Fela Kuti

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anthony, Sunday, 2 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

word

chaki, Sunday, 2 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

up.

now that that's out of our systems, what's everyones favorite fela piece/alb (and no..."I can't choose...they're all so grate!" bullshit)...

mine is "shakara."

jess, Sunday, 2 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

unknown soldier

chaki, Sunday, 2 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Fave track: "Zombie." Fave twofer MCA reissue: Confusion/Gentlemen.

M. Matos, Monday, 3 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I love 'Zombie,' too, which is the only one I own. But I will gladly pick up more if I see them for a reasonable price.

Clarke B., Monday, 3 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

i like the colonial stuff

anthony, Monday, 3 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

'Coffin for Head of State' is my top pick

dave q, Monday, 3 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

"expensive shit" if even just for the story behind it.

fritz, Monday, 3 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

tell me the story fritz

anthony, Monday, 3 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

It's based on a true story, I guess. As I remember it, the Nigerian military planted a joint on him in order to bust him for possession (why anyone would have to plant dope on Fela is beyond me). Fela ate the joint to avoid being caught with it, so the army held him overnight in order to test his feces for THC, but he paid a fellow prisoner to give him clean shit. In the song, he's clearly delighted at the thought of the cops getting covered in shit. It's funnier than I'm making it sound here and the band is pure Africa 70 brilliance.

Anyone check out any of the recent afrobeat comps? "Afrorock" sounds really interesting, the guy who compiled it spent years travelling around Africa finding original stuff.

fritz, Monday, 3 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Anybody who marries 27 chorus girls at once=pimp. What about Femi Kuti though? Any suggestions for starters?

turner, Tuesday, 4 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

most, if not all, of the Afro-beat compilations of the past couple of years are great: Club Africa 1 and 2, AfricaFunk 1 and 2, the aforementioned 'Afro-Rock', etc

Femi Kuti is a bit disappointing compared with Fela- the tracks with MAW are ok.

m jemmeson, Tuesday, 4 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

anyone wanting a few more Afro-beat suggestions could check here:
http://www .wildsscene.com/music/patch/afr_beat.html

m jemmeson, Tuesday, 4 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

"zombie" definitely seems to be the peak of his career. i can't wait to replace the shitty celluloid vinyl version i have with the cd.

your null fame, Tuesday, 4 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

anybody heard antibalas? I've heard they're really good.

fritz, Tuesday, 4 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

antibalas are pretty much straight-up afrobeat with some latin and jazz elements. if you like fela and want something else with that feel, antibalas is tight. i think some of the same people were in the daktaris, whose _soul explosion_ is a good chunk of afrobeat/james brown funk mixture.

your null fame, Wednesday, 5 September 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

one year passes...
I can't believe I have missed anitbalas playing free concerts two blocks from me on two different occasions.

(Although I think I'm still more annoyed that I missed seeing a free Grupo Niche concert because I didn't know when they were coming on.)

Rockist Scientist, Wednesday, 5 February 2003 02:45 (seventeen years ago) link

one year passes...
it's weird to read really early ilm posts from jess et al--they are so "unsophisticated"/straightforward in attitude/language, relatively speaking. i don't mean that as a dig. i think it's just that this board has kind of developed its own language (i'm sure jess played a large part in that himself) and culture and the posts of those who have been around here for a while have become very densely referential. interesting.

amateur!!!st (amateurist), Sunday, 19 September 2004 06:34 (sixteen years ago) link

whoo, yeah, try early trife posts

jake b. (cerybut), Sunday, 19 September 2004 08:15 (sixteen years ago) link

yeah i know! he's all earnest and into belle and sebastian! like searching around in someone's attic..

amateur!!!st (amateurist), Sunday, 19 September 2004 15:42 (sixteen years ago) link

three years pass...

dancing alone to Fela in living room = only known cure for depression

J0hn D., Saturday, 17 November 2007 16:01 (thirteen years ago) link

temp cure OK but any port in a storm

J0hn D., Saturday, 17 November 2007 16:01 (thirteen years ago) link

>dancing alone to Fela in living room = only known cure for depression

You could also try dancing to Ornette Coleman's early Atlantic recordings, esp. This Is Our Music and "Ramblin'" from Change Of The Century. But I hear ya.

Worth noting: the Spanish label Vampisoul has just released a 2CD compilation of Tony Allen's first four solo albums, and the first three (Jealousy, Progress and No Accomodation For Lagos) feature Afrika 70 as the backing band, including Fela on sax.

unperson, Saturday, 17 November 2007 16:25 (thirteen years ago) link

eight months pass...

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/06/theater/06fela.html?_r=1&oref=slogin

Fela! the off-broadway musical opening in NYC Sept. 4th

Hmmmmmmm....

curmudgeon, Friday, 8 August 2008 03:30 (twelve years ago) link

as long as it has an "!" it should be good

velko, Friday, 8 August 2008 04:03 (twelve years ago) link

The Most Happy Fela in the Whole Niger Delta

gabbneb, Friday, 8 August 2008 04:04 (twelve years ago) link

apparently Fela, Soyinka, Obasanjo and Moshood Abiola all come from the same town

gabbneb, Friday, 8 August 2008 04:09 (twelve years ago) link

finally got "music of many colors" (the roy ayers collaboration) and it far exceeds expectations. i had expected something along the lines of "africa centre of the world", instead i get dubby uptempo spaced-out afro-disco in the vein of tony allen's "NEPA dub". this is tremendous.

still think "coffin for head of state" is the best. shows off his tremendous grooves (second only to ITT or shuffering and shmiling in my mind), his wicked sarcasm ("alluahakbarablahblahblahblah ... wokka wokka wokka"), his righteous anger (they killed his mom!) all in the same track.

moonship journey to baja, Friday, 8 August 2008 07:42 (twelve years ago) link

otm

baaderonixx, Friday, 8 August 2008 07:55 (twelve years ago) link

one month passes...

I came to this thread wanting to write "Coffin For Head Of State" yes yes yes yes yes yes. I have become enthralled by Fela in the past month. not before time.

Tim F, Tuesday, 23 September 2008 13:24 (twelve years ago) link

Can someone recommend the early "L.A. sessions" CD?

baaderonixx, Tuesday, 23 September 2008 13:26 (twelve years ago) link

dancing alone to Fela in living room = only known cure for depression

This close to OTMing, but on second thought it's Ayler's New Grass for me--big fun slapping you on the ass.

RabiesAngentleman, Tuesday, 23 September 2008 13:39 (twelve years ago) link

Though on the other hand, tragically, I'm only familiar with Confusion/Gentleman.

RabiesAngentleman, Tuesday, 23 September 2008 13:39 (twelve years ago) link

tim you must hear "2000 black" (roy ayers w/ fela + afrika 70)

moonship journey to baja, Tuesday, 23 September 2008 14:14 (twelve years ago) link

exact title is "2000 Blacks Got To Be Free"

moonship journey to baja, Tuesday, 23 September 2008 14:15 (twelve years ago) link

^^yes!

andrew m., Tuesday, 23 September 2008 14:47 (twelve years ago) link

also "mr. grammarticologylisationalism is the boss"
lord it's good

andrew m., Tuesday, 23 September 2008 14:50 (twelve years ago) link

two months pass...

http://www.studio360.org/episodes/2008/12/19

Bill T. Jones, the choreographer/director of Fela!, talks about the show and Fela on the radio program Studio 360. It appears the show may run in London shortly and then come back to NYC for a longer run if they can get financing.

curmudgeon, Sunday, 21 December 2008 16:32 (eleven years ago) link

one month passes...
two months pass...

Did anyone see this Yale Prof talk on Monday April 20th at Harvard (Wayne Marshall highlighted this at his Wayne and Wax site)?

Michael Veal, professor of ethnomusicology at Yale, bassist, and the author of two interesting and informed books, Fela: The Life and Times of an African Musical Icon and Dub: Soundscapes and Shattered Songs in Jamaican Reggae* is delivering a lecture at Harvard this afternoon called “Technotopia 1969.”

curmudgeon, Wednesday, 22 April 2009 05:00 (eleven years ago) link

six months pass...

http://www.baltimoresun.com/entertainment/news/bal-fela-jay-z-1117,0,4543991.story

NEW YORK - It's official: After weeks of speculation, Jay-Z and Will and Jada Pinkett Smith have joined the producing team of the Broadway musical "Fela!"

Jay-Z told The Associated Press last month that he might be getting involved in the show, an Afrobeat musical about the life of the late Nigerian musical legend Fela Anikulapo-Kuti. Now producers say he and the Smiths are in, though there's no word on how much of a financial investment the three have made in the show.

"Fela!" is now in previews at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre and opens next Monday. It's directed and choreographed by Bill T. Jones.

kingkongvsgodzilla, Tuesday, 17 November 2009 16:01 (eleven years ago) link

Is Will Smith going to play Fela in the inevitable biopic? With CGI Jada as his 30 wives?

tylerw, Tuesday, 17 November 2009 16:14 (eleven years ago) link

it'd be really funny if "fela: the musical" had all its songs written in the broadway musical idiom.

figuratively, but in a very real way (amateurist), Wednesday, 18 November 2009 01:14 (eleven years ago) link

Andrew Lloyd Weber's Fela!

tylerw, Wednesday, 18 November 2009 01:21 (eleven years ago) link

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/22/theater/22fela.html?_r=1

Lotsa details in this Pareles article on the Broadway show plus the impending cd and vinyl reissues and Antibalas stuff

curmudgeon, Sunday, 22 November 2009 18:58 (eleven years ago) link

Knitting Factory Records has issued “The Best of the Black President,” a two-CD anthology of Fela’s music packaged with a documentary DVD. The label plans to release all of Fela’s nearly four dozen albums on CD and LP, including some that never appeared on vinyl in the United States.

contenderizer, Sunday, 22 November 2009 22:37 (eleven years ago) link

fwiw, C and D on Fela The Musical (off-Broadway verz) from Arthur No. 31/Oct 2008:

http://www.arthurmag.com/2008/10/16/c-d-from-arthur-no-31/

jaybabcock, Monday, 23 November 2009 03:01 (eleven years ago) link

anyone know what the forthcoming stones throw fela album is all about?

andy watt (stevie), Monday, 23 November 2009 08:39 (eleven years ago) link

two months pass...

saw the musical this weekend--really incredible

max, Monday, 25 January 2010 02:29 (ten years ago) link

Femi didn't even bother to come onstage in a shirt in the first place

Artful Dodderer (Shakey Mo Collier), Friday, 24 February 2012 19:56 (eight years ago) link

But he does some disco-beat tracks that Seun would never do

curmudgeon, Friday, 24 February 2012 20:11 (eight years ago) link

I don't think

curmudgeon, Friday, 24 February 2012 20:12 (eight years ago) link

seun is good live, obv not as good as dad and prob not quite as good as femi but still the real deal

the late great, Friday, 24 February 2012 20:23 (eight years ago) link

seun is definitely worth seeing live.. never got to see fela, so this is obviously the next best thing...

and he always opens his show with Zombie, which is killer..

Talcum Mucker, Friday, 24 February 2012 20:45 (eight years ago) link

listened to my first batch of fela stuff, figure I will liveblog in case anybody's interested. I'm no funk/jazz guru so don't expect sophisticated breakdowns, just my gut reactions here...

fela kuti & koola lobitos 64-68
not much of note, some good tunes but recordings are ruff and overall the songs are a bit anonymous. for the curious archivist.

fela fela fela (1969) aka the '69 los angeles sessions
taken aback by how solid this is. whatever was in the water in LA in '69 agreed with him something fierce. bitsize fela, most tracks run 3-4 minutes long. leans more toward upbeat/jazz high life style, but there are hints of the hypnotic incantatory approach he mined on later albums. if you can get a hold of the original version, fela fela fela, it's much better than the remixed one called the '69 los angeles sessions. it almost sounds as though somebody tried to remix it like a heavy funk record, when really this is silky jazz played with finesse, and it benefits from being muted + smooth rather than brash + amped up.

fela's london scene (1969)
a transitional album. longer workouts, with the polyrhythms getting pushed to the fore. unfortunately the material isn't very strong here. standout track "egbe mi o" is rendered in stronger relief on...

live! (1970)
first track "let's start" sounds like a warmup number, but after that this thing really takes off. a stuttering bassline fuels fela's howls on "black man's cry", "egbe mi o" weaves between a catchy descending vocal chant and full-on in-your-face horn hits. apparently redhead tailor, some guy from an english rock band called cream, plays on this. you'd never know, so good on him.

why the black man dey suffer (1971)
title track is ground zero for fela's sound in the 70s. amazing that he went from "my lady frustration" in '69 to this. it grooves, but in a yearning + downbeat way, a confidant, fully-realized pastiche of the styles he'd been mixing and matching for the past few years. the social consciousness angle is front and center now: 'dey took our culture away from us / gave us dem culture no one understand'. flip side is an adequate workout.

ginger baker - stratavarious (1972)
this is listed as part of fela's discog on wiki, which is good because I doubt I would've heard it otherwise. first two songs are collabs w/ fela, the second written by him. they're less musically sophisticated than what he was doing at the time with africa '70, but they're a lot more atmospheric and trippy. worth tracking down. some haunting vocal turns by sandra smith, who introduced fela to the black power movement in LA, a big impact on his aesthetic development.

I GUESS THAT CINNABON GETTIN EATEN (Edward III), Monday, 5 March 2012 19:54 (eight years ago) link

good interview with sandra smith here about her time in LA w/ fela

http://blogs.laweekly.com/arts/2011/12/fela_kuti_los_angeles_sandra_i.php

love this bit

It was really exciting when he auditioned for Disneyland. I was like, "ooh, a free trip to Disneyland!" I was so excited, but at the end of the day, I was disappointed.

Disneyland told Fela that he wasn't playing African music. They wanted him to play in Adventureland.

They had thought he played just stereotypical African music, like what they have on the Small World ride?

They thought he was going to be something else, and they said that he wasn't playing African music at all. How do you tell an African man, playing African rhythms who had studied African music, that he is not playing African music? Crazy. So that was Disneyland.

I GUESS THAT CINNABON GETTIN EATEN (Edward III), Monday, 5 March 2012 20:02 (eight years ago) link

lol wow.

tylerw, Monday, 5 March 2012 20:03 (eight years ago) link

Didn't know Juno Lewis was the one who introduced him. Only other mention of him I've seen is his Coltrane collaboration, "Kulu Se Mama."

Tarfumes The Escape Goat, Monday, 5 March 2012 20:05 (eight years ago) link

him = them

Tarfumes The Escape Goat, Monday, 5 March 2012 20:05 (eight years ago) link

three weeks pass...

I've been given as a gift (!) Vol 2 of the Wrasse records boxsets (mentioned above). It includes the following albums, mostly doubled up 2-per-CD:

Monkey Banana
Excuse O
Everything Scatter
Noise For Vendor Mouth
Teacher Don't Teach Me Nonsense
Koola Lobitos 64-68
The '69 LA Sessions
Roforofo Fight
The Fela Singles
Confusion
Gentleman
Shakara
Fela's London Scene
Expensive Shit
He Miss Road
Stalemate
Fear Not For Man

I only have a passing knowledge of Fela and am enjoying digging into this. "Expensive Shit" is on right now - wonderful.

Duke, Sunday, 1 April 2012 19:04 (eight years ago) link

expensive shit/he miss road are his two greatest LPs IMHO, closely followed by the Ginger Baker album

Nascar Pony (stevie), Monday, 2 April 2012 06:47 (eight years ago) link

hoping E3 continues his liveblog thru Fela's discography

Year of the RMDE (loves laboured breathing), Tuesday, 3 April 2012 13:53 (eight years ago) link

nascar pony 100% OTM.

stirmonster, Tuesday, 3 April 2012 16:05 (eight years ago) link

I will probably stan harder for No Agreement, but I love He Miss Road and Expensive Shit lots!

Year of the RMDE (loves laboured breathing), Tuesday, 3 April 2012 17:34 (eight years ago) link

nonono my name is STEVIE

Nascar Pony (stevie), Tuesday, 3 April 2012 19:05 (eight years ago) link

and thank you

Nascar Pony (stevie), Tuesday, 3 April 2012 19:05 (eight years ago) link

yeah I guess I should catch you guys up huh

diamanda ram dass (Edward III), Tuesday, 3 April 2012 21:03 (eight years ago) link

I just dig readin about it, man

Year of the RMDE (loves laboured breathing), Tuesday, 3 April 2012 22:20 (eight years ago) link

Laurie & I saw Seun a couple of weeks ago and it was really really good even though he was a bit sick from the brutal NW weather

that guy playing the shaker gourd was killin it

Flat Of NAGLs (sleeve), Wednesday, 4 April 2012 03:39 (eight years ago) link

three weeks pass...

new Fela live album 3xCD is awesome-- not prime era material, it's all late 80s era, but still fantastic and fun

ilxor, Sunday, 29 April 2012 15:48 (eight years ago) link

four months pass...

Wrasse are finally releasing the second vinyl box set in a few weeks time..

Curated by Ginger Baker, it will include...

Live With Ginger Baker (1971)
Roforofo Fight (1972)
Confusion (1974)
Alagbon Close (1974)
He Miss Road (1975)
Na Poi (1976)

looking forward to finally getting some of these on vinyl without paying stupid prices...

Talcum Mucker, Wednesday, 5 September 2012 19:32 (eight years ago) link

Ginger Baker record is killer

chicago rap twitter luminary (Shakey Mo Collier), Wednesday, 5 September 2012 19:33 (eight years ago) link

^^

heated debate over derpy hooves (jon /via/ chi 2.0), Wednesday, 5 September 2012 19:56 (eight years ago) link

There's this weird doc streaming on Netflix right now called Ginger Baker in Africa.

Trip Maker, Wednesday, 5 September 2012 20:16 (eight years ago) link

contains my three favourite fela albums - live with ginger baker, he miss road and na poi. i hope they release them separately too so i can get alagbon close.

i have the ginger baker in africa dvd. it's ok, if a little on the short side.

stirmonster, Wednesday, 5 September 2012 21:20 (eight years ago) link

Confusion is such a monster

rob, Wednesday, 5 September 2012 21:51 (eight years ago) link

the Ginger Baker in Africa DVD is worthwhile for the Fela footage alone, but its the live snippet of Segun Bucknor's Sweet Things that makes the film for me... They must have shot loads more footage of those live performances - wonder what happened to it all...

Talcum Mucker, Thursday, 6 September 2012 16:19 (eight years ago) link

Segun Bucknor is so under-rated...

Talcum Mucker, Thursday, 6 September 2012 16:19 (eight years ago) link

yeah that doc is great. is that the one that has the cartoon bit of Ginger traipsing around the continent? very lol

and yeah Segun Bucknor sequence is o_0

stop swearing and start windmilling (Shakey Mo Collier), Thursday, 6 September 2012 16:32 (eight years ago) link

segun bucknor is wonderful!

Trad., Arrrgh (stevie), Thursday, 6 September 2012 17:25 (eight years ago) link

one year passes...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ctyXw5qgNLo

pfunky boyster (Drugs A. Money), Tuesday, 24 December 2013 08:59 (six years ago) link

first real pang of regret that I never ended up moving to Chicago...

pfunky boyster (Drugs A. Money), Tuesday, 24 December 2013 09:00 (six years ago) link

one month passes...

So guess who's arrived on Bandcamp.

http://felakuti.bandcamp.com/

Ned Raggett, Saturday, 25 January 2014 14:55 (six years ago) link

This is absolutely awesome

tsrobodo, Saturday, 25 January 2014 16:13 (six years ago) link

Otm!!!!!!!!

stop ingesting (Drugs A. Money), Sunday, 26 January 2014 09:29 (six years ago) link

wow

curmudgeon, Sunday, 26 January 2014 15:42 (six years ago) link

six months pass...

Six individual vinyl LPs to be released on 1 September 2014

* Fela With Ginger Baker Live!
* Confusion
* Expensive Shit
* He Miss Road
* Sorrow Tears & Blood
* Teacher Don't Teach Me Nonsense

TracerHandVEVO (Tracer Hand), Wednesday, 30 July 2014 09:17 (six years ago) link

not going to lie, would love to have live!, he miss road and expensive shit on vinyl...

a biscuit/donut hybrid called “bisnuts” (stevie), Wednesday, 30 July 2014 09:22 (six years ago) link

nine months pass...

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CGBu6F9UUAAA63Z.jpg

Οὖτις, Wednesday, 27 May 2015 17:05 (five years ago) link

two years pass...

I WANT TO TELL YOU A STORY

Fedora Dostoyevsky (man alive), Friday, 4 May 2018 13:52 (two years ago) link

No be story o

Fedora Dostoyevsky (man alive), Friday, 4 May 2018 14:02 (two years ago) link

E no be story?

Fedora Dostoyevsky (man alive), Friday, 4 May 2018 14:02 (two years ago) link

At all, very very at all.

Fedora Dostoyevsky (man alive), Friday, 4 May 2018 14:02 (two years ago) link

man fela gets me so amped up i feel like i can conquer the world when i listen to him

marcos, Friday, 4 May 2018 14:22 (two years ago) link

Kind of fell down a fela youtube/spotify hole last night after discovering this beautifully shot footage of Africa 70 live --there's not much of that out there.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wz2jXHKa7TY

Fedora Dostoyevsky (man alive), Friday, 4 May 2018 14:53 (two years ago) link

two years pass...

as posted by Ward Fowler on the King Sunny Adé thread:

Fela documentary on BBC2 today:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000pr2n

kiss some penis reference (breastcrawl), Saturday, 21 November 2020 19:21 (one week ago) link

(starts two hours from now)

kiss some penis reference (breastcrawl), Saturday, 21 November 2020 19:22 (one week ago) link

That was a fine documentary. It is now on yt: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pbOXDCqbPZo

walking towards the sun since 2007 (alex in mainhattan), Thursday, 26 November 2020 14:30 (two days ago) link

yesterday it still was, sorry.

walking towards the sun since 2007 (alex in mainhattan), Thursday, 26 November 2020 14:31 (two days ago) link


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