The Observer (Kampala)

9 December 2012

Uganda: Papa Cidy Proves He's Man Enough

It is rare to hear of an album launch for an R&B or Afro Beat artiste in the city suburbs. When Papa Cidy (Hamidu Ssekyeru) chose to take his maiden launch to Kanyanya, many thought he had a sense of low self-esteem.

But the young man had other intentions and it was certainly not for fear of a possible flop in Kampala. He simply wanted to associate with the people that had helped him to the top - and they did not disappoint as they filled up Whispers club. Although there was already a sizeable turnout by 8pm, the show did not kick off until 11pm.

In small groups, revellers enjoyed their malwa (local brew) as the women, carrying their babies, gyrated to the music. One would be forgiven to mistake the occasion for an immunization day. After some Karaokeish performances from Solid band crew (they play backup for Leone island) and some village upcoming artistes, the show finally came to life at midnight with performances from Big Chief and Big Eye.

Because it was a village setting, there was no fear that the police would stop the show prematurely. It was further spiced up with performances from Betty Mpologoma and the Leone Island stars Saha, Young Mulo and Skeleton. Towards 1am, Mathias Walukagga unexpectedly showed up and while he was never advertised, he said he wanted to support the young talent.

Through his Bakoowu hit, Walukagga announced the absence of Jose Chameleone, who was undoubtedly a big pulling factor for this show. The man of the show, Papa Cidy came on stage at 1:20am dressed in pink and black and started by apologising: "I don't want you people to think that we are conning you, Chameleone is in Dubai and was supposed to come back by 8pm but he has called and told us that he missed his flight."

This, however, did not stop the chanting fans from enjoying their night. Having convinced the crowds that this was his show not Chameleone's, Papa Cidy, did songs like Your Name, Ba Mugumu, Tupepeya N'owange, Tolina Kisa, Joselina, and Daniella.

Like all artistes, the little man went on his knees to thank fans for not disappointing him and keeping calm despite the delay. He also introduced his mother.

"Thank you, mother, for hassling with me; I lost my father when I was four but it was you who stayed by my side, even when I joined music which most people associate with bayaaye," a teary Cidy said.

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