Audio

Questlove, Erykah Badu, Ziggy Marley, Talib Kweli, Black Thought & Rich Medina Curate A Fela Kuti Playlist

Okayplayer, Okayafrica & Fela.net present a TIDAL Fela Kuti playlist from Questlove, Erykah Badu, Ziggy Marley, Talib Kweli & more.


To mark what would've been Fela Kuti's 77th birthday, Okayplayer, Okayafrica & Fela.net present a 30-track playlist of highlights from the afrobeat legend's discography compiled by Questlove, Erykah Badu, Black Thought, Ziggy Marley, Talib Kweli, and Rich Medina. The co-curated Happy Birthday Fela playlist, hosted by TIDAL, runs through several classics and rare cuts from Fela's catalog which were originally published in Fela.net's artists playlist series. Read some of the curating artists' thoughts on Fela below and stream the full playlist on TIDAL underneath.

“[Fela’s music is] not microwave music, it’s souffle. It’s a slow burn that just sizzles, and gets hotter… He clearly had the ear and the adoration of the people. To use this time & time again, and to get thrown in jail every time a single comes out. I mean, I have 16 records and can’t imagine that I might have to go to jail for every time my album comes out. Not many people are willing to suffer for their craft.” Questlove

“Fela is one of my biggest influences in a very spiritual sense. His music is spirit and so is Fela. Fela is an overall influence, it’s not just music it’s everything else too.” Ziggy Marley

“I was introduced to the music of Fela Kuti in 1994 by my good friend Santi Gold. I accompanied her to a record store in Philly to purchase some of her dad’s favorite music as a birthday gift for him. I decided to purchase the album Original Suffer Head for myself and the rest is history. I identified with the Nigerian Afrobeat sound in a way that I had never identified with any other music before and the spirit and feel of Fela’s music became the soundtrack for the best part of my life.” Black Thought

“Fela Kuti shows us that the music of the oppressed must always be connected to the struggle. It is never made just for the sake of making something beautiful, it has purpose that goes far beyond entertainment. Fela taught us how to be exactly who we are and to be unapologetic about it.” Talib Kweli

Interview

Kofi Jamar Switches Lanes In 'Appetite for Destruction'

The Ghanaian rapper and "Ekorso" hitmaker presents a different sound in his latest EP.

The drill scene in Ghana has been making waves across the continent for some time now. If you're hip to what a crop of young and hungry artists from the city of Kumasi in Ghana and beyond have been doing over the past year, then you already know about rapper Kofi Jamar.

Towards the end of November last year he dropped one of the biggest drill songs to emerge from Ghana's buzzing drill scene, the popular street anthem "Ekorso." In the December and January that followed, "Ekorso" was the song on everyone's lips, the hip-hop song that took over the season, with even the likes of Wizkid spotted vibing to the tune.

Currently sitting at over 10 million streams across digital streaming platforms, the song topped charts, even breaking records in the process. "Ekorso" maintained the number one spot on Apple Music's Hip-Hop/Rap: Ghana chart for two months uninterrupted, a first in the history of the chart. It also had a good stint at number one of the Ghana Top 100 chart as well, among several other accolades.

Even though he's the creator of what could be the biggest song of Ghana's drill movement till date, Kofi Jamar doesn't plan on replicating his past music or his past moves. He has just issued his second EP, a 6-track project titled Appetite for Destruction, and it would surprise you to know that there isn't a single drill song on it. Although drill played a huge role in his meteoric rise, he wants to be known as way more than just a drill rapper. He wants to be known as a complete and versatile artist, unafraid to engage in any genre — and he even looks forward to creating his own genre of music during the course of his career.

We spoke to Kofi Jamar about his latest EP, and he tells us about working with Teni, why he's gravitating away from drill to a new sound, and more. Check out our conversation below.

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