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Watch Erykah Badu Pay Homage To Fela Kuti on Fallon

Backed by The Roots, Badu blended "On & On" with Fela Kuti's "Sorrow Tears and Blood" on Fallon.

When Knitting Factory Records announced Erykah Badu as the curator of the new Fela Kuti box set, we knew we were in for a treat, but who could have foreseen such a sweet live melody from the Dallas native inspired by the King of Afrobeat?

To mark the now sold out release of the Badu curated release, Badu returned to The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon for a Fela-inspired performance. Taking the stage donning traditional threaded tresses (a skill you can learn how to replicate here) Badu was backed by The Legendary Roots Crew and accompanied by dancer Storyboard P as she performed a medley of her hit "On & On" and a cover of Fela Kuti's "Sorrow Tears and Blood" for the Tonight Show audience.

There were only 3,000 copies of the limited edition Badu-curated box set, which comes with a 16"x24" poster designed by Nigerian artist Lemi Ghariokwu, the creative force behind 26 of Fela Kuti's album covers, and a 20-page full-color booklet.

The booklet features seven personal essays written by Badu, seven in-depth commentaries by veteran music journalist and Afrobeat historian, Chris May; song lyrics; and never before published photos of Fela Kuti. The audio has been restored and remastered from Fela's original Nigerian recordings. The artwork for each album has been meticulously recreated from original album artwork, alongside vintage vinyl label artwork.

A true work of art paying homage to "Fucking Genius." Badu's words, not ours, but we tend to emphatically agree.

Be sure to head to the OkayAfrica Shop to shop our official Fela Kuti collection before it's gone too.

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Six Things History Will Remember Kenneth Kaunda For

News of Kenneth David Kaunda's passing, at age 97, has reverberated across the globe. Kaunda, affectionately known as KK, was Zambia's first President from 1964 to 1991.

Following Nelson Mandela's passing in December 2013, Kenneth Kaunda became Africa's last standing hero. Now with his passing on Thursday, June 17 — after being admitted to the Maina Soko Military Hospital in Lusaka earlier in the week — this signals the end of Africa's liberation history chapter.

It is tempting to make saints out of the departed. The former Zambian struggle hero did many great things. He was, after all, one of the giants of the continent's struggle against colonialism. Ultimately however, he was a human being. And as with all humans, he lived a complicated and colourful life.

Here are six facts you might not have known about him.

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Music

The 7 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring Olamide, Black Motion, Blxckie x Nasty C and more

Every week, we highlight the top releases through our best music of the week column.

Here's our round up of the best tracks and music videos that came across our desks, which you can also check out in our Songs You Need to Hear This Week playlists on Spotify and Apple Music.

Follow our SONGS YOU NEED TO HEAR THIS WEEK playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.

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News Brief

Black Motion Release New Single ‘Xxikiwawa’

Stream Black Motion's new single 'Xxikiwawa'.

South African house music duo Black Motion have finally released their single "Xxikiwawa". Featuring DJ Fortee, Lady Du, Pholoso and DJ Khosto, the song is the duo's first single since the release of their 2020 album The Healers: Last Chapter.

As usual, Lady Du's kwaito-style raps and chants take centre stage as she rhymes about hustling and trusting in the elders to answer our prayers. She ends her verse with a Brenda Fassie interpolation: "Indaba i-straight ayidingi i-ruler."

In trademark Black Motion fashion, the song is built on big drums and prominent percussion panned to give way for vocals but still managing to dominate.

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Interview: Tecla Ciolfi On The Journey To Starting Her Popular Podcast ‘Texx Talks’

South African music journalist Tecla Ciolfi launched her podcast 'Texx Talks' at the height of lockdown in 2020. Since then, it has become one of the most notable music platforms in the country.