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FELA KUTI’S – The Best Of The Black President is released on Knitting Factory Records today. The impact of Fela Anikulapo Kuti’s music in Africa – and worldwide – cannot be overstated. Hailing from Lagos, Nigeria, he was Africa’s musical genius, the creator of Afrobeat – a genre combining traditional African highlife, jazz, James Brown funk grooves and latin rhythms into a unique toxic mix that is wholly his own – and a revolutionary. Fela’s politically inflammatory songs laid bare the corruption, violence, and greed of the ruling regimes across the Continent and world. Arrested over a hundred times by the Nigerian government, ultimately 1000 soldiers invaded and destroyed the Kalakuta Republic – Fela’s living and performing compound that he shared with his 27 wives and his mother – sending nearly all of the inhabitants to the hospital, or worse. Despite the death of his own mother after the siege, Fela never stopped fighting the powers of imperialism, colonialism and racism with – as the legendary Fela Kuti put it – music as his weapon.
With deluxe editions of The Best Of The Black President comes a 40 minute DVD, narrated by Sahr Ngaujah, interviews with Carlos Moore & Bill T jones, recorded concert footage, and excerpts from various Fela Kuti documentaries, including Music Is The Weapon.