Son of a Legend- Femi Kuti

Published 6 years ago by: krisdani
at 23-08-2013 08:35PM (6 years ago)

(86 | Newbie) (m)
Son Of A Legend – femi kuti

The popularity of Afrobeats continues to soar. There have been attempts to represent it as a new genre, however, Afrobeats has a rich history that dates back decades. Nigerian music legend Fela Anikulapo Kuti is largely credited as the pioneer of Afrobeats.

A gem in his time, Fela became that iconoclastic African figure, around whose weight the African music movement properly took off. Very few of Africa’s legendary musicians, even with all their goodwill, are able to match Fela’s standing.

Everywhere he went; he was worshipped, as much for his activism as for his music. Throughout his active years, Fela made a conscious effort to nurture others, and those he inspired have become a key part of his legacy.

His son Femi, who joined his band at one point, is his most famous student. Femi became his father’s alter ego for years until he started branching out on his own, moving away to start the Positive Force band in the 80s. It was just around the time after he had been invited to play at the New Morning Club in Paris, as well as at the Moers Festival in Germany.

Positive Force grew quickly, and was on the bill at many 90s events. Together with Dele Sosimi, a former keyboardist of his father’s band, they made a name for themselves, establishing a strong unit that would later be appreciated generally.

Femi gradually walked out of his father’s shadows, and was no more seen as daddy’s little boy, a syndrome many a son of legends suffer from.

He released his first international album Shoki Shoki in 1998, and got involved in other productions either as a stand-alone or on collaborations. His 2011 album Fight to Win, which featured the likes of Mos Def and Jaguar Wright, was a huge success; same as the 2002 remake of his father’s all-time classic Water No Get Enemy.
A three-time Grammy Award nominee (2003, 2010, and 2012), with several albums to his credit, Femi has successfully managed to carve his own legendary status. The general theme that runs through Femi’s music is not too different from that of his late father; it is the everyday Nigerian story of bad governance, corruption, stalled infrastructural works and those never-ending recurring social economic blues.

Outside the studio, he’s become the voice many would pay attention to on social issues.

Notwithstanding the many challenges that have bedevilled the system down here, and which he addresses with a fair level of passion, he’s had a relatively stable career.

In 2004, as a way of preserving his father’s heritage, Femi began work to rebuild the very famous Fela Shrine. It was at the same time that he recorded his live project Live at the Shrine.

An assembly ground for everything Fela, the Shrine has over the years played host to some of the biggest music stars in the world from Damon Albarn, and Hugh Masekela to Erykah Badu. Every year, the facility hosts the Felebration concert, as a way of remembering the good works of Fela, and also to discover new talents and promote African music.

An inspiration to Nigeria’s upcoming musicians, Femi is finding ways of passing on some of the knowledge he acquired from his father, to generations after him.

His son looks set to step into his shoes, as he has taken up the playing of the alto Saxophone to continue in the Kuti music kingdom tradition.

Femi is also working with some new talents; recently he collaborated with young act Wizkid on the latter’s Jaiye Jaiye single.

Femi Kuti’s new album No Place for my Dream, released in June under Knitting Factory Records, is in stores worldwide.


ThoRam at 23-08-2013 09:07PM (6 years ago)
(2645 | Gistmaniac) (m)