early 80s R&B/soul. So, my show started in January of 1990.
My foray into broader sphere of musical genre was not by accident. The moment I started getting comfortable behind the mic, I knew I had to play stuff that tend to lurk somewhere in my minds background. Stuff you wish you could share with friends and loved ones. That tendency would not have happened without my Mom. She would hum to anything even though it can be so strange and unfamiliar. She tends to hum to stuff with language she didn’t even understand. I remember I would often ask her what that are said in the song and she would tell me they were encouraging me to accompany her - mom to the market (she would make me carry a bundle of vegetables grown in our back yard) with her to the market and that if I did, that would automatically make me an exceptional boy that would earn me some goodies. Well I believed her until I knew better. But the magic here to me, listening to her sing was the ease at which she would sing songs that are done in foreign language. If you didn’t know Mom you would think she was from a different ethnicity/Nationality and in case of Cuban music, associated with that country since she was obviously not Cuban. She sounded so convincing cool. Mom was so damn cool when cool was just a rookie.
I can’t sing but I can appreciate stuff that is so out of the norm or untraditional. I found out if you let it play in the background without consciously saying, “let me listen to this”, you will be amazed on what you could hear and pick up.
I am moving to a new chapter and this is not going to be the last time you are going to hear from me. Some of you now know that I am going to be sitting in for some hosts as time goes on just for starters. And talking about sitting in for another host. I want to take this moment to thank the Lioness (Shari Smith) , Steve Rivetti and Others whose name I can’t remember now for subbing for even on a very short notice. Words cannot express how grateful I am for the help you rendered me over the years.
So, with that (if you can tolerate my typing so far) join me on the 10th this coming Saturday for the last show of World village on KRCL 90.9 FM.