FELA KUTI - IKOYI BLINDNESS
FELA KUTI - IKOYI BLINDNESS
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FELA KUTI - IKOYI BLINDNESS

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Released: 23/02/24

Fela used the cover of Ikoyi Blindness to announce his change of middle name from Ransome, which he now considered a slave name, to Anikulapo, which means “he who carries death in his pouch.” The front cover shows Ransome crossed out and Anikulapo added above it. Fela also used the album cover to announce the Africanisation of Africa 70’s name, changing it to Afrika 70. In the title track, Fela draws attention to the economic chasm separating the haves and have-nots of Nigerian society, contrasting the get-rich-at-all-costs mindset of the residents of the prosperous Lagos suburb Ikoyi with the more community-minded attitude of the poor inhabitants of the Mushin, Maroko, Ajegunle and Somolu neighborhoods. Ikoyi residents are blind to the sufferings of less fortunate people, says Fela.

Fela returns to the topic on the second track, “Gba Mi Leti Ki N’Dolowo (Slap Me Make I Get Money).” In Lagos in 1975 and 1976, there had been an upsurge in police and military personnel assaults on people in the street; motorists were commonly pulled out of their vehicles and given a whipping for minor traffic offenses. Scandalously, the police and soldiers were being allowed to get away with corruption in broad daylight. In the lyric, Fela demands that the judiciary administer the law equally, without fear or favour.