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Diasporian News of Wednesday, 29 August 2007

Source: NCOGA

MZBEL Wows New York Picnic 2007

New York -- The New York picnic, the mother of all picnics has always been a success in terms of its content for many years. NCOGA, the organizers of the picnic can now boast of being the only Ghanaian powerhouse organization in America , attributed to the success of future superstars through the picnic, the only biggest Ghanaian outdoor event in America showcasing talents. Among the stars emerging are; Akwadaa, Nana Frema, Steve Kelly, Ded Buddy, Tony, Kilanova, Miss D, Ahenfie Nkwadaa and others. Today, you can add another notch to NCOGA’s sleeve, bringing the best of the best to the Big Apple, and the featured artist this year was none other than the “reigning Queen of Hip Life” Nana Ekua Amoah, or Mzbel as she is best known.

Abraham Kwaku Lincoln aka Papa Linc, the official Master of Ceremonies of the mother of all picnics for 5 years in a row was as usual impressive with his jokes and delivery. He has become one of the most sought after MCs to host events in New York .

This year's picnic held at the same location in Orange County , New York , showcased Mzbel. She arrived the day of the picnic and headed straight to the picnic grounds with no rest. Her performance at the picnic was incredible despite being fatigued from flying all night. This proved why people have labeled Mzbel as the Indisputable Queen of Hip Life. According to the Picnic organizers, this year’s lineup was to include VIP, Mzbel, Castro, Tic Tac, and Kofi Nti. Unfortunately, due to some snafu by the US Consulate in Accra (what else is new), they received their visas two days before the event. Mzbel was the only one able to secure a seat on any airline, and even then she had to fly to Lagos before boarding a North American Airlines flight to JFK which arrived the same day of the picnic. In spite of that, Mzbel did not disappoint her fans.
Steve Kelly, R&B/Gospel Hip-life artist from Philadelphia , set the stage for the Queen with two soulful gospel ballads that had the ladies swooning. Suffice it to say that after his performance everyone was anxiously waiting for the Queen to arrive.
The crowd had waited patiently all day, and had been teased constantly by Papa Linc, to the point that some were saying that she was not there. As soon as the white BMW SUV pulled up to the side of the stage, the crowd went wild. Mzbel stepped out in her signature white tank top and Capri pants with high heels waving the flag of Ghana and saluting the crowd. She opened with one of her biggest hits “Logo Ligi” and had the crowd rocking on its feet. Papa Linc then stepped in and did an impromptu interview with the Queen, asking her impression of New York ? She replied that she had barely seen it, and was hoping to take in the sights after the picnic. The crowd started screaming as “Sixteen Years” started playing in the background. Mzbel invited some sixteen year olds on the stage to dance with her. She sang two more songs before closing with a song from a new album that she was working on. The crowd loved her and she thanked the organizers for giving her the opportunity to perform in New York . She said she always loved New York and was excited when she got the call to come down and perform. She promised to be back anytime the organizers want her back, and judging from the crowd response, don’t be surprised to see a poster advertising a New York Concert featuring Mzbel in the very near future.
NCOGA would like to extend their sincere appreciation to Hasheem Haruna of Boogie Down Nima Productions for once again taking over the entertainment aspect of the picnic. It is easy to see why all the top artists both here and in Ghana have come to enjoy working with Hasheem. He is honest, dedicated, and always cool. He has definitely raised the picnic to a whole new level, and we would like to wish him continued success. As Mzbel said after the show, without Hasheem’s efforts, she would not have made it to New York . Much love also to DJ Ronny who was as usual fantastic on the turntables spitting out hit songs like they were out of style. Ronny has really grown into one of the best Ghanaian DJ’s around.
NCOGA also extends their sincere appreciation to all the sponsors including perennial companies such as North American Airlines, Royal Air Maroc, Western Union, Vigo Money Transfer, Money Gram Money Transfer that announced a new partnership with Ghana Commercial Bank, Affinity Health Plan, the one and only African Movies Mall, Prestige Travel, ITE, Mohammed’s African Restaurant (African Grill), Dondo Magazine, Ambassadorway Travel, Delta Airlines, Nasare Enterprises, and all the other vendors who made it there trying to get their goods to the community. Also sincere appreciation to all the churches, and mosques as well as other groups not part of NCOGA who organized themselves this year in order to enjoy the festivities.
Thanks also to all the up and coming music stars some of whom traveled from as far away as Canada to make the event and showcase their talents. As stated earlier, the New York Picnic is the only stage where newcomers get their chance to perform, and it is hoped that all newcomers would contact the organizers early so that they can be put on the list. Much love also goes to Mzbel and her Manager Leke for the extra effort it took to make it to New York .
NCOGA also thanks His Excellency Leslie Christian, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Ghana to the United Nations for attending the event and speaking to the people. He urged the young people to enjoy themselves but not to overindulge so that everyone would get home safely. Also, appreciation goes to His Excellency Obeng Gyan Busia, the Consul General who sent his well wishes to picnic goers even though he was in Ghana attending to some important issues. A big round of applause goes to the organizers of the picnic, NCOGA and all the associations that make up the organization for creating an avenue for future superstars and upcoming talents who will forever be grateful.
Please visit www.ncoga.org to view more pictures of the picnic and or to contact the organizers for future events.



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