Every year since 2000, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducts new artists to its prestigious list. The aim is to celebrate the history of some of the most influential musicians, bands, and producers. Artists are eligible for induction 25 years after premiering their first musical work.
This year’s list of nominees features some real legends of the game, Jay Z, Mary J Blige, Tina Turner, all of whom had wonderful careers and impacted many lives, but there’s a name that stands out for me, the King of Afrobeat, Fela Kuti.
Fela passed away 24 years ago, but his legacy lives on. He is arguably the most influential African artist of all time, some say he is the African Bob Marley. His work has been sampled by other artistes numerous times. He was an activist who regularly clashed with the Nigerian Government. They burnt his home, they killed his mother, they locked him up but that never stopped him. Fela continued to call out the government and he did so while releasing hit records that shaped a generation. Music was a tool that Fela used to entertain, educate and provoke thoughts. Today we see a lot of African artists try to tweak their sound to appeal to a more global audience. Fela never did this but his music went places he never had the chance to travel to. You’re definitely doing something right if one of the greatest and most celebrated artists of all time, Sir Paul McCartney, is a fan of your work.
The top 5 artists, as selected by the public from the list of nominees, will comprise a fans ballot that will be tailed along with other ballots to choose the inductees for the 2021 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. At the time this article was written, Fela Kuti led the polls, followed by Tina Turner and the Foo Fighters.
The fan polls will be open until April 30, 2021, and the Inductees will be announced in May 2021. Every vote counts and you can cast yours here.
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