For the longest time, there has been a misidentification of contemporary African music – from the degrading “World Music” tag to the now prevailing “Afrobeats” label, our pop music has been wrongfully labeled with all sorts of misleading tags.
Here are some thorough history and facts, the breakdown of “Afrobeat Conundrum”.
Afrobeat originated from Ghanaian highlife, Fuji, and heavy Nigerian drumbeats. It was later exported to the southern part of Nigeria in the 1970s, by Fela Kuti, who experimented with many different forms of contemporary music of the time. The new sound hailed from a club that he established called the Afrika Shrine. Upon arriving in Nigeria, Kuti also changed the name of his group to Africa ’70. The band maintained a five-year residency in the Afrika Shrine from 1970 to 1975 while afrobeat thrived among Nigerian youth.
Afrobeat is a music genre which developed in the 1970s out of a combination of West African musical styles, such as Juju Music, It began in Nigeria in the early ‘70s with Ghanaian influences. Nigeria’s most referred, mainstream, internationally toured and Grammy recognized Country music, Fuji music, which was influenced by the western essembles borrowed from its leading native category (the Juju music) and highlife together with American funk and jazz, with a focus on chanted vocals and percussion.
The genre features chants, call-and-response vocals, and complex, interacting rhythms.
Do you think Grammy’s and all global pop music platforms are limiting African pop music?