In March 1936, Osadebe was born in Igbo town of Atani, in Southeastern Nigeria. He came from a line of singers and dancers in Igboland. His genre, Highlife encompassed Igbo musical elements. Along with this, calypso, samba, bolero, rumba, jazz and waltz were also present in Osadebe's musical style. It was in his high school years in Onitsha, a major commercial city near Atani, that Osadebe grew interested in music.