Thursday, January 31, 2013

Fela Kuti : Sorrow, Tears & Blood (Mr Mendel edit)

Released in 1977 "Sorrow Tears and Blood" was the first of Fela’s self released albums on his own Kalakuta Records, after being dropped by his label following the raid on his commune. Of course he was forced to go to court to get these masters returned, and was eventually successful. Whilst it’s easy to attribute the sentiments expressed in this piece to the violence Fela and his authorities experienced at the hands of the military and government, the tune was inspired by the 1976 Soweto uprising in South Africa in which students rioted against the forced teaching of Afrikaans. It’s Fela’s Ohio, and it’s easy to see how the events in south Africa appealed to his own struggle against authorities. They leave sorrow tears and blood, their regular trademark he offers on a much moodier, more subdued mid-tempo piece that is laden with enough emotion to be one his best works.

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