News, reviews and commentary on afrobeat and related music from Africa, The Caribbean and The Americas

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Fela Soul

By Robert Fox

Fun recent mashup of Fela and classic hip hop innovators De La Soul by producer Amerigo Gazaway of Gummy Soul, who describes the project as follows:
What do you get when you put together afrobeat legend Fela Kuti and rap pioneers De La Soul? You get Fela Soul, a musical tapestry created by Gummy Soul artist Amerigo Gazaway. More than just a clever title, Fela Soul is an 8-track, 33 minute journey into the world of afrobeat rhythms, funky horn riffs,  and classic hip-hop gems. Using dozens of  hand-picked samples from the Nigerian instrumentalist and political figure Fela Kuti, and 8 carefully-chosen acapellas from the Native Tongue rap trio De La Soul, Amerigo seamlessly intertwines the two into something completely new and original.
NPR singled it out as one of the best recordings of 2011 from the independnt music publishing site Bandcamp:
Fela Soul is the sort of mash-up album that never gets tired. The concept is fresh and simple: Take the music of Afrobeat legend Fela Kuti and marry it with the raps of De La Soul. Fela Soul is the work of Gummy Soul producer Amerigo Gazaway, who makes his ingredients sound as if they were born to be together. (There's also an instrumental version of the album that you can also download for free.) Nashville's Gummy Soul, a boutique soul and hip-hop label, was founded by Walter Clark and started as a radio show on Vanderbilt's WRVU.
All the tracks are available for legal streaming and downloading along with liner notes from the Gummy Soul Bandcamp site. Enjoy:

There's also a cool video to accompany the recordings:

Hat tip to Marc Gabriel Amigone of the always up-to-date Afrobeat Blog for the heads up.  

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