Sunday A. Ajayi


There are many Nigerian art music composers with different ideologies, styles, techniques, and approaches to their works. Some dwell mainly on writing for the instruments, others for voices or a combination of the two. This paper, hinged on inter-acculturation theory, aims at analyzing three selected works of DotunOlayemi, a Yoruba church musician, and to bring out some techniques employed in developing these works. The primary source comprises an unstructured interview with the composer. The secondary source includes books, journal articles, newspaper, magazines, musical scores and the Internet. Findings show that themes of analyzed works are got from common church choruses and hymns, developed and rearranged for voices and organ accompaniment, employing techniques like imitation, ostinato, extemporization, repetition, contrapuntal polyphony, modulation, and interludes. It is also revealed that the motive of each theme is subtly included in a brief introduction with a touch of suspense. This paper, therefore, concludes that, although DotunOlayemi is a part-time musician, the foundation of his musicianship from his family and church background, having been exposed to music from his childhood has built-in him a wealth of compositional ability that rivals adept scholarly composers. Further studies need to be conducted to establish the stylistic uniqueness of Olayemi's compositions, a preliminary study in this paper has revealed a few techniques that are prevalent in the three works analyzed.


Keywords: Composition, Analysis, inter-acculturation, Church musician.

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