One of the greatest shows Ade Bantu and his Agbero crew have put together would have to be the October 2015 edition of Afropolitan Vibes, which took place during Felabration festival week; an opportunity to pay tribute to Afrobeat legend Fela Anikulapo Kuti.
To join him on stage he invited some of Nigeria’s greatest vocalist Yinka Davies, Adekunle Gold and Burna Boy, alongside Ghanaian artist Gyedu – Blay Ambolley and also a member of Fela’s former band, Show boy. It is obvious that Fela is a big influence to Bantu and his crew, almost every edition of Afropolitan Vibes, a chorus from one his songs is sang in tribute.
At the October Fela-dition, the former manager of the king of afro beat Benson Idonije, was present with his grand-son Damini Ogulu, aka, Burna Boy. When Burna Boy took to stage, he gave one of the most energised performances Afropolitan vibes stage has ever witnessed, it is a wonder the stage did not give way with the level of energy he exuded. Of course with Benson Idonije for a grandfather, Fela is a huge influence to Burna Boy’s sound, in between performing his songs, he sprinkled bits of Fela’s songs here and there, while his grandfather sat and watched over the band.
The guest artist from Ghana Gyedu- Blay Ambolley will not be forgetting Lagos in a while, the unique Afropolitan Vibes crowd showed him love, bold ladies went on stage to join him, and when he did Fela’s ‘African woman’ the audience went crazy and sang word for word with him. He brought his own flavour, a blend of hip hop and afro beat.
Adekunle Gold of ‘Sade’ fame, it was the purity of his voice, the passion in his music that won the crowd. He performed his two hit songs, ‘Sade and Orente’ which was a sing along performance.
Yinka Davies, the Nigerian goddess of vocals opened the show with her spectacular voice. She kept pitching and pitching; she danced and made jokes to the delight of the audience. Then there was Show Boy, a member of Fela’s Band. It was a wonder when he opened his mouth to sing some of Fela’s songs. In spite of his age, he had so much energy and deep vocals, and in no time he had the crowd in singing along with him, reminiscing Fela.
There was so much talent and energy on stage celebrating the life of Fela, the Abami Eda must have been looking down on Freedom Park, with a huge smile on his face.