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Koo Nimo "The Grand Master of Palmwine Highlife"

Updated: Mar 2, 2022

Agya Koo Nimo was born in 1934 in Fuase, Kumasi. He grew up around Palmwine highlife which he is highly recognised for. Nimo states that his first experience with music was through his father who was a musician in a local brass band. Nimo was also taught music at the Presbyterian school in Kumasi, “I was forced to spend hours listening to Bach and Beethoven as there were some German missionaries there who liked this sort of thing. The German missionaries were militant and they detected something musical in me and felt they should help me”. John Collins, (2018) p 274.

In the late 1950s Nimo left his hometown to Accra to study at the Medical Research Institute, graduating in 1955 he went back to his home town and started his own group called Antobre. The group played pop and Highlife, he played the guitar of course.

Koo Nimo has consistently stuck to his traditional style of highlife music and although he has currently retreated away in his hometown in Kumasi. He is now continually influencing and teaching young highlife musicians.


  • Collins, J., 2018. Highlife Time 3. 3rd ed. Accra: DAkpabli & Associates.

  • Collins, J., 2017. Highlife Giants. Cassava Republic Press.

  • Oti, S., 2009. Highlife music in West Africa. Lagos, Nigeria: Malthouse Press.

Researched and Written by Paulina Nkansah

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