CD Stalemate/Fear Not for Man (CD 6974382),
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Stalemate/Fear Not for Man
Fela Kuti/Afrika 70
2. Don't Worry About My Mouth O [African Message]
3. Fear Not for Man
4. Palm Wine Sound
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): KFR1017
Jubril Ogungrade; Jubril Ogungbade
2 LPs on 1 CD: STALEMATE/FEAR NOT FOR MAN.
Personnel includes: Fela Kuti (vocals, alto & tenor saxophones, piano); Leke Benson, Okalve Ojeah, Clifford Itoje (guitar); Oghene Kologbo (tenor guitar); Lekan Animashalin (baritone saxophone); Naokoma Jkem, Tunde Williams (trumpet); Babajide Olaleve (maracas); Addo Nettev (congas); Bola Olaniyi, Yemi Abegunde, Fehintola Kavode (background vocals).
Includes liner notes by Michael E. Veal and Jacqueline Grandchamp-Thiam.
Digitally remastered by Mr. John Perce Ali Bears.
Personnel: Leke Benson, Okalue Ojeah, Ayoola Abayomi, Okalve Ojeah, Eeke Benson (guitar); Oghene Kologbo (tenor guitar); Lekan Animashaun (baritone saxophone); Nwokoma Jkem, Tunde Williams, Lexter Bowie (trumpet); Nweke Atifoh (bass guitar); Ladi Tony Alabi, Tony Allen (drums).
Recording information: Decca 16-Track Studios.
Photographers: Tunde Kuboye; Femi Osunna.
Although the original liner notes report that Stalemate was "recorded during the Kalakuta crisis," the album is surprisingly non-confrontational. Modern day notes explain that the singer was distracted by a number of outside issues, such as his sudden homelessness and legal battles with Decca West Africa, but the album's decidedly lighthearted tone is perhaps an attempt to demonstrate to his oppressors that Fela Kuti had escaped the Kalakuta conflict with his health and determination intact. "Stalemate" is a slice-of-life song depicting everyday situations where two groups of people are at odds with each other; "Don't Worry About My Mouth O (African Message)" finds Kuti as a schoolmaster teaching his students to reject Western toothbrushes and toilet paper in favor of traditional African chewing sticks and water. Fear Not for Man is less about message and more about grooves, with the title track preaching briefly about the importance of being courageous before embarking on an extended instrumental jam. One of the more peculiar tracks in Kuti's catalog, "Palm Wine Sound" is a Caribbean-styled instrumental that finishes the album in the highlife spirit of carefree fun and dancing. ~ Jim Smith
Entertainment Weekly (6/2/00, p.79) - "...Features some of Fela's best works....the tracks stretch on and on, combining intricate Afro-funk with outspoken call-and-response vocal passages that sometimes landed him in prison....you can't go wrong with this album." - Rating: A
Down Beat (4/01, p.76) - 4.5 stars out of 5 - "...Attests to how much [Fela's best band] Afrika 70 shared with the advances of jazz at that time....His mixture of raw energy and sophistication is as remarkable today as it was when he first put it all on wax..."
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Knitting Factory Records KFR1017
Allegro Corporation (Dist
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