Faisal, Dwamena Dead

GHANA’S entertainment industry has once again suffered a blow with the
news of the death of legendary Ghanaian music producer, Faisal Helwani
and Michael Dwamena, a US-based Ghanaian musician of Ngozi fame.

Reports indicate that Michael Dwamena, composer of the hit song ‘Ngozi’, died at a Texas hospital in the early hours of Monday after complaining of stomach upset.

The fine musician, who has carved a niche for himself in Ghanaian highlife music, was spotted during this year’s Ghana Music Awards.

According to his managers, Dwamena was in the country to put finishing touches to his video clip and the launch of his latest album “Owo Mo Ntsi”.

Musically Dwamena was in a class of his own; a perfectionist who found delight in the musical works he created.

Michael also known as The Ice-Cream Man shot to stardom with his hit single “Ti Bi Di” which topped the charts for several weeks.
Albums Michael has so far released include ‘Chaskele’ and ‘Prayer’.
His latest single “Ngozi” has enjoyed massive airplay.

In a related development one of Ghana’s legendary music producers, Faisal Helwani also died last Sunday in Lebanon where he was seeking medical attention. As to which sickness caused his death could readily not been established but sources said for the past months Helwani had grown weak.

In a short interview with Beatwaves, Carlos Sekyi, one of his close pals in the music industry, described the late Helwani as “a legend”.

“The legend is gone. We will forever remember him. His name will forever be written on platinum and gold. He has done a lot of good to the music industry.

He did not look at the commercial value of the music he produced but helped bring up good music legends,” Carlos said.

Until his death Faisal Helwani was an acclaimed Ghanaian music producer and exponent of contemporary highlife and Ghanaian traditional music.

He was a founding member of the Musicians Union of Ghana, the CEO of Bibini Music, first president of the Phonogram Producers’ Society of Ghana and the first president of the International Federation of Phonogram Industries, Ghana branch.

He is also the owner of the Napoleon Club which hosted stars like Stevie Wonder in the 60s.

Helwani was the manager of Fela Kuti and a legend for his engagements in music in West Africa. He was an active participant and observer of the Ghanaian music scene who constantly fought for the rights of musicians in Ghana.

According to some of his friends and business associates, Faisal was a composer, arranger, producer, musician and leader.

Many of his close pals were very proud of him as he loved to associate himself with all.

“We all remember him as a hardworking brother who has never stopped to be creative and fashionable; Good manners, quick to laugh, engaging personality, he was good company, and like all the best people, ever disposed to engage younger artistes without condescension.

“The love of his chosen profession was infectious so that it was a joy for those who worked closely with him. He was a very private person who opened up when he considered it expedient.”

Mac Tontoh of Osibisa fame, in a chat with Beatwaves said he was sad because Faisal was a very good friend whom he described as a veteran music producer, adding that Faisal had contributed a lot to the growth of the Ghanaian music industry.

Many of his friends who also spoke to Beatwaves said he was a strict person who lived a principled life and was known for being forthright; He was frank, honest and business-like on issues which required decisions.

He proved on a number of occasions to be a very generous and caring individual and had a warm and pleasant personality.