Dr. Victor Olaiya is considered to be one of the best trumpet players in Nigeria. His career started out playing a variety of music including waltzes and highlifes.
Olaiya was born on 31 December 1930, in Calabar, Cross River State, the 20th child of a family of 24. His parents, Alfred Omolona Olaiya and Bathsheba Owolabi Motajo, came from Ijesha-Ishu in Ekiti State. Olaiya came from a very rich family. His father’s house called Ilọijọs Bar stood on 2 Bamgbose Street, Lagos Island, until it was demolished on September 11, 2016. At an early age, he learned to play the Bombardon and the French Horn. After leaving school he moved to Lagos, where he passed the school certificate examination in 1951 and was accepted by Howard University, US, to study civil engineering. Olaiya instead pursued a career as a musician, to the disapproval of his parents. He played with the Sammy Akpabot Band, was leader and trumpeter for the Old Lagos City Orchestra and joined the Bobby Benson Jam Session Orchestra.
In 1952, Victor decided to form his own band which became known as the Cool Cats. His popularity grew throughout the 1950s and 1960s.
Victor renamed his band to the All Stars Band when they played the 1963 International Jazz Festival in Czechoslovakia.
Olaiya also ran a business that imported and distributed musical instruments and accessories throughout West Africa, and established the Stadium Hotel in Surulere.
In 1990, Olaiya received a fellowship of the Institute of Administrative Management of Nigeria. For a period, he was also president of the Nigerian Union of Musicians.
To get Ilu Le O by Dr. Victor Olaiya as your Ring Back Tune; Text 0601002 to 4100. For MTN subscribers only.