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Portraits: Fela Kuti's Kalakuta Queens, Circa 2011

Photographer James Petrozzello's gorgeous portraits capture the strong beauty of the FELA! dancers paying tribute to the original Fela Queens. "I have long been a fan of Fela Kuti - the musician, the political figure, the icon," Petrozzello told Okayafrica. "The first time I saw his 'queens' I was struck by their radical style. I wanted to make these photos to pay homage to their beauty and to bring attention to the women who contributed so much to Fela's life." (Portraits of the original queens can be found here.)


FELA! has just returned from a triumphant "homecoming" in Lagos, and has upcoming dates in Amsterdam, England and in select US cities including Philadelphia and Washington, D.C.

See images from the series below:

Hettie and Shakira. Photo by James Petrozzello.

Rujeko. Photo by James Petrozzello.

Oneika. Photo by James Petrozzello.

Catherine. Photo by James Petrozzello.

Shakira. Photo by James Petrozzello.

Lauren. Photo by James Petrozzello.

Iris. Photo by James Petrozzello.

Aimee. Photo by James Petrozzello.

Abena. Photo by James Petrozzello.

Jill. Photo by James Petrozzello.

Rujeko. Photo by James Petrozzello.

Models: Rujeko Dumbutshena, Catherine Foster, Abena Koomson, Jill Vallery, Shaneeka Harrell, Shakira Marshall, Lauren De Veaux, Oneika Phillips, Hettie Barnhill, Iris Wilson, Aimee Graham Wodobode.

Style
Photo courtesy of xNasozi.

#BuyBlack: 25 Black-Owned Businesses to Check Out on Black Friday

Our 2017 guide for you to #BuyBlack this Friday.

This is our first gift guide in the run-up to the holidays. Keep checking for more lists of great African products here. And for more ideas check out the Okayafrica Shop.

It's yet another year when America officially begins the holiday season on Thanksgiving tomorrow—a "celebration" that, for most folks, is a great day to spend time with family and to eat your fill.

For those that venture into the mission that is Black Friday shopping (kudos to you), it may be worth taking that moment to put your money where your mouth is and spend your coins on black-owned businesses.

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Music
Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Kommanda Obbs Favors ‘the African Dream’ Over Western Standards On His New Single ‘Mabelebele’

Listen to Lesotho rapper Kommanda Obbs' latest single.

The music on renowned Lesotho rapper Kommanda Obbs' latest single "Mabelebele" is largely inspired kwaito. For his vocals, the rapper opts for a more melodic style on the track.

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Photo: Daniel Dorsa.

The Black Indie Artist You Need to Listen to This Month: Vagabon

Vagabon is special.

This new series will feature the most exciting independent and alternative artists from Africa and its diaspora. Black artists are complex and multidisciplinary. Twice a month, we'll introduce the hottest, boldest musicians out there that you need to listen to.

Special people have the hardest time. They see so much, are aware of so much. And indeed, Vagabon is special.

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