The 73-year-old told a nine-year-old fan, Temidara Onafuye, during a recent visit to the child’s family in Lagos.
Onafuye is a primary school pupil based in North Carolina, USA. She is visiting Nigeria for Christmas and New Year and has been craving to see Sunny Ade because of her love for his music.
Fielding questions from the girl, Sunny Ade said while he could play other musical instruments he had a special passion for guitar.
“Apart from singing. I play guitar, keyboard, different percussion instruments including talking drum ‘Sakara’, ‘Omele’, ‘Konga’; all these make African music stand out. I have passion for guitar, I see it as my baby and I cannot do without it. Couple of years ago, I was rated 69th best guitarists in the whole world,” he said.
“I decided to learn how to play guitar on my own and I bought my first guitar when I was 16 years old. I saved money and bought the guitar for myself. All my family members did not want me to play music because they believed that musicians at that time were not serious people. Eventually, when I bought the guitar I hid it under the staircase.
“I was afraid to tell anybody that I wanted to go into the city for music training where I would be exposed. Luckily for me, I chose my keys and my style of music which is known as ‘Juju.’”
The renowned instrumentalist recalled how he played music with the late comedian, dramatist and actor, Moses Olaiya, popularly known by his stage name ‘Baba Sala’.
“Hardly do people know that Baba Sala was a musician. He played guitar, talking drum and his music was like that of IK Dairo. When he floated the Baba Sala Travelling Theatre, I was the one in charge of the music section,” he said.
Fondly called KSA, Sunny Ade said his fans would not allow him retire, adding “even at 100 years, God willing, I will still be singing.”
The musician signed his autograph for the young girl and promised to invite her as a special guest to any of his concert in the US.