By Jayne Augoye
Late Afrobeat maestro, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti’s costumes will take a fitting place among other world music greats on the renowned Hardrock Cafe Music Memorabilia Collection on May 25.
The singer’s famous children, Yeni, Femi and Seun Kuti will hand over costumes worn by Fela, including pieces of clothing and shoes to representatives of Hard Rock International in Lagos.
Also to be donated are original Fela evergreen album covers whose designer, veteran artist, Lemi Gharioku, will also be in attendance.
Lemi is known for listening to and digesting Fela’s music, then expressing his reaction in Fela’s album covers design. Lemi has designed over 26 Fela album covers.
Coinciding with the 20th anniversary of Fela’s death, a two-part ceremony is slated to hold at Hardrock Café Lagos.
It begins by 3p.m. with an induction ceremony to be witnessed by late Fela’s friends, entertainment bigwigs and corporate Nigeria.
The ceremony will climax by 7p.m. when Femi Kuti with his Positive Force band and Seun Kuti with his Egypt 80 band hit the stage for a pulsating night of Afrobeat music.
One major highlight of the induction will be the release of a new song dedicated to the late Afrobeat maestro by 2-time Grammy Award-winning artiste, Lekan Babalola.
Other legends whose souvenirs are on the Hard Rock Memorabilia Collection include King Sunny Ade, Quincy Jones, James Brown, Jimi Hendrix, Michael Jackson, Prince, and Bob Marley among others.
The Hard Rock Café induction is being put together by talent agency, Temple Management Company after brokering a similar donation last year by juju maestro King Sunny Ade (KSA).
TMC’s Head of Entertainment, Mark Redguard said, “The Hard Rock Induction event once again reinforces the influence that the great Fela Anikulapo-Kuti still commands twenty years later. We at TMC are delighted to be identified with another historic occasion that further develops and memorializes the Nigerian Music industry worldwide”
Fela’s historic music journey began in 1958 when his parents sent him to London to study Medicine but he opted for Trinity College School of Music.
Fela formed his first band Koola Lobitos in 1961, providing the fodder for a movement that morphed into Afrobeat, a combination of elements of traditional High Life, Rock, Funk and Jazz.
Fela’s music became the voice of the hopeless and a constant thorn in the flesh of successive military governments.
Some of his popular albums include Open & Close (1971), Gentleman (1973), Confusion (1975), Expensive Shit (1975), Zombie (1976) ending with Confusion Break Bones (1990).