April 14, 2024

The Queens County Citizen

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Tony Allen, drummer and pioneer of Afrobeat, died at the age of 79

Tony Allen, drummer and pioneer of Afrobeat, died at the age of 79

The musician suffered from aortic rupture suddenly and was taken to the Pompidou Hospital in Paris, said Eric Trosset.

Allen was drummer and musical director of the band Fela Kuti, Africa 70 in the 1960s and 70s, and most recently played with vocalist Blur and Gorillaz Damon Albarn as part of the supergroup The Good, the Bad and Queen.

Afrobeats, a throbbing West African style of music, was popularized by its pioneer, the late musician and political activist Kuti in the 1960s.

Kuti, described as one of the biggest stars in Africa, used his cool beats and song lyrics as comments to speak out against the military government in Nigeria at the time.

But the new generation of Afrobeats artists has gained international success and recognition through the music genre, even though they have avoided political references in their music.

Red Hot bassist Chili Peppers Flea paid tribute to social media: “The epic Tony Allen, one of the greatest drummers who ever walked the earth, has left us. What a wild man, with a big heart, good and free, and the deepest grooves of sorts good. “

Nigerian-American rapper Jidenna described Allen as “The Godfather of Afrobeat Rhythms” and said his voice changed lives.

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