Audio

Fela Kuti 'The Best Of The Black President 2' + FELA! Discount Tix!

Hear a track from afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti's latest African music release.


The complete works of Fela Kuti will be seeing new light this coming Spring and Summer. The legendary afrobeat pioneer's expansive catalog is getting revamped once again in a three-part re-issue on Knitting Factory Records/Kalakuta Sunrise, complete with track-by-track liner notes by afrobeat historian and writer Chris May — no small feat for a discography spanning almost 50 albums.

This particular compilation, due out in March, will be the first of a series covering The Black President's lengthy career to be released in the UK and Europe between March and September 2013. The good folks at Knitting Factory Records have dropped one of the remastered tracks from the releases, "Everything Scatter," which you can check below. The Best Of The Black President 2 comes out on March 4 of this year. Also for the stans, make sure to catch the FELA! musical on its US tour which just kicked off in DC, see the full dates below and BUY TICKETS HERE.

GET 20% OFF FELA! TICKETS IN ATL AND PHILLY USING PROMO CODE "OKAY20"! GRAB YOURS NOW!

TOUR DATES

1/31 - 2/10: Sidney Harmon Hall - Washington, DC

2/12 - 2/17: Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts - Detroit, MI

2/19 - 2/23: Arie Crown Theater - Chicago, IL

2/25 - 2/26: Belk Theater at Blumental Performing Arts Center - Charlotte, NC

2/28 - 3/6: The Fox Theater - Atlanta, GA

3/8 - 3/9: Proctors Theater - Schenectady, NY

3/12 - 3/17: Merriam Theater - Philadelphia, PA

3/19 - 3/24: Adrienne Arsht Center - Miami, FL

4/2 - 4/4: Playhouse Square Palace Theater - Cleveland, OH

4/12 - 4/13: UA Centennial Hall - Tucson, AZ

4/23 - 4/24: ASU Gammage Memorial Auditorium - Tempe, AZ

4/25 - 5/5: Ahmanson Theater at the Music Center - Los Angeles, CA

5/7 - 5/17: Winspear Opera House - Dallas, TX

5/28 - 6/2: Paramount Theater - Seattle, WA

Music
Photo by Don Paulsen/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Hugh Masekela's New York City Legacy

A look back at the South African legend's time in New York City and his enduring presence in the Big Apple.

In Questlove's magnificent documentary, Summer of Soul, he captures a forgotten part of Black American music history. But in telling the tale of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, the longtime musician and first-time filmmaker also captures a part of lost South African music history too.

Among the line-up of blossoming all-stars who played the Harlem festival, from a 19-year-old Stevie Wonder to a transcendent Mavis Staples, was a young Hugh Masekela. 30 years old at the time, he was riding the wave of success that came from releasing Grazing in the Grass the year before. To watch Masekela in that moment on that stage is to see him at the height of his time in New York City — a firecracker musician who entertained his audiences as much as he educated them about the political situation in his home country of South Africa.

The legacy Masekela sowed in New York City during the 1960s remains in the walls of the venues where he played, and in the dust of those that are no longer standing. It's in the records he made in studios and jazz clubs, and on the Manhattan streets where he once posed with a giant stuffed zebra for an album cover. It's a legacy that still lives on in tangible form, too, in the Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholarship at the Manhattan School of Music.

The school is the place where Masekela received his education and met some of the people that would go on to be life-long bandmates and friends, from Larry Willis (who, as the story goes, Masekela convinced to give up opera for piano) to Morris Goldberg, Herbie Hancock and Stewart Levine, "his brother and musical compadre," as Mabusha Masekela, Bra Hugh's nephew says.

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