Entertainment of 2014-01-09

Drummer Tony Allen comes to town

Very few drummers in the world now arouse as much attention whenever they perform, as Tony Oladipo Allen and the man of Nigerian and Ghanaian descent will bring his masterful playing to the +233 Jazz Bar and Grill in Accra tonight, January 9.

Born in Lagos in 1940, Tony Allen is also a composer and songwriter based in Paris, France.

Though best known for having created Afro-beat with the late Fela Anikulapo Kuti in the 1960s, Allen has since created a colossal image for himself as one of the most distinctive and in-demand drummers in the world at the moment.

With his amazing poly-rhythmic style of play, Fela is quoted to have once stated that, "without Tony Allen, there would be no Afrobeat."

Allen recorded over 30 albums with Fela when they were together between 1964 and 1979. Perhaps not happy to be measured only in terms of his contribution to the Fela sound, Allen formed his own group in 1980 and performed in Lagos until moving to London in 1984.

He later moved to Paris where he crystalised his style of music he refers to as Afro-funk. It is a gripping mix of rap, R&B, electronic, dub and Afro-beat.

Allen does not like it when audiences ask him to play songs he recorded with Fela because he has long moved on from there and formulated something of his own that has captured the world.

“It is great to have a world-class act like Tony Allen at +233. He is a massive force behind the drums and he swings like no other player,” says Adrian Oddoye of +233.

Tony Allen will be backed at Thursday’s performance, which starts at 8.00pm, by Kwame Yeboah and his ObY band.

Friday, January 10 at +233 will be the turn of bassist Philip Acquah and his Patch Bay band while Saturday, January 11 is reserved for the ever sweet-sounding Efya.

Veteran guitarist, Ebo Taylor who turned 78 earlier this week will be the special guest at the show.

Source: Graphic Showbiz
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