Monday, February 29
The 90 Minute Guide: Fela Kuti
"Few musical artists of the 20th Century have a biography as incredible as Fela Kuti’s. The Nigerian bandleader and pioneer of Afrobeat was born to politically progressive parents, attended university in London, started a highlife band in the ’60s which evolved into Africa 70, and recorded some early sessions in Los Angeles before having to split the country in a matter of days. In the ensuing years, Kuti would soon start a commune in Nigeria he dubbed the Kalakuta Republic, learn to play saxophone (and quite well at that) and increasingly compose funkier and more expansive Afrobeat tracks with lyrics detailing political and social strife in West Africa. One of his songs resulted in the burning and brutal attack on the Kalakuta Republic, and in return, Kuti sent a replica of his mother’s coffin to the Head of State. ..."