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Comparision Between Fela Anikulapo-Kuti And Falz The Bahd Guy

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It has been a fabulous week in Nigeria as a lot of pressing issues are being talked about and deliberated upon.
But the most trending story of the week is no other than the just released album(Moral Instructions) by Falz, a popular Nigerian musician; mainly for the fact that it addresses a truckload of political and democratic issues facing the nation today with glimpse memories of a musical legend known as Fela.

Fela Anikulapo-Kuti! Whenever I hear the name of the Nigerian music legend, something always come to my mind, his name rings a bell, a large church bell at that.
His name portrays a fearless, rebellious and politically vocal performer. But another name is making the rounds lately, he’s called “Falz”.
Falz is popularly known for his comics both in music and movie industry. But the release of the single “This is Nigeria” and his recent album titled “Moral Instruction,” has stirred reactions from Nigerians both home and abroad, and many are comparing him to the Afrobeat legend, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti.

Do read on as I decipher the comparison of both men.

FELA

Fela Anikulapo Kuti, simply known as Fela, was a Nigerian multi-instrumentalist, musician, composer, pioneer of the Afrobeat music genre and human rights activist.
Born in Abeokuta, Nigeria, north of Lagos in 1938, Fela’s family was firmly middle class as well as politically active. His father was a pastor (and talented pianist), his mother active in the anti-colonial, anti-military, Nigerian home rule movement. So at an early age, Fela experienced politics and music in a seamless combination.

He gave himself the middle name “Anikulapo” (the one who carries death in his pouch) and you will agree with me that he truly lived up to the reputation.
His music addressed issues important to the Nigerian underclass (specifically a military government that profited from political exploitation and disenfranchisement), Fela was more than simply a pop star; like Bob Marley in Jamaica, he was the voice of Nigeria’s have-nots, a cultural rebel. This was something Nigeria’s military junta tried to nip in the bud, and from his early years up until his death, Fela was hounded, jailed, harassed, and nearly killed by a government determined to silence him. In one of the most ferocious acts of violence committed against him, 1,000 Nigerian soldiers attacked his Kalakuta compound in 1977 (the second government-sanctioned attack). Fela suffered a fractured skull as well as other broken bones(still performed on stage with it); his 82-year old mother was thrown from an upstairs window, inflicting injuries that would later prove fatal. The soldiers set fire to the compound and prevented fire fighters from reaching the area. Fela ‘s recording studio, all his master tapes and musical instruments were destroyed.

He may not have been able to completely eradicate corruption and poverty with his style, but like a press release from the United Democratic Front of Nigeria noted after his death: “Those who knew you well were insistent that you could never compromise with the evil you had fought all your life. Even though made weak by time and fate, you remained strong in will and never abandoned your goal of a free, democratic, socialist Africa.”
To the end Fela was a conscious rebel. The themes of his rebellion never changed, and the anarchy which often seemed to surround his life and music was always tempered by the fundamental truths which he sought to elucidate with regard to both African society and the ongoing exploitation of people in African nations.
This is as succinct a summation of Fela ‘s political agenda as one is likely to find.

FALZ

Folarin Falana, better known by his stage name Falz, is a Nigerian singer, rapper, actor, songwriter, and self-imposed president of the Sweet Boys Association.
Falz was born in Lagos State, Mushin, in South-Western Nigeria to renowned lawyers Femi and Funmi Falana.
Just like Fela, Falz was born into a wealthy political family with an extensive law background. The Afropop singer is the only son of his parents, who are also human rights activists and lawyers.
Falz is one Nigerian music artist who boasts a successful legal career and also banks as a songwriter, an actor and television personality. Though a lawyer by profession, the singer has won more hearts on the mic more than in the law court.
His most recent project “Moral Instruction” has become the most talked about story of the week, arguably the most talked about this month.
He teams up yet again with his producer turn friend, SESS, who worked on a majority of the songs and taps into the spirit of Fela to express his feelings on a truckload of societal issues with ‘Moral Instructions’ .
Like Fela did, Falz conveys anger as he explains the theme behind the song ‘e no finish’ which also works like that of the entire album when he rhymes, ”This no be club song, I no come to shout, na real strong matter I wan talk about.”

Falz may not have suffered and experience hardship like Fela, as we’ve seen in the way he tackled anyone coming at him for the hit single “This is Nigeria,” and the fact that the nation has over the years become more democratic than it ever was, but he is doing what legends in Nigeria music can’t do since Fela left the stage. He Dragged political parties, political leaders, religion leaders, MURIC, fraudsters, sex workers; he dragged everybody.

The album touches pressing political issues which affects the development of Nigeria and the well being of the people. And many are already regarding him as the people’s voice and a legend in the making.
Falz’s inspiration goes deeper as his usually comical lyrics have become hard-hitting, political and socially conscious throughout the project.
From the creatively inspired cover-art designed by the legendary Lemi Ghariokwu, same man notable for 26 art covers by Fela to the fine details in the album roll-out and composition, Falz is intentional about what he set out to create and it is hard to argue that he is fully achieving it.
Probably, the only thing left is to go on stage in panties.

With the general election edging even closer, “Moral Instruction” lives on, and it will be interesting to see what comes up next.

We know how paramount it is to be informed and stay relevant to the trending news in the society and this section will package for you, the synopsis of the most trending news of each week. Stay glued and don’t forget to leave your thoughts in the comment section below.

 

 

 

By ‘Ballsy Toluwase

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