In the 1970s, Nigerian musician Fela Kuti led a band that forged a new sound, dubbed Afrobeat. The sound incorporated the funky sounds of James Brown with the intricate rhythms of the local scene and powerful, politically charged lyrics. After succumbing to health issues, his son, Seun Kuti took over the reins of his then-current band, Egypt 80. Seun had performed with his father starting at the age of 8, making him no stranger to the stage.
Now in his mid-20s, he has shifted emphasis from performing exclusively the songs of his father to write some of his own material for the band. After perfecting the songs on stage, they headed into the studio to recrod a new album, "Seun Kuti & Egypt 80." The album's seven tracks mirror his father's commitment to the liberation of African people in Nigeria and elsewhere.
In this interview, Seun shares his thoughts on taking the stage at such an early age, taking on the mantle of his father's band, and his thoughts on how Afrobeat and hip-hop have the power to change society.
The brainchild of host and producer Jesse Thorn, "The Sound of Young America" is an irreverent weekly arts and entertainment interview program, described by its creator as "a public radio show about things that are awesome."