Tony Allen – An Autobiography of the Master Drummer of Afrobeat by Michael E. Veal

Do you wonder about Tony Allen? Are you interested with afrobeat and drumming? If your answer “yes!” for these questions than I highly recommend you to get this great autobiographical book of Tony Allen; “Tony Allen – An Autobiography of the Master Drummer of Afrobeat” by Michael E. Veal. Book contains most important eras of Tony Allen, you can read lots of details about how Allen started on the drums, his meeting with Fela and all this crazy happenings around a innovator of afrobeat drumming, while he is struggling with Nigerian army, Fela’s dominant character as a orchestra leader and more…

I would like to share you introduction of this great material of Tony Allen, with the powerful words of Michael Veal, I believe you realize more about afrobeat, afrobeat drumming and of course Tony Oladipo Allen… Continue Reading →

Tony’s contribution on Afrobeat music

Here is a short passage from the Tony Allen’s autobiographical book (Michael Veal’s “TONY ALLEN an autobiography of the master drummer of afrobeat). You will read how Tony Allen creates his unique afrobeat patterns with the great orchestra of Fela Anikulapo Kuti’s Africa 70 and how people reacted this unique patterns of afrobeat on the times that they are being played actively on Fela’s Shrime. 

“… With all those tecniques I had brought back, it was too much for these drummers! Plus all those subtle things I was doing inside the groove matched up beautifully with that what Kofi was doing on the congas. Kofi played the congas with his hands and with sticks as well, and he was a master at getting all the different tones out of the drums. He played on the head, he played on the side of the drum, and he played on the rim. We sounded great together.

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Story of the Fela Kuti & Africa 70’s “Mister Follow Follow”

“Mr. Follow Follow” is from Fela’s 1976 album Zombie, which was a watershed in Fela’s confrontational relationship with the Nigerian army. The fury stirred up among the authories by the albums Alagbon Close 1974 and and Kalakuta Show in 1976, and the harassments Fela and Africa 70 suffered as a consequence, were as nothing compared to the repsials following Zombie…

On the title track, in a typically forthright and memorable lyric, Fela ridiculed the mindset of the army and likened its footsoldiers to zombies. It’s one of history’s all-time best insults, and it goes on for over 12 minutes.

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