Monday, 13 December 2010

More than Music

A few days ago I watched Chrisette Michele being interviewed as she promoted her newest record "Let Freedom Reign" When asked what her motivation was her response for some reason stuck with me.

"Find your face in hsitory"

Sometimes as a creative person, you feel alone in your pursuit of what you think or know is your purpose and you have to look to history to get the much needed fire in your bones; so I started searching and looking to be inspired and came upon two amazing (in my opinion) people who resonated with me. Well, i say came upon not because they've been hiding or anything but have you read a note you've always read a book or a bible verse you have always read an a line jumps out at ya like it's just been inked in right there and then for you?

Well.... that's what this past few days have been like for me.

It all started with my Amazon order arriving in the post - Nina Simone, The Legend - DVD

If you are a Nina Simone fan, you'd need to watch this documentary because it's a very personal and honest protrayal of an artist who understood that her gift was way beyond music and eventhough she did sacrifice a lot (as seen in the first few minutes of the doc) for the sake of her art, I don't think she would have wanted it any other way.

A dear friend gave us a pair of tickets to see Fela - The musical at the National Theatre. (Something about Southbank makes me go AAAAAAAAAAH)

Anyhowly, I had read a few reviews prior, most of them were positive and even one journalist's comment about feeling bullied by the participatory element of the show made me all the more exceited about going to see FELA!

I have never been to the 'shrine' (Fela's club) before; not that I would have been allowed to go if I wanted to ( I can just imagine my paraent's face if I even had the gutts to ask for permission to visit; not even for research purpose) LOLOLOL!! but I imagine as I sat in the Olivier theatre (NT) a minute percentage of what the 'Shrine' must have felt like.

It was political, passionate, fun... i mean I have never been to a musical or play where I am asked to stand up and wiggle my waist! YEP! I left the theatre feeling proud and more than anything else inspired to be the best that I can be with the gift heaven has blessed me with.

Fela and Nina came to realise earlier on in their career that music was only the vehicle, for them, it definately was much more than music. Both started out not deliberatly setting out to change the world but what they did set out to do was be themselves - Original

Years after they've passed; people like myself are still being inspired by them ;)


Femi said...

Fabulous entry - I agree, great event but the real star remains Fela's musical legacy - his music is undoubtedly mercurial in every universal way.

U'mau said...

I hear you. I read a biog of Fela's and that was powerful (ignoring his blatant disrespect for women). Nina: I know not much of but the little I know, i respect. I had tickets to see her at Wembley but it was cancelled as she fell ill. She died shortly after (sigh). The replacement tickets were for Luther Vandross. I think that was his last London show (sigh). Life.

Kade S. Alli Jr said...

Great post, now a mental fixture to see the musical as soon as I can.

Not sure I'd want to see the looks or hear the reaction to you wanting to go to the Afrikan Shrine. Some things are better imagined!!