Afrobeat, I believe, is the gift that Fela shared with the world.
Seun Kuti is the heir to a special musical and cultural throne. The youngest son of Afrobeat pioneer and human rights activist Fela Kuti, Seun traverses the West-African style… to the millennial psyche, globally. As the world gets smaller culturally and political discourse resounds to the hilt, Afrobeat explodes as a voice of consciousness and social responsibility. Check him out at the Howard Theatre, Wednesday, June 11 with the Egypt 80.
Seun speaks with the same cadence as his father. He could easily be confused for a politically conscious UC Berkeley grad student. In short time, he talked with us about sounds, influences, and vinyl.
How would you describe Afrobeat, musically and culturally?
I believe it’s the most expansive of African musical experiments. It’s the most forward-reaching, evergreen, pan-African sound.
Your album is not only of Afrobeat, there are hip hop motifs as well. How’d you get acquainted with rappers M1 and Blitz the Ambassador who both appear on the album?
Blitz and I linked up via our managers and shared some good vibes. Blitz is a very good musician. It’s interesting, we spoke a few times on the phone and met for the first time in the studio. He’s been my boy for a while now, since 2009.
M1, I heard on TV that he loved to work with me. So, I hit him up on Twitter, “I want to work with you too!”