Daniel "Koo Nimo" Amponsah
I was born with the name Kwabena Boa-Amponsem, I was baptized
Daniel Amponsah. On stage, I took the name "Koo Nimo"-"Koo"
is a male child born on Friday, "Nimo" means "someone
who takes the blame for something he has not done." I was
born at Foase, Atwima No. 1, in the Asante region of Ghana, West
Africa. My father, Opanin Kwame Amponsah was a trumpeter, a guitarist,
a tailor, a builder and a shoemaker. My mother, Akua Fokuo, sang
in the Methodist church. So I was born into a musical family.
When I was eight, my sister, Akua Fosuaa, married Nana Kwame Bonsu,
the late Otumfuo Opoku Ware's brother (Asantehene or King
of the Asante). So I moved from my village to live around the
palace. By living in the palace, I became exposed to the activities
in the court. For example, the day before the festivals Adae or
Odwira, there would be performances heralding the great days.
In the evening we would hear ceremonial horns, then master drummers
would play attributes and appellations for all the kings that
had ruled the nation. When the Queen Mother had to leave her house
for the main palace, it was often my role to carry her umbrella
and follow her, something I longed to do. I learned how the court
settled cases, where traditional jurisprudence was practiced,
and I learned court language, where proverbs and figures of speech
are very important.