A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z #
Born to a Nigerian mother and a Cameroonian father on Jan 1, 1950 in Abakaliki, Nigeria, Prince Nico embraced the musical traditions of both cultures. Prince Nico's music was inspired by the five years he spent in Cameroon during the Nigerian Civil War in the late 1960's. He played the xylophone, conga, drums, and electric guitar in school bands and he made his professional debut as a member of a hotel band, the Melody Orchestra, in 1970. He formed his own group, Rocafil Jazz, after returning to Nigeria two years later and performed regularly at the Naza Hotel in Onitsha. In 1973, Nico and his group released a single which was met with little fanfare but their second single, "I No Go Marry My Papa," became a regional hit. In 1976, Prince Nico and his band, Rocafil Jazz, released the biggest African hit ever, the classic "Sweet Mother" . The album soon became a national anthem, largely because of its emphasis of motherhood and its brilliant fusion of Cameroonian, Nigerian, and Zairean styles (highlife and Congo music). "Sweet Mother" sold over 13 million copies, was sung in Pidgin English and by the end of the 1970's Prince Nico's influence was going international and reshaping the music of some Ghanaian and Caribbean bands.