Recalling his first encounter with Fela Kuti's music, ?uestlove, the curator of this 6-LP boxset, mentions how delighted he was to discover such "rhythmically funky" African music. Further, in reference to the first Fela song he heard, "Sorrow Tears & Blood," ?questo is amazed at how intertwined the afro-beat master's life was with his music, something akin to the story of hip-hop. The Roots drummer goes to to accept and embrace the influence of Kuti's sound in hip-hop, soul, and r&b, and as he cites specifics - "whether it's his melodic structure, the counter guitar parts clashing against each other, the syncopated slow rhythm, the strong horns" - he explains why he chose Expensive Shit, Teacher Don't Teach Me Nonsense, Beats Of No Nation, Sorrow, Tears & Blood, Fear Not For Man, and Everything Scatter for this boxset; because they contain songs that were sampled and covered most. If you're unfamiliar with Fela Kuti's music, this release is the perfect place to start, and for fans and collectors, this is an opportunity to own some of the Afro-beat records in a well packaged set. Contains 1986 concert poster, color booklet with detailed liner notes, lyrics, and photos. Recommended.
- music label: Knitting Factory
reviewed by nakinboots 03/2011