From Diaspora

Donae’O details the origins of his 2009 hit single, Party Hard

The ‘Party Hard’ hitmaker, Ian Greenidge, popularly known as Donae’O (which means – gift from God), has detailed how he came about the song on his IG TV.

The masses that consume good music never think of the creative processes that the artiste had to go through in churning out hits after hits.

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Donae’O walks us through the build up to the global party anthem that shook up the music scene in 2009.

He first admitted that the instrumentals behind ‘Party Hard’ was the work of a Canadian music producer, Suges, for the song, ‘We Belong To The Night’.

After hearing the song, Donae’O fell in love with its instrumentals and sought to place two verses he had already done on a seperate mixtape, back on the instrumentals.

Few friends who heard it loved it and pushed him to do a full recording of it but he was hesitant because he didn’t have a suitable chorus yet.

Eventually, the words for the chorus came to him at a rave he had attended. He recalls that the moment he arrived at the rave, he was met with a large audience jamming to the ‘We Belong To The Night’ song and that’s where the inspiration for ‘Party Hard’ came from.

He further stated, “My friends and I used to drive every Friday to a club known as The Hill and before we entered, we would stop at a petrol station, buy some cider and get tipsy before entering.

We did this to have some real fun inside the club and the whole experience, from waiting outside in the cold in a long queue to having your favourite song played by the DJ once you make it inside, is what the lyrics for ‘Party Hard’ is all about. The whole experience we had at The Hill.”

In November 2008, he released ‘Party Hard’ for free just as a thank you song in appreciation to his fans for supporting the release of his other songs such as African Warrior and Devil in a blue dress. He had no idea that it would be his biggest song ever.

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Apparently, he was only taking 50% of the royalties that came out of the song and would try reaching Suges to have his fair share until he received an email from Suges one day and apologized for bootlegging his song and informed him of his share of the royalties.

Suges downplayed the apology and was rather grateful that someone had made a big hit out of his work. He was moved by Donae’O’s humility and wanted to do some more productions with him.

He also adviced, “no matter the song you bootleg, always give its original composer his due when they reach out to you because you never know when you would need them again”.

Butch Cassidy, Cage, Robinson and his sister, Amy, are four people he normally relies on in deciding which song to release. If they like any song he gives to them to scrutinize, he releases it.

Surprisingly, all four except Cage (he didn’t get to hear it before its release) didn’t like the song. Guys like Butch who had previously picked out some of his biggest hits, defined ‘Party Hard’ as Donae’O’s worst song ever and Robinson who is usually introverted was all over the place ranting about how Donaeo had destroyed one of his most loved songs.

Contrary to their remarks, he loved the song and released it anyway and it turned out to be a global hit.

Donae’O co-produced the song by adding bass lines to the original copy as well.

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Emmanuel Ghansah, Ghana Music

Singer, Songwriter, scriptwriter, blogger, lover of the creative arts, brands and communications expert.

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