“Yɛn Ara Asase Ni” – Dr. Ephraim Amu

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This morning, I mistakenly clicked on a music file on my phone but before I could stop it, the lyrics caught my attention… again! So I ended up putting it on repeat. It’s no other song than the good old classic piece “Yɛn Ara Asase Ni” composed by our very own Ephraim Amu (13 September 1899 – 2 January 1995).

Ephraim Amu, a native of Peki in the Volta region of Ghana, was a famous Ghanaian composer, musicologist, and teacher. He composed several songs, many of which evoked the spirit of patriotism and nationalism in Ghanaians. “Yɛn Ara Asase Ni” is one such patriotic song and I thought I should share it with you. Do take a listen.

Lyrics of “Yɛn ara asase ni” by Dr. Ephraim Amu

TwiEnglish

1st Stanza

Yɛn ara asase ni

Ɛyɛ aboɔdenden ma yɛn

Mogya a nananom hwie gu, nya de too hɔ maa yɛn

Aduru me ne wo nso so

Sɛ yɛbɛyɛ bi atoa so

Nimdeɛ-ntraso, nkotokrane ne apɛsɛmenkomenya

Adi yɛn bra mu dɛm

Ama yɛn asase ho dɔ atɔm’ sɛ

1st Stanza

 

This is our (own) homeland

It is priceless to us

Our forefathers gained it for us at the peril of their lives

It is the turn of you and I

To continue the legacy

Know-it-all behavior, cheating and selfishness

Has maimed our character

And diminished our love for our land

Chorus (2x)

Ɔman no sɛ ɛbɛyɛ yie oo!

Ɔman no sɛ ɛrenyɛ yie oo!

Ɛyɛ nsɛnnahɔ sɛ, ɔmanfo bra na ɛkyerɛ

Chorus (2x)

Whether this nation prospers!

Or it (the nation) doesn’t prosper!

Clearly depends on the character of the citizenry

2nd Stanza

Nwoma nimdeɛ huhugyan

Anaa adenya ara kwa

Ne ɔbrakyew de, ɛsɛe ɔman na ɛbɔ no ahohora

Asoɔmmerɛ ne obuo pa

Yɔnkoɔ yiediepɛ daa

Ahofama ntetekwaam’

Ma onipa biara yiedie

Ɛnonom na ɛde asomdwoeɛ ne nkɔsoɔ pa brɛ ɔman

2nd Stanza

Bragging of educational achievements

Or useless greed for material things

And bad lifestyles, destroy and disgrace our nation

Obedience and respect

Care for others’ welfare daily

Selflessness in the traditional way

Ensures each person’s welfare

These are what bring peace and prosperity to our nation

Chorus (2x)

 

Ɔman no sɛ ɛbɛyɛ yie oo!

Ɔman no sɛ ɛrenyɛ yie oo!

Ɛyɛ nsɛnnahɔ sɛ, ɔmanfo bra na ɛkyerɛ

Chorus (2x)

Whether this nation prospers!

Or it (the nation) doesn’t prosper!

Clearly depends on the character of the citizenry

Below is a contemporary hiplife rendition of “Yɛn Ara Asase Ni” by Lynx Entertainment ft. various artistes.

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