Femi Kuti who recently returned from touring the U.S.A in January has been rapidly establishing himself as an international artist and those who have followed his career and experienced his music would know for a fact that Femi has never felt satisfied with being the heir apparent to the late Fela Kuti legendary inventor and pioneer of Afrobeat.
Femi has established himself as a world renowned artists in his own right with his band Positive Force, forging his own style and interpretation of afrobeat since1985 developing a distinctive, colourful and balanced style throughout the 90's. His records tell the story: After a short spell at Motown, he took on the Afrobeat sound with his first international album in 1998 before rubbing shoulders with the modern urban style of his American peers such as Mos Def and Common on the album 'Fight To Win'. Returning to Lagos he worked on rebuilding the new Shrine and released an unbelievable live project recorded in the heat of the moment in his own venue 'Live at the Shrine Mk2 /2004' Finally his first studio record only came about in 2008, having found inspiration in Paris. This unanimously celebrated release 'Day By Day' was his most successful one.
More than just a simple musician Femi has become a true African Ambassador, For example he was in Johannesburg to sing for Africa at the opening ceremony of the Football World Cup. There he sang one of his most famous hits 'Beng Beng Beng' and took the opportunity to meet a few of the anti-Apartheid heroes. shortly after, he was heading off to New York to see the the famous and very successful Broadway Musical about Fela, where he also got to appear on stage, invited by the actors at the end of he show Femi commented -"Its truly extraordinary they really understood my father's struggle and his mindset, this show has got to travel the world and come down to the shrine naturally".
Will we see Femi carrying out this project throughout the world? Maybe. in the meantime his shrine still carries the torch week in week out, so much so it has become one of the only last dynamic temples for live African music Erykah Badu, Damon Albarn, Hugh Masekala have recently made appearances, as have the Lagos Police who regularly raid the place picking up and frightening off the local crowd, as they try to close down this highly regarded resistance venue-sometimes it seems nothing has changed as the historic persecution by the authourities continues to this day.
For the Shrines 10th Anniversary coming up later this year, Femi has plans to organize an exceptional festival, following which he will be promoting his new album on stage. check out the video of Femi making his new album 'Africa For Africa' and click here toDownload Femi Kuti Tracks from his website
Watch Video Africa for Africa
AFRICA FOR AFRICA NEW FEMI KUTI ALBUM by wedomusic
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