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Various Nigeria Special: Modern Highlife

For many, Nigerian music starts and ends with Afrobeat emperor Fela Kuti. Nothing wrong with that, but placing Kuti in the context of Nigeria’s thriving 1970s musical renaissance reveals a universe of similarly regal artists. The double-disc set Nigeria Special is an ideal telescope through which to view the fabulous 1970-76 highlife, Afrofunk, and grassroots sound galaxy. Groups like The Funkees, Mono Mono, or Popular Cooper and His All Beats Band show Nigerians tuned in to the era’s politically inspired youth-culture explosion, and producing soulfully rocking music. Elsewhere, The Hykkers ride a psych groove and The Don Isaac Ezekiel Combination’s sublime, blues-sax take, “Amalinja,” sounds like a Nigerian Pharaoh Sanders. Likewise, The Semi Colon’s funky makossa number “Nekwaha,” and Tony Benson’s organ-driven soul on “Ugali” are both stellar. Five years and tons of dusty master tapes in the making, Nigeria Special’s music feels as fresh, funky, and liberated as ever.

1 comments Nigeria Special: Modern Highlife

Nigeria Special Fansite (not verified) Wrote

Mon, 03/10/2008 - 02:36

Loads more stuff on Nigeria Special at:

http://nigeriaspecial.info

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