Oliver De Coque, a legendary Nigerian guitarist and highlife musician, was honored with a Google Doodle on his 74th posthumous birthday. Ohab TBJ, a Lagos-based illustrator, created the doodle.
The artist posted an image of his work on Instagram and stated that working on the project is a dream come true. He wrote in the caption section, “Ayyyyeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee Darling, I created a @google Doodle. It’s a doodle to honor the late Oliver De Coque, a Nigerian guitarist and one of Africa’s most prolific recording artists, on his birthday today.

“OMG! This is one of my dream project come true and I still can’t believe it!!! Today I’m literally googling everything before the day ends. AD shout out to @helenecleroux. Go Google everything today too darling! (It’s only live in Nigeria tho) Make sure to click on the Doodle to learn more about Chief Oliver De Coque.”(sic)

He was one of Africa’s most prolific recording artists, born Oliver Sunday Akanite. Coque began playing music at the age of eleven. Piccolo, a Congolese guitarist living in Nigeria, taught him how to play the guitar.
He went on to work as an apprentice with juju stars Sunny Agaga and Jacob Oluwale, and by his late teens, he was a star. After gaining international attention with a London performance in 1973, he appeared four years later on Prince Nico Mbarga’s album Sweet Mother.

Coque has recorded approximately 93 albums in his homeland since the release of his debut album Messiah Messiah in 1977. His dance-inspiring “Ogene” style of Nigerian high life, which combines modern high life and traditional Igbo music, has yielded hits such as “People’s Club of Nigeria,” “Nempi Social Club,” “Biri Ka Mbiri,” “Ana Enwe,” “Nnukwu Mmanwu,” and “Identity,” which remained on Radio Nigeria 2’s Top Ten for most of 1981.
Coque was frequently accompanied by his brother Eugene’s Igede International Band. Edu de Coque, Safin de Coque, and Solar de Coque, Oliver’s sons, are all musicians. On June 20, 2008, Oliver De Coque passed away. He was 61.

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