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Tonight: Felabration! Salutes Afrobeat Father Fela Kuti at the Flat

10 years ago by Ernest Barteldes
Nigerian-born Fela Kuti's legacy lives on more than a decade after his untimely passing from AIDS in 1997. His unique fusion of jazz, funk, rock and his own native African sounds brought his continent's melodies to mainstream audiences in an unprecedented manner, thanks to his audacity and creativity, which is...

Turning the Screw: Fela Kuti, Jay-Z, Left Eye, Lil Wayne, Ed McMahon, Ciara, DMX and More

11 years ago by Shea Serrano
[Rocks Off now returns you to our regularly scheduled non-ACL coverage... - Ed.] Welcome back to Turning the Screw, Rocks Off's weekly rap post. It probably won’t rhyme, at least most of the time. E-mail tips to Thanks, homies. Single of the Week: “Oh Slippin’,” Perseph One Wire To...


7 years ago by Margaret Downing
Fela Kuti was a Nigerian musician with 27 wives who turned into a civic activist after meeting Sandra Isadore, a member of the Black Panthers in the 1970s. “She was instrumental in changing his political views. She really pushed his buttons,” says actress Paulette Ivory, who plays Isadore in FELA!,...

Finding Fela

Perhaps fitting for a celebration of a musician whose polyrhythmic extravaganzas tended to run 20-plus minutes, Alex Gibney's doc Finding Fela takes a while to get started. The opening scenes focus on rehearsals for Broadway's Fela!, and in the early going Gibney shows us more footage of stage-Fela Sahr Ngaujah than of the Afro-pop pioneer...

Finding Fela

5 years ago by Olivia Flores Alvarez
We like to “watch” movies rather than “listen” to them, but Finding Fela is an exception. We can close our eyes and “listen” to Finding Fela and get the documentary’s full message. Fela Kuti was the founder of the Afrobeat music genre and as such changed the face of music...

Seun Kuti & Egypt 80

8 years ago by Chris Gray
Even for the Houston International Festival, a booking like Seun Kuti & Egypt '80 is an eyebrow-raising, once-in-a-blue-moon event. The youngest son of Nigerian icon Fela Kuti, whose distinctive hybrid of traditional folk music and horn-heavy jazz and funk became known as Afrobeat, Seun Anikulapo Kuti joined his father's band...

FELA! at Jones Hall: An Immortal Feast

7 years ago by John Nova Lomax
If ever a show's name deserved the all-caps, exclamation mark treatment, FELA! is it. Both the man and the multiple-Tony Award-winning musical about him are larger than life, spectacles equally spiritual, sensual and cerebral. Nigerian afrobeat creator Fela Anikulapo-Kuti's life had two acts, and so does this show, though Sierra...

FELA! A Pounding Dance & Song Production Set to an Afrobeat

7 years ago by Margaret Downing
Art Attack also talked with actress Paulette Ivory, who plays the Black Panther member who radicalized Fela. In FELA!, the story of Fela Kuti, a Nigerian musician who became a civic activist, Melanie Marshall, who plays Fela's mother, Funmilayo, spends most of the play as a ghost. "I only appear...

What It Took to Bring Afrobeat Royalty Seun Kuti & Egypt 80 to Houston

4 years ago by Chris Gray
Anyone lucky enough to see Seun Kuti & Egypt 80 live doesn't soon forget it. The son of Fela Kuti, the late Nigerian-born musician whose transcendent music and consciousness-raising rhetoric put him the same class as fellow icons James Brown and Bob Marley, the Seun first played with his father’s...

The Afrobeat of FELA!Makes its Way to Jones Hall

8 years ago by Margaret Downing
Paulette Ivory didn't even know who Fela was when a friend of hers called her up and told her "There's a role with your name on it." The British actress who'd done Lion King and been living in Los Angeles went to a meeting and signed on to FELA!, the...

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