Saturday, December 26, 2009

Overcoming Our Violent Side

A city like New York is a testament to the scientific and technological strides that human beings have made over the centuries.Despite our ingenuity, there lurks within each of us, whether we want to admit it or not, a primitive side that manifests itself through violence and mayhem. If we could find a way to eradicate that side of ourselves, we would have a truly beautiful world in which to fully enjoy our technological advances and we wouldn't need to fear war or its handmaiden terrorism.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Fela's Musical Journey From Nigeria to America

The first time I heard the late Nigerian musician Fela was on WBAI, Pacifica Radio's New York FM station, in the 80s. The music reminded me a lot of James Brown's music, which I believe was an influence on Fela. I was so moved by what I heard that I taped the music off the radio and played it back often.
Seattle writer Rick VanderKnyff's article, "The Strange Love Affair Between America and the Afrobeat Superstar" discusses Fela's slow ascendancy from an unknown to a revered celebrity on the American music scene, culminating in a hit Broadway musical, directed and choreographed by Bill T. Jones.