"...A gbe gbe gbe o su wa ooo!!...." - "...We've carried this burden for too long, and we're fed up!!.."
Hanging around in the Cargo Lounge for the show to start, I picked up conversation with a gentleman called Paul, who offered to buy me a drink. While reminiscing of the good ol' Fela days, I soon discovered he was also at the last Brixton Academy Fela show. And it was off the back of Seun's performance on that night he decided to pop down for the evening. I had lobbied high and low back in 06 for a Seun Kuti press pass, but to no avail. So having not seen him perform live apart from that evening back in 92, we both wondered what he would be like on stage some 16 years on.
The show kicks off with the Egypt 80 Band who are undeniably the true original Afro Beat Pioneers, commandeerd by original band member Lekan Animasahun aka 'Baba Ani' the musical director on keyboards, 'Showboy' and 'Shekere', with the band sounding tight and fresh as ever. By the end of the fisrt tune of the nite 'Don't Give That Sh*t', they had the crowd rocking to the chorus ..." a gbe gbe gbe o su wa ooo, a gbe gbe gbe o su wa..".
Seun then arrives on stage and launches straight into 'Army Arrangement', which drives all the Naija's in the crowd into a complete frenzy. By half way through the set when he launches into a tongue in cheek ear (Yabis) bashing against the Africans and Europeans in the crowd, the current credit crunch, Western and African rulers and then into his current number one hit 'Many Things', you realise he is well and truly his father's son.
Although not a great Saxophonist like Fela, he does have all of Fela's on stage traits and is also one not to shy away from controversy. At one point stating "...This is the Part Where We Beg Them (i.e. African rulers, not leaders) SARCASTICALLY!!!!....." and "...They tell us the Trillion, Gizitrillion!! bank bale out is to stop us all going broke, well I've got a message for them. We've all being BROKE FOR A VERY LONG TIME!!!". At the end of the evening I ask Paul what he thought of the show, "Brilliant, Absolutely Brilliant" he responds.
|camera||Canon EOS 40D|
|exposure mode||full manual|