I have only recently become a citizen of ReverbNation, the online music site, and I was digging around for Nigerian music when I came across this oddity, the American Alternative/Rock/Reggae band called Nigeria.
None of the four members of the band are Nigerian. Band drummer Ben Hoffman, bassist Andrew McGuire and guitarist Seth Hoffman, all hail from Gaithersburg, Maryland in the United States. The fourth member of the group, Mike Billingsley, also a guitarist, is from London, UK.
The four of them, who most recently produced the album “Mango”, came together to form Nigeria in 2008. It doesn’t appear any of them share any special connection or history with the west African nation and when asked why they chose to name their band after Africa’s most populous nation, Seth answered, “Why not?”
“We could be another band with another ‘meaningful’ name but who cares? All that matters is the music, names are superfluous,” guitarist Seth said.
The music is fun, quirky and very un-Nigerian. Nigeria’s music has been described as a fusion of Alternative, Rock and Reggae, but the band’s drummer says they don’t embrace any particular label.
“We don’t really like to classify our music. Don’t get too comfortable, we might throw you guys a musical curveball just to change it up. Who knows, one of us might be an underground rapper,” Ben said jokingly.
I don’t know about the rap music, but I’d love to hear them take on some afrobeat. If any American band can do it, Nigeria can, right?
Check out the music below or visit them on ReverbNation.