A newly constructed cultural centre in Port Harcourt has been named after highlife music giant, Cardinal Rex Jim Lawson by the Rivers State Government.
The state Governor, Nyesom Wike, named the centre after the legendary musician on Saturday which was commissioned by the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi.
The thus will be called “Rex Lawson Cultural Centre.”
According to the governor, the name was to immortalise the musician whose music not only promoted the state but the country.
It was gathered that the centre was abandoned by previous administration before the present government completed it.
The centre is expected to be leased to private managers.
Oba Ogunwusi commended the Rivers State Government for promoting culture, tourism and tradition through the centre.
Born on March 4, 1935, Lawson died in 1971 in a car accident on his way for a show in Warri. He was 36 years old.
Known as Cardinal Rex, he was a singer, trumpeter and bandleader from Kalabari ethnic extraction.
He began his career as a band boy for Lord Eddyson’s Starlight Melody Orchestra. He later played with Sammy Obot, Bobby Benson, Victor Olaiya, Chris Ajilo, and other Ghanaian and Nigerian musicians and bands.
His greatest success came as the leader of the Majors Band (also called the Rivers Men in later years); their recorded hits include So ala teme, Yellow Sisi, Gowon Special, and Jolly Papa.
A highly emotional and deep musician, Lawson was known to weep and shed tears while singing his own songs, notably the haunting So ala teme.