Nigerian synth-funk pioneer William Onyeabor dies aged 70
William Onyeabor, the man whose mastery of business was as brilliant as his music. The pioneer of Nigerian electronic funk has died aged 70.
“It is with incredibly heavy hearts that we have to announce that the great Nigerian business leader and mythic music pioneer William Onyeabor has passed away at the age of 70. He died peacefully in his sleep following a brief illness, at his home in Enugu, Nigeria” Luaka Bop post on Onyeabor facebook page read.
The savvy Nigerian artist self-released groundbreaking electronic-funk albums, from 1977-1985, earning him acclaim across the continent and beyond. The 9 albums were recorded, and printed at his personal pressing plant Wilfilms Limited.
However Onyeabor who once served as the President of Enugu’s Musician’s Union later abandoned music to focus on business and later became a born-again Christian.
The man and his works were brought into the music limelight once again after the release of “Who Is William Onyeabor?” in 2013 and the film “Fantastic Man” Onyeabor, who according to David Byrne’s record label Luaka Bop’s post, would never speak of himself had for a longtime refused to talk about his music after he got saved.
William Onyeabor was born in March 26, 1946, he leaves behind his wife, four children and four grandchildren.