Video

The Influence: Legends' Thoughts On Fela Kuti

Watch Paul McCartney, Common, Brian Eno, Questlove, and more discuss the influence of afrobeat king Fela Kuti on their music and life.

The wingspan of Fela Kuti's influence transcends genres, borders and generations — through the years, we've seen shades of the afrobeat pioneer's vision and aesthetic pop up in such varied areas as American hip-hop, political activism, underground music, dance clubs, human rights campaigns and plenty others.

To commemorate what would have been Fela's 75th birthday this week and the release of KFR Records' Red Hot + Fela, we'll be posting video interviews of both legendary and contemporary musicians speaking about the influence Fela's music has had on their own work and life. Below, watch clips from Brian Eno, Common, George Clinton, Merrill Garbus of tUnE-yArDs, Ray Lema, Jim James, Robert Glasper, Alex Gibney, ?uestlove, Baloji, Talib Kweli, Bill T Jones, M1 of Dead Prez, Alabama Shakes, Wunmi, Dele and a previously shared video from Paul McCartney. Keep checking back each day as we publish more!


Paul McCartney

?uestlove

Merrill Garbus

Common

George Clinton

Jim James of My Morning Jacket

Talib Kweli

Robert Glasper

Baloji

Brian Eno

M1 of Dead Prez

Ray Lema

Bill T Jones

Wunmi

Brittany Howard of Alabama Shakes

Alex Gibney

Dele

BBC Felabration Segment

Interview

A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

We talk to the Nigerian stars about the hardest lessons they've learned, best advice they've ever been given and what Nigeria means to them.

Olamide and Fireboy DML have been working together for three years, but the first time they sit down to do an interview together is hours after they arrive in New York City on a promo tour.

It's Fireboy's first time in the Big Apple — and in the US — and the rain that's pouring outside his hotel doesn't hinder his gratitude. "It's such a relief to be here, it's long overdue," he tells OkayAfrica. "I was supposed to be here last year, but Covid stopped that. This is a time to reflect and refresh. It's a reset button for me."

Olamide looks on, smiling assuredly. Since signing Fireboy to his YBNL Nation label in 2018, he's watched the soulful young singer rise to become one of Nigeria's most talked-about artists — from his breakout single, "Jealous," to his debut album Laughter, Tears & Goosebumps, hit collabs with D.Smoke and Cuppy, and his sophomore release, Apollo, last year.

Even while he shares his own latest record, UY Scuti, with the world, Olamide nurtures Fireboy's career with as much care and attention as he does his own, oscillating between his two roles of artist and label exec seamlessly. His 2020 album Carpe Diem is the most streamed album ever by an African rap artist, according to Audiomack, hitting over 140 million streams. When Olamide signed a joint venture with US-based record label and distribution company, Empire, in February last year he did so through his label, bringing Fireboy and any other artist he decides to sign along for the ride, and establishing one of the most noteworthy deals on the continent.

Below, Olamide & Fireboy DML speak to OkayAfrica about their mutual admiration for each other, what makes them get up in the morning and how they switch off.

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Adekunle Gold Is Living His Best Life

We speak to the Nigerian star about how marriage and fatherhood have led him to find both newfound happiness and newfound freedom as an artist.