Northern Uganda entertainment industry mourned the untimely death of legendary traditional musician Ogwang Clipper who invented the maestro of Acholi nanga music. He died at the age of 84, after a battle with diabetes and other ill-health.
He was born in 1936/1/1 (84 years old) from Olupe Opong village, Geregere Sub Country in Agago District.
The news for his death was broken by his daughter Ogwang Fiona who confirmed to LuoTunes.Com in an interview on Thursday morning.
She said her dad passed away on Thursday morning at 8: 11 a.m from Gulu Regional Referral Hospital where had been admitted for treatment since last week on Saturday.
"At the time of his admission, my dad has been complaining of abdominal and chest pain," she said.
Ogwang Clipper is survived by a widow and over 10 children from two women. His body has been taken to the 4th division and barracks mortuary in Gulu awaiting burial plans.
EDUCATION: No Formal Education reported; Obtained key lessons at fire place - Wang-Oo.
Father: Nakuconi Bala, of Padyang Clan.
Mother: Angom Dolopina, of Oyima Clan.
His parents had produced 8 children, but only 2 of them are alive, him and his sister Nekolina Akot, who is married in Olupe Agoro clan.
1954: Started learning to sing from the fire place from his late father. He would be watching closely how his father would be playing the Nanga in the evening. In the morning, when his dad has gone to the garden, he would steal the Nanga from his dad’s house and learn how to play. He said, his dad would often realise that he has tampered with the Nanga and quarrel till when he gave up, and that is how he finally learnt to play the instrument.
This song was based on the occurrence then; he said bonyo is a locust scourge that destroys crops. They are of 2 types;
1. BONYO LAGARA which totally destroys a plant from its roots.
2. BONYO ABUM, which is less dangerous and eats only part of the plant.
At that time, Bonyo Lagara was causing havoc in his area.
BEST AND MOST LOVED SONG - NGOM KWARO TYE MALO
Tye Agago. He says, he always missed home and longed for when he would return to his ancestral home, since he was living outside home most of the time. It’s the song he reflected on when his son came to pick him back from Kitgum in 2017, to Olupe Opong, Gere Gere where he has settled in his ancestral home to date.
NANGA SONGS COMPOSED - To date, Ogwang Clipper has played a total of 458 Nanga songs.
1956-1957: Learnt how to play guitar and emerged Champion in Agago, Omoro and Chua then later represented Northern Uganda in guitar entertainment before retiring from playing the instrument in 1960.
1960-1962: Explored his talent in the Larakaraka (courtship dance). He proudly mentions how he Was a local rack champion in composing orak songs and gives a vivid memory of how he sung against the mother of Opio Mikele and his brother till when they reported the matter to the Sub County Chief, then Abunoni Lagen commonly refered to as Obutu Lii.
In another song, he sung against Opio, in a community festival in Lacek village till when Opio conceded defeat before the Chief that he won’t compete with Kilipa in singing. In the dance arena, Opio was helpless as the young ladies were just avoiding him.
In 1962-1963, he created a Dingi Dingi dance team at that time, there was a traditional dance competition and IGP Eronayo Oryema was sent to select the best performing teams for a regional completion. And out of 11 teams, his team emerged the best and was selected alongside another team from Opete and Kitgum and was sent to Gulu, thereafter to Egypt, Nigeria, and West Germany.
INITIATED THE FORMATION OF HEARTBEAT AFRICA, A TRADITIONAL DANCE UNION.
He then later resumed his famous Nanga music, which he can still sing the lyrics very well to date, but due to health problems can’t play the instrument well now.
In 1971-1979, he worked as an Entertainer with Uganda Hotels, with the main task being entertaining guests in the evening hours as assigned.
In 1986-1991, he also served as a nursing assistant in Kitgum Hospital when most of the health workers had run away because of insurgency. He basically supported in caring for war victims, who came to seek treatment of their wounds at the facility.
The 1990s to date: Traditional Doctor, with proven talents in treating amongst others:
1. Two Lubanga or two cola (A sickness that causes the bending of the chest of the victim.
3. Treating pregnancy cases. These, he said he has traditional medicine that minimizes/heal extreme pains experienced by women always