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Ezra Collective at Field Day. Photo: Giles Smith.

You Need to Watch This London Jazz Band Play Fela Kuti

Ezra Collective recently played a special gig as they took on the king of afrobeat's catalog.

Ezra Collective are one of the bright lights coming out of London's flourishing new jazz scene.

The 5-piece outfit—which is made up of drummer Femi Koleoso, bassist TJ Koleoso, keyboardist Joe Armon Jones, trumpet player Dylan Jones, and James Mollison on saxophone—regularly cull from their afrobeat, hip-hop, and reggae influences to create something completely unique.

The group recently played a special gig as part of the Church of Sound series in which their afrobeat influences really showed as they took on the catalog of Fela Kuti.


Covering Fela is no easy task, and the band enlisted an additional crew of musicians & friends to help them deliver they're own energetic takes on the king of afrobeat's compositions.

"Since meeting 6 years ago, as friends, before dreams of writing our own music, what united us musically was our Iove for Fela Kuti. This was the tribute show that was always meant to happen," mentions drummer Femi Koleoso.

Watch a video from the concert below, captured by Three Shades, and catch the group on their upcoming European tour dates in July and August which you can check out in full here.

News Brief
Photo by Ian Dickson/Redferns (via Getty Images)

New Fela Kuti Reissues & Box Set Are Coming This Year

Partisan Records has shared initial news of upcoming Fela 50th anniversary reissues and a new box set on the way.

Fela Kuti fans have a lot to look forward to this year as Partisan Records (home to Fela's catalog) has announced plans to release special reissues of two 1971 albums: London Scene and Live! With Ginger Baker, the classic album in which Fela and his band Africa '70 where joined by the Cream drummer.

The label has also said they plan to release the fifth installment in their ongoing Fela vinyl reissue box set series, which are handpicked by notable names in the music world. Previous volumes have been curated by Erykah Badu, Questlove, and Brian Eno.

Partisan has also shared that they will also be launching a scholarship program at Fela's alma mater, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, in London this year. The label will be sharing more information on all of that exciting Fela Kuti 2021 news soon, so keep and eye out.

In the meantime, Fela Kuti is currently leading the fan vote for induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. You can head here to cast a daily ballot for the afrobeat legend. Voting is capped at one ballot per day.

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