On Thursday I went to Sadler's Wells to see the Tony Award-winning musical, FELA! It was a fantastic show with great music and even better dancing that tell the true story of Fela Kuti and his nightclub, The Shrine. As a result, I've had Fela's unique Afrobeat stuck in my head. So, please enjoy this week's picks, inspired by the legendary Fela Kuti.
"ITT (International Thief Thief)" - Fela Kuti
The Nigerian pioneer of Afrobeat, Fela Anikulapo Kuti was not only a legendary musician, but also a political activist, speaking when many would not. He set out to use his music as a weapon and fight the political corruption. This track was an attack on International Telegraph and Telecommunications.
"Dem Bobo" - Femi Kuti
The son of Fela, Femi is carrying the name of Afrobeat ambassador. Though one of Fela's other son's, Seun, is also continuing the tradition, I personally prefer Femi's music. 'Dem Bobo' is from Femi's most recent album Africa for Africa, which won the 2011 Songlines Music Award for Best Artist.
"Yellow Fever" - FELA!
Here's a sneak peek at a track from the musical FELA! The spectacular music and dancing make up for the jumpy story line. I highly recommended my London readers to pop over to Sadler's Wells and catch it before it leaves, and all my international readers to keep an ear out and definitely catch it if the show comes your way.