Pleasurable Music

The second lives of Faaji Agba, a collective of octogenarian Nigerian musicians who perform a mix of Nigerians' favorite genres.

Screengrab from the upcoming documentary film, "Faaji Agba."

On Friday, July 22, Seun Kuti, will play the Prospect Park Bandshell in Brooklyn, New York, as part of the annual “Celebrate Brooklyn” concert series. However, the real treat on the line up for the day is the warm-up act, Faaji Agba. “Faaji” means pleasure. The members include Prince Olayiwola Fatai Olagunju (better known as the late Fatai Rolling Dollar), Chief Seni Tejuoso and Prince ‘Eji’ Oyewole, among others. They’re a collective of octogenarian Nigerian musicians who perform a mix of genres (highlife, palmwine, agidigbo blues, and juju music). Some of the members’ careers date back to the 1940s, but was cut short by the instability in Nigeria, whether state repression or the deplorable conditions of the local music industry.

There’s renewed interest in the group mostly because of a documentary film  by Nigerian director Remi Vaughan Richards. In the clip below, they’re recording some music at Jazzhole Records in Ikoyi, Lagos.

Further Reading

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After unrest in July and municipal elections in November, it’s clear South Africa is in the midst of a serious social, economic and political crisis. What are the roots of it? Listen to this episode of AIAC Talk to find out.