Oct 18, 2011

Original Wings - Change This World

The Wings were the preeminent band in early 70s southeastern Nigeria, a devastated and demoralized region whose short stint as the sovereign Republic of Biafra had recently been brought to an abrupt halt by the events of the Nigerian civil war (which we will not get into here). Out of this bleak climate a plethora of rock bands emerged, mostly for the purpose of entertaining the occupying federal Nigerian troops, who were just about the only people who had money to spend on recreation.

The Wings, however, had a much farther-reaching appeal, thanks largely to the enormous charisma of heartthrob frontman Spud Nathan (nee Jonathan Udensi), who led the group through such romantic hits as "Kissing You So Hard," "Gone With the Sun" and "Single Boy" and the song featured here, "If You Don't Love Me Girl."

The Wings story took a tragic turn in 1974 when Nathan - while riding to a gig in a car driven by guitarist Manford Best - was killed in an accident on the infamous Njaba Bridge in Imo State. (A decade later, another car crash on that same bridge would claim the life of ex-Funkees and Osibisa guitarist Jake Sollo.)

Nathan's death catapulted The Wings into a tailspin. Most of the band (and their fans) blamed Best for the accident since he had been behind the wheel. Also, he had allegedly had sex with a groupie in the brand new car before it had the chance to be properly "blessed," which was considered to be some bad, bad juju. To add insult to injury, while the rest of the band wanted to go on a yearlong hiatus to mourn Spud, Best insisted that The Wings resume activity immediately with him in the lead singer spot. Eventually, the band went on hiatus for two years while Best broke away and formed Super Wings to relatively little success, due to fan resentment over his role in Spud's death.

After two years of absence, the surviving Wings returned as Original Wings (a.k.a. Wings Original) with the smash hit Tribute to Spud Nathan album. (Inspired by this success, Super Wings immediately released their own Spud Nathan tribute album, and were greeted mostly with groans.) The Spud Nathan dedication featured here, however, is taken from the album Change This World.

Information found on the amazing blog combandrazor.blogspot.com ... thanx!!


01. Help Me Mama
02. Ballad Of A Late Hero
03. Your Obedient Child
04. Loving You
05. Live In Peace
06. Igba Alusi
07. Call You Back Again
08. Change This World

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