By Bayo Osiyemi
Ì just learnt of the passing of a friend, brother, and consummate business whizkid in the music industry, Mr. Mutiu Ola Kassim this evening.
We are all destined to die at one time or the other; therefore, the issue of death should not be accorded too much importance because it is a debt we all owe. But when it occurs, it reminds one of the good deeds of death’s victim while on earth.
M.Ola Kassim, of Oke Agbo in Ijebu Igbo, Ogun State and a paternal relation of one of Ijebu’s foremost industrialists and chairman of Shokas Textiles Industry, Chief Olanrewaju Arigbabuwo Kassim, worked his way from lowly background up, to become a force to reckon with in the music industry.
After the pioneering efforts of the record label owners of the 60s like Chief Jossy Olajoyegbe of JOFABRO Records Company, Chief Badejo Okusanya of BADEJO Records Company, M. Ola Kassim stormed the music scene between the late 70s and 80s with his Ibukun Orisun Iye Records as well as the allied record distribution company, MUT-MUKSONS. popularising the name of his operational base, Ojo Oniyun Street off Apapa Road, in Ebute Metta, Lagos, on the airwaves.
He came into the business big, to compete with older establishments like DECCA and TAKE YOUR CHOICE (TYC) Records of late Chief Bolarinwa Abioro; no wonder big names in music like King Sunny Ade swarmed around him, like bees to honey.
KSA is a sellable brand in the Juju world and MUT-MUKSONS invested heavily in his promotion. It was during this period that Sunny Ade’s rise to true international ascendancy began.
But the most remarkable of his musical enterprising forays was in the mid 80s when his MUT-MUKSONS company collaborated with my company, PENBY COMMUNICATIONS Ltd, to promote a duet between King Sunny Ade and Onyeka Onwenu in a birth control promotional blitz titled “WAIT FOR ME”, sponsored then by the nation’s birth control agency.
It was targeted at preaching against uncontrolled birth rate by Nigerians, with KSA and Onyeka emphasising ” If you love me, you will wait for me” in their lyrics. The record disc sold out in millions within a very short while.
That particular duet was the crowning reward for M. Ola Kassim’s unique marketing endeavours in the time of the 75 years old man who converted to Christianity and adopted the name of his white garment church, Ibukun Orisun Iye for his record marketing company.
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