On May 17, a host of artists came together at the 229 Club in central London to salute The Black President, afrobeat originator Fela Kuti. The sold-out show brought together a slew of legendary musicians Fela worked with as well a batch of artists that simply wanted to express their respect — the lineup included Cream/Blind Faith drummer and Fela collaborator Ginger Baker, afrobeat percussion pioneer and Fela’s drummer Tony Allen, Fela’s keyboardist Dele Sosimi, plus a crop of Fela-inspired acts like Afrikan Boy, Keziah Jones, Shingai Shoniwa (of The Noisettes), TY, Blak Twang, BREIS, Terri Walker, KOF and Bumi Thomas. All the performers offered their interpretations of Fela songs aided by the backing grooves of Dele Sosimi and his Afrobeat Orchestra.
With the help of Knitting Factory and the Fela team, we’ll be releasing the entire show in separate video segments published each day up until the FREE Okayafrica presented Femi Kuti & The Positive Force concert at Central Park Summer Stage, with Sinkane and King Britt [SHOW INFO]. Keep an eye on this space for the all the videos to drop!
“Gentleman” performed by Afrikan Boy and Dele Sosimi
“Sorrow, Tears & Blood” performed by Breis & Dele Sosimi’s Afrobeat Orchestra
“Ololufemi” performed by Bumi Thomas
“Zombie” performed by TY & Dele Sosimi’s Afrobeat Orchestra
“Shuffering & Shmiling” performed by Black Twang & Dele Sosimi’s Afrobeat Orchestra
“Lady” performed by Shingai Shoniwa, Breis & Dele Sosimi
“Trouble Sleep Yango Go Wake Am” performed by Keziah Jones & Dele Sosimi’s Afrobeat Orchestra
“Water No Get Enemy” performed by KOF & Terri Walker
“Upside Down” by Tony Allen & Biola Dosunmu, backed by Dele
“Egbe Mi O” performed by Tony Allen & Ginger Baker
“Ye Ye De Smell” performed by Tony Allen, Ginger Baker & Dele Sosimi’s Afrobeat Orchestra
“Opposite People” by TY & Tony Allen, backed by Dele Sosimi’s Afrobeat Orchestra
“Shakara” by TY, Breis, Shingai Shoniwa & Black Twang, backed by Dele Sosimi’s Afrobeat Orchestra