Tuesday, September 1, 2009


With origins deeply rooted in the Yoruba culture, I naturally possess an innate magnetism for the father of Afrobeat, Fela Anikulapo Kuti. That said, when I became aware of the release of the first installment of The Messengers, a joint project that finds Somali-born musician, K’NAAN and NY based DJ/Producer, J.Period paying tribute to some of the most influential artists of our time, Bob Marley, Bob Dylan and the aforementioned man who carries death in his pocket I knew I it had to get the one-click treatment. J.Period for the most part is able to successfully remix Fela songs like Open and Close, Gentleman, Let’s Start and resourcefully inserts outtakes from and not limited to MLK Biggie, and Rakim to supplement K’NAAN’s rhymes. In the past I said I considered K’NAAN a musician and not a rapper, the same still holds today. I am not necessarily a fan of his rapping but I most definitely respect his craft. Occasionally however, K’NAAN spits something worthy of a nod while highlighting his horrific childhood in war ravaged Somalia case in point, I used to speak with a lisp until I learned to let the pistol spit my will or his playful spelling of O.R.I.G.I.N.A.L on Gentleman. If you are a fan of Fela, K’Nann or J.Period you should give the first installment of the Messengers a listen. Nevertheless, I will say that not one song parallels The Roots chic sampling of Fela’s Mr. Grammarticalogylisationalism Is the Boss on I Will Not Apologize (sorry). In all honesty all the first installment of The Messengers did was force me to listen to the originator, Fela. Perhaps those who are not familiar with this musical genius [Fela] will garner interest after listening to J. Period and K’NAAN’s renditions.


J. Period & K'NAAN - Let's Start (Messengers Remix)

J.Period & K'NAAN - The Story of Fela (Open and Close)

J. Period & K'NAAN feat. Bajah - Gentleman (Messengers Remix)

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