Fela Anikulapo Kuti

Fela Anikulapo Kuti (1938-1997) was a Nigerian musician who is regarded as the founding father of Afrobeat. Kuti’s artistic output was closely related to his anti-colonial activism. As a vocalist, saxophonist and trumpeter, he was the front man of the band Koola Lobitos, which he subsequently renamed Africa 70 inspired by pan-African aspirations. He achieved international renown particularly through musical collaborations with world stars such as Miles Davis, Paul McCartney and James Brown. As a committed advocate of the liberation movement, Kuti’s life was marked by wide-reaching political disputes with the Nigerian government. Despite numerous arrests and the violent storming of his commune the KALAKUTA REPUBLIC, he continued to stand up for opposition voices in his homeland until his death. During his lifetime, Kuti released more than 50 albums. He died in Lagos, Nigeria in 1977. While Fela Kuti remains rightly celebrated to this day for his musical oeuvre and his political activism against colonialism and African dictatorships, in retrospect his more than questionable views on women and his homophobia provide a bitter aftertaste.

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